Five Phrases They Hate to Hear

angry-girl-phone-medLast week I was part of a bizarre conversation.

What happened?

I phoned my cable TV provider to ask why the current billed amount is higher than the previous invoice.

Her surprising answer:

“Don’t you know by now that our rates go up every year?”

(In other words: “You are really a dummy.”)

Seriously?

She was either having a very bad day or had not been trained in good customer service skills.

Or maybe she had heard that question one too many times and was totally annoyed.

This experience reminded me of the sales-killer words and phrases we talk about in my e-Courses.

The 5 Worst Phrases to Say to Clients

Certain phrases and words are almost guaranteed to lose a customer or kill a sale.

Examples:

  1. “You do want to save money, don’t you?”

(Dumb question. Who wouldn’t?)

  1. “We can’t do that.”   Better: “In cases like this, we can help you by . . .”
  2. You’ll have to . . . ”   Better: “What I will ask you to do is . . .”
  1. “You’re confused” or – “you’re wrong.”   (Guaranteed to anger the customer.)
  2. “That’s not my department.”
    This is a phrase that sends the message:   “I can’t help you and we don’t really care about your business.”

Suggestion for the person who answered my question about my cable TV price increase:

When someone calls to inquire about a price or billing issue (and you don’t handle billing issues) the best way to answer the question is:

“The real expert in billing situations is [name of the person who handles
billing
] and I can connect you now or ask her to call you back. Which would you prefer?”

Or . . . just follow the Golden Rule: treat others as you would like to be treated.

Ever have a bad day?

CLICK HERE to read the three best ways to motivate yourself.

Thanks for reading – here’s wishing you a beautiful day!

Ann

The Word I Have Never Forgotten

WordsThatMatter_banner_blue-medA few years ago (more than a few years . . . actually more like a few decades+ ago) . . . on a beautiful sunny morning in early May, three of my high school classmates and I did something we should not have done.

We played hooky – skipped school. For the first time ever.

(The word I have never forgotten was spoken – later that day – by the principal of our school. A person I admired.)

It happened this way:

We were all seniors in high school.

Our classmate “Cookie” picked us up at home in the morning in her shiny new convertible, to drive us to school.

After a long, cold, snowy winter in Northern Virginia, this balmy day in May felt wonderful.

Why we thought we could get away with skipping school and that no one would notice, is a mystery. . .

. . . because we attended a small private Catholic high school taught by nuns. . . Sisters of the Holy Cross who wore those old-fashioned habits and could be very intimidating.

There were only 44 students in our senior class . . . and we thought we wouldn’t be missed?

One of our classmates (it may have been me) laughingly said “instead of going to school today, let’s drive to Glen Echo Park!”

Everyone agreed.

We were naïve.

We felt adventurous and joyful.

We drove to Glen Echo Park and had a great time.

Later that afternoon we decided to return to school, feeling guilty and realizing our parents would be worried if notified by the school.

We were in trouble.  Of course.

When it was my turn to face the principal – one to one – she said something that made me realize we had done something inconsiderate and thoughtless.

Sister Benjamin looked at me and said, softly: “Ann, I am disappointed in you.”

Wow. That was the worst (or best) word she could have used.

“Disappointed” is the word I have never forgotten.

I felt terrible when Sister Benjamin said this and I regretted what we had done.

Years later, the memory of that experience came back to me and the word “disappointed” stayed in my mind.

I realized the importance of words and how specific words can have a powerful effect.

This is why businesses hire me to write, ghost-write and edit important letters and emails.

Because . . .

. . . there are some words people love to hear

but . . .

. . . there are also wishy-washy words  never to say

and . . .

. . . specific words to avoid

plus . . .

. . . when you use these 4 words your clients will love you.

Wondering what words to use when you connect with clients?

I can help you.

Whether it is creating a flyer or writing an email or phoning a prospect or leaving a voice mail message, I can help you.

All of this is included in my e-Course.

Send me an email or use the Contact page and I’ll get back to you within 24 hours.

I would love to work with you!

Thanks for reading and being part of my Internet world.

-Ann

PS:  If you would like to subscribe to my weekly-ish e-newsletters, please sign up on this page.

An Unexpected Response to One Email

woman_reading_screen-tnHow often have you received an unexpected and creative email from someone you didn’t know?

Maybe not that often. Or . . . if you are lucky, you do get unexpected + creative emails every once in a while.

This is something nice that happened last week:

After months and months of being a customer and receiving friendly and efficient service at a local Chipotle Mexican grill and then emailing a testimonial on their website, I received a surprising (in a good way) reply.

Not only was it a fast response, though short, it was one of the most creatively worded emails I’ve ever seen.

This is the thing:

You know how – when service is really good at a restaurant, plus you enjoy the food –

you think:

“I have to tell someone, like a manager, how much I (as a customer) really appreciate the good food and great service . . .

“. . . and how this one employee is always genuinely friendly and efficient.”

Because:

How often do these hard-working folks hear positive feedback from customers?

How often do the higher-ups in another state hear positive feedback about employees they might not know?

So, after procrastinating for much too long, I found out how – and who – to contact about the great service at this restaurant.

Positive Feedback Makes a Difference

I wanted to let them know about one employee who is nearly always there and is genuinely friendly and efficient.

She actually appears to LIKE her job.

And when things are busy and moving quickly in a fast-food restaurant this is kind of unusual.

Not only did I get a quick response to my email, but it was one of the most creatively worded emails I have ever seen.

Chipotle began a trend in restaurants that the industry has dubbed “fast casual,” which offers a more upscale dining environment and food quality along with higher prices.

(Actually, the Chipotle burrito bowl is not too much more chipotle-chicken-bowl-tnexpensive than a
Big Mac meal.  I know this is true because every once in a while I have a “Big Mac attack.”)

The creative email I received from Chipotle responding to my testimonial:

“Ann,

“It sounds like we have quite the rock star on our Virginia Beach Crew.
I’ll be certain to pass your wonderful words along to Audrey and her team so they, too, can jump up and down with joy.
I hope we see you for another tasty outing soon, Ann, and thanks for showering us with love.

“Your bud in the burrito biz,
Ashley”

(“Marketing Consultant
Chipotle Mexican Grill”)

And, no, I am not an affiliate of – or being paid by – Chipotle Mexican Grill.  Just a happy customer.

If you would like to request a testimonial from one of YOUR happy customers, you can get great pre-written copy-and-paste testimonial request letters in my e-book.  Plus more than 50 different business and marketing letters that can also be used as emails.

Thanks for reading – here’s wishing you a spectacular day!

– Ann

 

How to Make an Objection Disappear

magic-disappearing-graphics-tnYesterday in the grocery store I heard a woman say excitedly:

“Look at this: ‘Buy one and get one free!'”

Her husband (I’m guessing it was her husband) objected and said:

“But we don’t need that today; maybe next time.”

Then the woman pointed to a sign next to the product, which contained a very important phrase.

They ended up buying the thing they really didn’t need.

At least they didn’t need it at that time.

But . . . why did they buy it at that moment?

Because of the phrase on the sign that made the objection disappear:

                                       “Valid through February 26th.”

(Studies show a 75 percent increase in sales with a limited-time offer.)

 

CLICK HERE to read how to get better results when responding to objections.

Thanks for reading – here’s wishing you a beautiful day!

Ann

3 Best Puppy Love Marketing Tips

Golden-retriever-puppy-and-clydesdaleIt is almost Super Bowl Sunday again and despite all the talk about “deflate gate” and what the New England Patriots may or may not have done to their footballs, I doubt that Budweiser can ever top their Super Bowl “Puppy Love” TV commercial.

The youtube video has been viewed more than 55 million times. If you have not seen this feel-good video or just want to see it again, you can watch it here

Almost makes me want to adopt a puppy :-)

And as for the three best marketing tips from the Puppy Love commercial, they are:

  • Be distinct,
  • It’s not about you
  • Get Emotional

Till next time,

Ann
PS. – The private one-to-one sales training & coaching e-Course starts Wednesday.

PPS. – More e-Course info on this page.

Have questions or – Want to sign up? Drop me a line: annbarr@annbarr.com