1. Hire the best receptionist you can find. Make sure they dress professionally and have a pleasant phone voice. They are your front line PR. First impressions stick.
2. Buy a good phone system. Most people would rather talk to a live person than an automated directory of choices. Make sure you use the “on hold” time with marketing information if you do have automation.
3. “Wow” visitors when they go past your facility by purchasing cutting-edge signage. Make sure it “wows” them when people ride up and go past. Electronic signs are worth the investment.
4. Add the personal touch to your brand. You may not be able to greet everyone that comes through the door. You can train your staff to do just that. Having them all dressed in uniform shirts with the logo is a nice touch. At the very least, offer a smile that radiates “welcome and thank you.”
5. Provide a resource table of magazines or a bulletin board with current information. This helps people enjoy themselves if people have to wait. Provide resources to help them or add value to their life or are just entertaining while they wait! They’ll appreciate it. Make sure the information is orderly, current, and attractively displayed to encourage sales too. This is soft-sell approach.
6. Communicate with customers to build rapport and keep them excited about your business so they tell others. The best advertising is still “word-of-mouth.” Collect contact information from every customer. Send regular updates via email to them. If you remember their birthday – you “Wow” ’em.
7. Put your best foot forward. Take extra time and care in what people see first when they walk through your doors. This is critical because it is the place that will make the first impression. Be sure it encompasses the message you want to portray. Evaluate the smell, the backdrops, signage, podiums, flowers, colors, and any other elements..
8. Provide good customer service training. This is key to keep customers happy. Let your staff know how important customers are and how to treat them. Reward them when you catch them doing a great job!
9. Impress customers with stunning and extra clean rest rooms. This one detail is what some people remember most. Maintain your brand”signature” in every part of the building, even the bathrooms!
Ministry marketing pioneer, Award-winning social media strategist and PR Coach Pam Perry helps African American Christian authors garner publicity and leverage online strategies. As a 20-year PR veteran, she is also the co-author of “Synergy Energy: How to Use the Power of Partnerships to Market Your Book, Grow Your Business and Brand Your Ministry.” She offers help through her private mentorship program at http://www.PamPerryMentoring.com
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