Today’s guest post is brought to you by Tony Messer – Enjoy!
A funny thing happened in the Gym locker room today. I became an expert on corrective laser eye surgery!
That in itself was strange enough, but what makes this even stranger is that the person I learned this from wasn’t even an eye surgeon. Let me explain. As I was putting in my contact lenses just before going into the gym, one of the members remarked that I was using contact lenses & that he had done away with his years ago. He then explained that he had decided to have corrective laser eye surgery & he has never looked back since.
So, off I went with my normal objections: Is it safe? What if in 10 years’ time they discover that this type of procedure will lead to instant blindness? It looks painful. What If I move when they are performing the treatment – will the laser frazzle my cornea?
To my surprise, the guy was a walking encyclopedia on laser eye surgery. Every objection I could raise he addressed. I even know that the machines they use are made in Italy & that they use 2 lasers so no danger of frazzled cornea as one is used to direct the other if you should move your eye!
He had obviously done his homework. In fact, the reason that he knew so much was that he had contacted one of the world’s top eye surgeons who practices at the UK’s principal eye hospital in London & had performed the procedure on him. He made it sound as if they just put an eye drop in your eye & ask you to look at a light for a moment or two.
This got me thinking about the power of referrals & what makes a really powerful referral. In this case, the service in question is both expensive & one which many people would have serious concerns about.
However, in this case, my new friend was a powerful advocate for this particular eye surgeon & his practice. The reason for this was that he was not only happy with the result, but he was educated too. For the eye surgeon this is a powerful position to be in. If you like, we can think of it as follows:
Happy Customer + Educated Customer = Raving Fan & Referrer
OK, not all of us are in businesses with such a complex service which involves allaying people’s fears. However, we can learn from this example. If you can leave your customers happy that is great, but if you can educate them too then they will be a more powerful advocate of your services.
But this even applies to less complex products or services. I use a really great guy who is like a local Mr Fix it. He is a plumber mainly, but he has a really reliable set of partners who he can call on if there is something that he cannot do himself. He is my trusted single point of contact. If ever I have an issue then he takes time to explain the issue & he always looks for a sensible fix, rather than immediately telling me I need to replace this or that expensive units.
I have lost count of the number of people I have referred to him. It is not just because he does a great job that I refer him. It is because he takes the time to help me to understand why my boiler is not working & what is the best way to fix it & then prevent this issue in the future.
In fact, Pilar & I gave him a walk on part in my book “The Lazy Website Syndrome” – you’ll find him in the Social media section although I have changed his name.
So, try to look in your business & see where you can educate your customers & prospects. Maybe you can create a free report or download from your website to get you started. People love to share knowledge & you just never know who they’ll be talking to or when.
Now, where did I leave my glasses?
Tony Messer, Author of the book “The Lazy Website Syndrome” & founder of the UK web hosting company, http://www.pickaweb.
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