On my recent travels to Spain, I spent the first week or so in Barcelona eating mediocre food. It wasn’t until 5 or 6 days into the trip that I began to meet people, talk to locals, take tours and get recommendations on what to do and where to go from other tourists & people I randomly chatted with. What I found was that you REALLY need to know where you are going to find a great place to eat, a specialty store or other particular establishments you may want to visit, because there is a SEA OF SATURATION when it comes to lil cafés and stores!
There are cafés that look absolutely adorable on the corner of a plaza but the food is sub-par. Or shops that you would think have the best products or price because of their storefront or how busy they are, but you almost always experience that ever dreaded “buyer’s remorse” after purchasing things from those places.
Once I got recommendations and knew exactly where to go (with the help of a map and a couple locals that understood my spanglish), I enjoyed the best food of my trip! Amazingly fresh tapas with waiters from all over the world that made my experience in their ten table lil restaurant one to remember! When I asked them why they are not as busy as some of the other cafes and what they do for marketing, they said they rely on “word of mouth” and trip advisor. So that got me thinking…
… Could Your Business Survive On Word Of Mouth Marketing? And what would clients/customers say about you when describing your services and their experience????
Yes Spain is Social, but the companies that embrace that are almost always the larger chains/franchises and well known brands that exist in numerous cities. No offense to Mickey D’s but I don’t exactly want to check-in on Foursquare while visiting Tarragona, Spain to get some free fries! I want to eat the food from local farms & restaurants, shop at locally owned stores that have history and a story, not Facebook Review Starbucks (which will get you an upgraded size espresso drinkers).
So I came up with a few questions that I thought would help any business owner in any products/service category:
1) Where do your current customers come from and how did they find you?
2) If you are found multiple ways (internet, signage, ads, etc) what percentage does each represent?
3) What is your client retention rate?
4) Do you have steady renewals or returning customers? If so, do you ask why they chose to return to you rather than your competition?
5) Do you ask your clients regularly how you are doing and what their feedback is?
6) Have you ever asked your existing clients to tell their friends/networks about a specific special you may have coming up?
7) When a client does leave, do you ask why or continue to stay in contact with them?
8) Do you have any sort of reward or discount program for returning customers?
9) What would your employees say about working for you?
10) What would a potential client say to their friend after receiving their first service from you?