Recommendations from friends or family are pretty powerful – it could be an album they’ve heard recently, a restaurant they had a meal at, or a holiday location they stayed at.
Their enthusiasm, the detail they give and hearing about their whole experience convinces you to take-up that recommendation the next opportunity you have.
And there are situations where it’s someone you don’t know – a sales assistant in an electrical store, a telephone customer advisor for a broadband provider or a webchat assistant for an energy provider.
You know how the conversation goes…they’re really talking-up the product / service, how it will benefit you, the value of it…and the cynic in you is thinking, “Of course they’re saying I should buy it, they’re paid to tell me that!”.
I recently came across a KPMG report entitled “The Real Value Of Engaged Employees” which stated that 78% of engaged staff are brand advocates – in other words, likely to recommend their company’s products or services.
For just one moment, let’s put aside the sales-schtick. Yes, many companies offer discounts to their employees for buying / using their company’s products / services, but then not everybody working at Sony will own a Sony TV.
So, what are these companies doing right?
- They’ve allowed their staff to be themselves, given them opportunities to show their uniqueness, and to let their personalities shine (so not robots then!)
- Allowing them to integrate themselves into everything the company does (as mentioned in a previous blog), ensuring they are imbued with the brand values that the company stands for
- Helped them to understand what they are offering to the public, is different to their competitors – if employees don’t understand what they’re selling, then how will they convince potential customer.
All this leads to those staff…
- Able to create stronger customer relationships
- Staying longer with the company
- Being the source of the company’s best ideas
A direct correlation exists between these companies with engaged staff, and their level of profitability. Three-quarters of the 100 companies ranked as the best place to work, reported profit growth, compared to only half of unranked organisations.
So the next time someone you don’t know manages to convince you to buy whatever it is they’re selling, it’s may not be just a good sales person at work!