How to create an effective customer journey experience
Updated: May 17
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It’s no surprise that customer service is the most important aspect of any business, without customers there is no business and there's no industry where customer service is more essential than it is in real estate.
What keeps you accountable when it comes to customer service? Do you have a customer service strategy in place? If you work in real estate, the principles and best practices if you have a customer service strategy in place, will help build a superior level of client service, thereby creating loyal customers, generating word of mouth marketing, and building passionate brand ambassadorship .🙌
Being in the customer service industry (in property administration & selling myself) for all of my working career (15 years) I can honestly say that I have learnt a lot of what to do and what not to do and have learnt how to adapt in how I do things and how I talk to and treat each individual to suit their personality.
I wanted to share this article as it amazes me that still to this day you sometimes come across businesses or salespeople who haven't quite grasp the concept of customer service and the effects it has on them and their business. I often think to myself, how does this person not know how to treat or interact with their clients or enquiries? and how are they surviving in this industry? Real Estate is a people business, you need to be able to interact and build relationships and do it well.
Real Estate and customer service is something that I feel strongly about and I hope I can give at least one person a tip or two when it comes to delivering great customer service – after all, if you deliver exceptional customer service and put your clients first, you are setting yourself up for success – be that person that is remembered for the way you made someone feel – they will want to come back and deal with you again not to mention the referrals that will be coming your way! People know people, if you make someone feel good and go above and beyond, why wouldn’t they want to do business with you again?
I also want to mention, that yes of course the agent needs to be delivering good customer service but also the team that is working alongside the agent or the staff in the office, because the client could walk away saying great things about the agent but says “ you were great etc, but your team or the staff let you down and I don’t want to deal with your company again because of this fact”, trust me, I have had this happen to me when I was selling real estate, the staff in the office let me down and let me tell you, it was starting to effect my business hence the reason I am so passionate about this topic. So it’s important that the whole company is on board with delivering great customer service and that is where a customer service journey map is highly recommended and something that I can share with you.
Great service requires custom fitting. Every day, hour, and minute clients interact with your office. It’s a lot of work (and that is why a support person is beneficial) but it’s well worth the effort - the cared for feeling a client gets when their wishes are anticipated is where you will generate the fiercest loyalty.
Below are my tips on how to create an effective customer service relationship with your clients:
→Respond to enquiries in a timely manner - I am a big advocate for getting back to people asap. If you are busy (and we all get busy but in the property industry time is of the essence), at least acknowledge that you've received their enquiry - there is nothing worse than when you email or call someone and hear nothing back for hours and you aren’t even sure whether the person received your email...it doesn't look good and I guarantee most of the time they are already talking to someone else.
→Be HONEST – we all know that unfortunately Real Estate Agents don’t have the best name out there, people appreciate honesty – if you’ve stuffed up, let the customer know, it’s ok to make mistakes but be HONEST!
→Be informative - share information with clients - the more the better – the more involved they are the more they are going to trust you and the process.
→Be patient and LISTEN – there is nothing worse when your customer is talking to you and you talk over the top of them, or you are vacant from the conversation (which people can tell if you are) – your customers should be made to feel like they are being listened to, listen to their concerns or what they are trying to tell you, if they feel like you aren’t listening, they will think you don’t care.
→Anticipate client wishes rather than just responding to them. When a client's wish is met before it’s been expressed, that sends the message that you care about the client as an individual.
→Make sure that the first and the last thing you say to your clients are on point. Research shows that clients remember the first and last minutes of a service encounter more vividly—and for longer—than the rest of it. Make sure that the first and final elements of your client interactions are particularly well engineered, because they are going to stick in the client’s memory.
→Strive to be remembered - especially in the world of Real Estate - repeat business is GOLD - if they like and remember you, they WILL sell or buy again through you!
→Don't just benchmark your service level against other businesses in competition with you.
I will leave you with this - In real estate, empathetic, patient customer service from a dedicated agent, supported by a skilled, polished, and motivated office staff, is a prerequisite for success.