UPDATE 3/5/12 As a result of such a great experience, when someone asks me who my son’s orthodontist is, I start telling everyone about how fantastic mine is. Apparently, one of those people became of patient as a result of the recommendation. I had no idea until I received a handwritten thank you card in the mail with a $10 gift card to Dunkin Donuts. Now, the card would have been sufficient. But the added gift card just shows what a class act they are…and are smart marketers, too.
Those who know me know my son is seven and has now entered the wonderful world of orthodontia. We knew this was coming up, stockpiled our pennies (you know how expensive it can be!) and through a series of referrals decided on an orthodontist. We landed there because he has a wonderful reputation among his peers.
When we went to his office for the initial consult I could not get over how kid (and adult) friendly the office was. The staff was almost Prozac-happy. There were gameboys, a flat screen TV with the latest kid movies, toys, educational games, magazines for the adults, private areas for cell-phone use and the coolest check-in process for the kids. They put their finger in a machine (not traditional fingerprinting) and it checks them in. Their photo pops up. (I actually think the receptionists know who the kids are and use their computer to call up the file and voila!)
Orthodontia is very stressful for the child and parent and it’s expensive. Many times it’s not even aesthetic but required for the child’s well-being. There are no shortcuts in the process, either. The experience is long and drawn out with no guaranteed results. The relationship established at the beginning and throughout the experience is critical to maximize the professional’s ability to give the child the desired result. The child and parent play a critical role in the professional’s success in achieving the desired outcome for the patient. Sound familiar?
So, back to the Prozac-induced happy office. They were so efficient and pleasant, prepared for all my questions, were ready for the hot button issues like price with easy payments plans, the numerous and onerous appointments and working with my schedule. Everything, I mean EVERYTHING, was anticipated and answered. They had ample time to address all my concerns and I did not feel rushed. No concern was too small. In many ways it was surreal.
When my son finally had his appointment to put in the appliances I had to plan for ninety minutes. They took him right on time, had coffee and snacks available knowing I would be waiting. In the alternative, they suggested if I wanted to go shopping and return he’d be in good hands. (I opted to get on the phone and tackle the insurance company who messed up…but the insurance company was also really helpful and pleasant! What’s going on?)
Towards the end of the appointment I was provided detailed information verbally and in a written packet. They demonstrated how to handle his appliances and encouraged me to try while I was there so I was comfortable. A stressful situation was made so easy I was, quite frankly, stunned. They again anticipated all potential issues which could arise between this appointment and our return the following week so I was comfortable. And the appointment was exactly ninety minutes.
Then two days later my son receives a lovely handwritten card from the technician complimenting him on what a great job he did, discussing how glad she was he shared stories about his vacation and dog and included a sticker of a dog in the card. She concluded by saying she was looking forward to seeing him at his next appointment.
This is an extraordinary client experience and highly personalized. The price: comparable to all orthodontists recommended.
More than facts, process management and functional product or service attributes, value creation is a designed based discipline of creating an episode, an encounter, an adventure, a perception, and a sense that there is greater use value in the experience than in the goods themselves.
It has been shown that an extraordinary client experience is crucial to success today.
Don’t you think that I will talk about my son’s orthodontist to all parents I know who need braces? Don’t you think I will very easily be able to detail the experience, address all their questions and do so with confidence and enthusiasm? That’s right. The orthodontist gave me all the tools I needed to do so. He gave me all the tools to leverage his work. He gave me all the tools to market his practice for him all while giving me an extraordinary client experience.
How are you creating an extraordinary client experience? How are you converting your clients into evangelists for your law practice?