If you’re looking to build customer loyalty, there’s no simpler nor effective way of doing it then by fully utilizing what I call TNTs.
TNTs are “tiny, noticeable things.” They’re all the little things that we don’t need to do, but when we do do them, they can have a seismic impact. They could be as small as a smile, as tiny as a “thank you,” remembering someone’s name, or perhaps recalling if they prefer their coffee with or without sugar. All little things, often overlooked that may cost nothing, yet they make and break relationships. They’re the difference between a four- and a five-star experience, and they’re the difference between a customer choosing, or not choosing, your brand over a competitor.
TNT behavior is centered around being sensitive to and then acting upon things that may at times appear insignificant to us, but mean a lot to someone else.
Here are five TNT behaviors that can instantly be put to good use, and are guaranteed to keep customers coming back:
- If you want to grow customer loyalty, start by making your team members feel taller. If your people feel good about themselves, the chances are they will want to make your customers feel good, too. “Great people make people feel great” is something I repeatedly find myself saying when speaking at conferences. A TNT gesture such as sending a handwritten note to someone’s home address or personally thanking them for all their hard work will give that person a huge lift, and probably never be forgotten.
- Always be proactively looking to exceed a customer’s expectations. Every single customer interaction needs to be seen as an opportunity to create a memorable TNT moment. When we experience a TNT, part of our brain called the tegmentum releases dopamine, a neurotransmitter chemical which makes us feel good. Even the smallest of TNTs, such as remembering a customer’s first name, can trigger a surge of dopamine. It’s interesting that the amount of dopamine released depends on the difference between our expectations of an experience and the reality of it. A small, thoughtful gift trumps a big lavish one every time.
- Ask questions. By simply asking a few questions, we not only show an interest in someone, we gain a much better understanding of their specific needs. Only by doing this can we ever have any hope of surprising someone with a TNT that we know is going to make their day.
- Listen with your eyes. When we’re listening to someone, it’s worth bearing in mind that our ears don’t give off any visible sign that we’re actually listening. They don’t start waggling, nor is there a little tell-tale light that comes on. The only way we can show people that we’re listening is by maintaining eye contact.
- Shine through your mistakes. There’s no bigger golden opportunity to show how much we care about a customer and deliver a standout TNT experience than when they have a problem. Take ownership of it, and then relish the chance of putting a very big smile on their face with a solution that goes way beyond anything they would ever have anticipated — one that blows them away.
Building customer loyalty is all about continuing to give customers a reason to choose your business over the alternatives. If you’re looking to do this, don’t ever go underestimating the potent power of TNTs!
Adrian Webster is one of the U.K.’s leading motivational speakers and author of “Tiny Noticeable Things: The Secret Weapon to Making a Difference in Business.”
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