Business Colleagues Working Together

Over the years, starting a conversation has gotten me everything from free stuff, to nicer seats, to new customers. It wasn’t much work and the rewards were both beneficial to me as the customer as well as the business. Let me share with you how starting a simple conversation worked for me and it can work for you in your business too.

Recently, while on a lunch date with my wife at an Olive Garden, we were given a free desert and extra food to take home. We didn’t know the waiter before that day, nor were we repeat customers. It wasn’t a special occasion, nothing had gone wrong with our meal or experience and  I didn’t slip the waiter a big tip. At least not yet!

In fact, I only asked a simple question to our waiter. “How long have you been working here?” My intent was to simply ask a question to engage the waiter in a conversation. The waiter proceeded to answer that question and continued on telling us a little about his life story.  We found out that we both were born and raised in the same part of New York a long time ago. This sparked an additional conversation and we instantly connected. My wife even got involved in the conversation by asking who his favorite sports team was, Mets or Yankees? We all had a lot of fun with that particular conversation and it certainly added to our dining experience.

My wife an I ordered the soup and salad special and when we finished our meal the waiter asked if we would like a “to go” box for our soup even though there was nothing to be boxed.  We had finished everything.  He knew that but offered to give us two bowls to take home. In fact, he even asked my wife if she would like to try a new soup to take home. That was obviously very nice of him and she accepted.  The waiter then asked if we wanted dessert and we told him we were full. However, he returned shortly with a slice of cake anyway and told us to just try it and if we were really full he would box that up for us as well. Now that was “Magical”!

While our intent was simply to start a conversation and was not done with the intention of getting something free from our waiter, by engaging the waiter and sharing a personal conversation, he decided to give us a free desert. Just by our conversation we became connected and created a small friendship. Who do you think we will ask for when we return to the restaurant? How many people will we share our story with? What do you think I gave our waiter for his tip? Certainly more than 20%. That is all as a result of starting a simple conversation and making a connection.

Now let me ask you a question. What if you could spend a few seconds or minutes a day starting hundreds of simple mini-conversations like the one I described above that will add to your customer’s experience. You might even make a sale.  Here are a  few tips  on how to engage in a small conversation with your customers.

Tips and Takeaways…

1.  Ask if this is the first time they have visited, shopped, or inquired about your business.

2. Ask them where they are from. Everyone is from someplace.
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3. Compliment them about what they are wearing; nice earrings, clothing or  hat.  

4. Acknowledge their children or pets.

5. Talk about the weather, holiday, or time of the year.

Do you think it would be worth say, a few seconds or a minute of your time? You bet it would!  Not only will your business be more fun, but you’d be adding to the customer experience and turn a few minutes of a pleasurable conversation into a “magical”goldmine.  

Now don’t get me wrong. I’m not suggesting you manipulate your customers. No, what I’m talking about is turning your simple customer service tasks and conversations into leads, referrals, repeat business, more loyal customers and a customer experience that is different than your competition.  This will certainly increase sales in your business. Now that would be “Magical.” 

Would you like to know how to turn one or two simple conversations into increasing your business? Contact me today and I will show you or your team how to make your customer experience even more profitable and magical!

Always Wishing You Magical Success!