Customer Delight is a real source of competitive advantage, but how to do it? Here's an example from a very 'traditional' source - none other than Her Majesty The Queen! She 'delighted' two of her 'customers' (ok, 'subjects') last week by surprising them at their wedding in Manchester!
John and Frances Canning were married at Manchester Town Hall on Friday and Queen Elizabeth called in to see them!
There are some great learning lessons from Her Royal Highness that we can all learn from!
The story goes like this....
When John and Frances set the date for their wedding they realised that Her Majesty was going to be at a lunch in the same building, hosted by the lord mayor as part of her Diamond Jubilee celebrations.
So they sent her a bit of a 'tongue in cheek' invitation. A lady in waiting replied thanking him for the invitation and said unfortunately the Queen would not be able to attend, but she wished them all the best for the future.
Apparently they were thrilled by the fact that they actually got a response, but thought that was that. Mr Canning said: "That made my day, because I thought 'She's read it'.
That's lesson one - it's all about Managing Her Customers' Expectations.
But what happened next is a great example of Customer Delight! It contains all the ingredients of exceeding customer expectations:
Ingredient #1: Create a 'Wow' Reaction!:
At the end of the wedding as the couple had signed the register, a gentleman came up to them and said that The Queen would like to see them, and in she walked!
Ingredient#2: It Appears Unexpected And Spontaneous!
It turns out Her Royal Highness had decided that she'd like to pop in, and asked her people to organise it, but to keep it quiet. John and Frances were stunned! "Little did we know it had already been arranged a long time before!" That's called 'planned spontaneity', and it can (and should) be an integral part of the customer delight experience.
Ingredient #3: It's The Personal Touch!
This is all about 'personalising' the experience and apparently the Queen made it clear that she knew all about the couple and posed for photographs with them.
Ingredient #4: It Makes Customers ('Subjects') Feel Valued!
John and Frances were absolutely thrilled with the whole experience. "It was one of the most memorable moments of my life" explained the couple, "It was a lovely present from them to us, one of the best presents you could wish for - It was just phenomenal!"
Making customers feel valued is about doing stuff that you don't have to do - The Queen didn't have to do that!
Ingredient #5: It's Genuine!
The Royal couple appeared genuinely interested, and even Prince Phillip got involved by asking about their Italian honeymoon plans!
Ingredient # 6: It Creates A Talking Point!
The result? Two 'delighted' customers who were very happy to 'spread the news' - the press coverage was phenominal!
So, what does this mean for you and your business? No, I'm not suggesting that you randomly start turning up at your customers' weddings, but think about those ingredients and work out how you could make them work for the way you interact with your customers.
To help you, you may like to download Customer Delight As Competitive Advantage, our latest FREE ebook that gives you ideas, tips and tools to help you make this stuff work - you can download it here to print off or download straight to your Kindle or iPad!
In the meantime, one hopes one has a 'delightful' week!