Landau on Leadership
My foot hurt the other day so I booked an appointment with a new Podiatrist (I was referred to him by a friend). Whenever I’m a new customer (or patient), I always observe business operations (I love process improvement, streamlining biz operations, and improving customer service - I can’t help myself!).
Overall, I had a positive experience and would certainly go back to this Podiatrist, but what I observed in this humble podiatry office can be applied to lots of industries - and might give you some ideas for your business.
1) I wanted to know a little more about the credentials of this Podiatrist. When he introduced himself he could have briefly mentioned how long he’d been in practice and his speciality areas.
TIP: If I just met you, tell me a little bit about yourself so I know you’re qualified and passionate about what you do.
2) The Podiatrist could have briefly explained all of the services that they offer (upsell!). Instead, I had a short exam, he prescribed some medication, and suggested a follow-up appt. I was a potential buyer of more services, I was already in his office.
TIP: Give your customers an opportunity to try some of your other services – kind of like amazon.com suggests, “if you like this, then you might like these products too.” Upsell, cross-sell.
3) Not to get too icky, but most of us struggle with dry feet. This medical office didn’t sell a product line (foot cream, soothing bath salts, pedicure kits, cozy socks, etc). I mentioned it to the Podiatrist (I couldn’t help myself!). I suggested he start with a small inventory to test his market. He could resell some of his favorite products or, do what I suggested, and create a private label product line with his logo on it. Some simple sales training for his receptionist could mean that every patient makes a $30 purchase (multiply that by 45 patients per week!).
TIP: Don’t send your customers somewhere else to buy something that you could sell them immediately.
4) I needed a follow-up appointment, so the receptionist handed me a little white card with the time and date on it. When we booked the appointment, I entered the information into my smart phone. I didn’t need a little white card and thought it was a waste of paper too. What might be helpful for a patient like me is a reminder email a couple days prior to my appointment.
TIP: Challenge the “this is how we’ve always done it” thinking and offer your customers options that meet their needs. If you don’t know what your customers want, ask them.
I wish you a Happy New Year of success, learning, and prosperity (oh, and happy feet!).