- Silent Selling
Increase Customer Satisfaction, Increase Your Craft Beverage Sales
In Part I of this series, we discussed how to increase customer satisfaction (and therefore sales) by understanding how backstage actions affect the sales floor, and how to create a valuable Customer Journey Map. In Part II, we dove into the various “roles” that tasting room and tap room employees tend to play and the ones they should be playing. In this Part III, we’re going to wrap it all together.
Above & Beyond
Over the years, WISE has seen our industry standards continually evolving. What used to be a standard for delivering a “WOW” experience to guests is now the baseline or a ‘standard’ experience. Customers are now expecting the unexpected. They want more than just a typical good time. In order to give guests an experience that they will remember, it’s time to go above and beyond; and, when we can do that consistently, our sales also rise accordingly.
Guest Journey Map
One concept that we use a lot at WISE is the Guest Journey Map, in which we discuss how to plot out the guest experience from your customer’s point of view from the moment they approach your property through the tasting or tour experience to its conclusion. This concept helps choreograph the experience with your goals for the guests – whether you want to encourage sales, represent your brand, tell a memorable story, etc. – and then we can ensure each touch point meets these goals. Choreographing the guest experience helps minimize the backstage issues and help ensure a flawless ‘performance’ or experience.
Sample Guest Journey Map
Beyond the choreographing, our team also needs to be able to understand and anticipate the guests’ needs to ensure they get that memorable experience. Dialog and building rapport are essential here, which means the team needs to be asking open-ended questions to figure out their customers. Guests enjoy feeling as though their experience has been created just for them. By engaging with the guests, this creates a bonding moment that then translates into a unique experience that guests will remember.
Surprise & Delight
A great way to make an experience memorable to guests is to add a bit of ‘surprise and delight.’ This is something the staff does that makes the guest feel that it’s special; it’s when staff goes above and beyond what was expected, for example, an extra pour based on special interests, made a reservation for lunch or at the next winery or tap room, a surprise barrel tasting, etc.
There are many opportunities to create surprise and delight in a brand-appropriate way, but not in a one-size-fits-all or cookie-cutter way. One way to create some surprise and delight is to actually choreograph opportunities in to the guest experience. But, always encourage staff to find out about each guest and what would make their experience extra special. Have options available for guests in a brand-appropriate way. The key here is to stress that each guest is unique, so their surprise and delight over something will vary and staff needs to find out exactly would that would be. Doing the same ‘special’ thing for every guest is as effective as doing nothing special at all. Staff need to figure out each guest and what would exceed their expectations on an already, assuredly, remarkable experience.
Why not make it a company standard to always exceed guests’ expectations? Surprise and delight your guests making it a memorable guest experience. With the additional sales sure to follow, isn’t it worth it? And, as long as your creating the perfect experience, don’t miss those buying signals.
Notice Buying Signals
Is your team “Cue-less” about customer buying signals?
We’ve conducted hundreds of tasting room mystery shops and found that clear cues often go completely unnoticed by tasting room staff. These tell-tale signs might be verbal or more likely, 70% of the time, in fact; they are non-verbal. These buying signals are more obvious than we might think.
Some of the most obvious verbal buying signals (besides “I want to purchase some of your product”), are:
- Asking for another taste of a particular craft beverage or to see the club brochure
- Asking questions about the craft beverage or club features
- Almost any comment or question about the price (don’t take it as a negative!)
- Positive noises (mmmmm….)
- Asking for your – or another person’s – opinion
- Talking about what they would serve it with or who they would serve it to
- Going over a point for a second time
- Challenging the boundaries (can I get my tasting fee waived if I buy a case?)
Some great examples of non-verbal cues are:
- Seeking your attention
- Going back for another taste of their favorite craft beverage
- Any transition – e.g. if they suddenly relax, or step back from the bar
- Touching their wallet or purse – especially if they get out their credit card or cash
- Holding the club brochure or order form after they have read it.
- Chin stroking
So, if your customer is reaching for his wallet, studying those tasting notes or changing his posture, it might be time to close the sale. Don’t let those sales dollars slip through your hands! Pay attention to these obvious signals and Ask for the Order! Plant seeds and effectively sell your club!
Giving a great guest experience from behind the scenes, while on the ‘stage’ and through their memories beyond their visit, will improve not only your customer satisfaction but also your sales – don’t miss those signals. You can’t afford to miss these opportunities.
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photo credit: RaeAllen
photo credit: John Biehler
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