This year my wife and I have been exchanging Christmas gifts as we buy them. This started because I had purchased a dress for her that she was considering buying for a dinner party. I gave her the dress early, she gave me some new slippers, and off we went. Its like an unorganized 12 Days of Christmas, but we are enjoying it.
Anyways… For one of her gifts we visited Macy’s so she could purchase new makeup, lotions, cleansers and whatever else she requires. I have participated in this process before, and I happily assume my spot in the queue of husbands in the fire lane, waiting for their wives while listening to ESPN Radio.
After a period of time, I decided to go in and ask for a status update. I found her at the Chanel counter engaged in a what appeared to be a very fun and exciting conversation with one of the ladies behind the register. As I approached they finished talking, and my wife walked toward me beaming with joy. I have no background knowledge of Chanel, but my first impression is now very positive.
In the car ride home I learned that the Chanel salesperson had assisted her in selecting a vast array of products, was very informative, and did not apply any pressure to purchase. She was generous with her time and knowledge, and this made my wife very comfortable. By the end of the discussions, she was happy – even eager – to purchase from this salesperson.
On Tuesday we received a hand-written Christmas card from the Chanel salesperson. It was mailed from her home address and explained how much she enjoyed her discussions with my wife. She also included coupons for future purchases and all of her personal and professional contact information.
Now this is a great salesperson! In under an hour she developed a relationship with her prospect, conveyed her deep expertise, and offered assistance without the expectation of a sale. After my wife chose to buy she continued her effort to build a long-term, repeat purchase relationship by sending a personalized hand-written note and coupons to induce future visits.
At times I have provided this level of care to my clients, at other times I have missed steps due to time constraints. Looking forward to 2011, I intend to deliver maximum value without the expectation of a sale – and when prospects do purchase, I will make sure I show my gratitude and open the door for a long-term relationship. Meanwhile, I am going to see if Chanel makes either of the bathroom products I use – deodorant and shaving cream.
Originally Posted on December 16, 2010 by John Scranton