Successful Pro Shop entrepreneurs are always looking for new ways to enhance the ambiance of their shop, their product selection and their level of customer service. This blog will serve to facilitate that process by providing entries that address basic retail principles; new ideas in pro shop retailing and interviews with leaders in the industry. Stop by often, send a friend. firstname.lastname@example.org
A merchant who approaches business with the idea of serving the
public well has nothing to fear from the competition.
- James Cash Penney
This will be the last of the Extra Mile
series but perhaps the most compelling. "Follow-Up" is perhaps my
favorite service topic and probably the easiest to institute.
Once you have bought into pre-service,
post-service becomes an automatic. The phone and email skills are the same. The
industry wide problem is many facilities do neither. However, if you are
reading this and realize that every day is an opportunity to enhance the
experience your facility provides, you will find it easy to compete and your
customer will tell the story for you.
Near the end of last October, I received a
phone call from the General Manager at Martin Honda Dealership in Newark,
Delaware which is where I purchased my last car. It is, by the way, a very busy
dealership with an incredible service department. Here was the message.
“Mr. Kirchner, this is Ron Applegate from
Martin Honda. I’m calling to ask you to do me a favor.”
“Sure Ron, what can I do for you?”
“Please tell your wife that everyone here
at Martin wishes her a happy birthday and thanks to both of you for your
business. I notice you are on our maintenance schedule and I want to make sure
you happy with our service department.”
“Yes, they are great in fact.”
“Thanks again and anytime you need anything
or just want to talk about cars call me – my personal number is 555-5555 and
I’d love to hear from you. Thanks again.”
I hung up the phone thinking three things:
1. Why would I ever want to buy a car
2. Do the shops I work with make this type
3. I’d better get my wife something for
At a golf shop consider the following two
1. A club member at an east-coast high-end
club has a guest in from Chicago. He buys a Peter Millar shirt in the shop. The
assistant at the counter introduces himself as Jeff, thanks him and asks him
for a business card. A week later the young man sends our Chicagoan an email.
“We hoped you enjoyed your day with us
last week and are happy with the Peter Millar shirt you purchased. If I can
ever do anything for you including gift wrap and ship some similar logoed
shirts to your friends please let me know. My number here at the shop is
All the best,
from high-end club.”
Mr. Chicago immediately forwards the email
to the member who invited him to the club with a note praising Jeff, “The golf
staff at your club is the best in the country, no question.” He then tells the
story every time the subject of service at golf clubs comes up.
2. A customer buys a new driver, a rain
jacket, two new shirts and a hat, spends $1000. It is two weeks later and no
one has even thought about calling him to see if he’s hitting the ball further.
There is no Jeff at this Shop.
The golf industry and your facility in
particular should take heed. The successful, as we have been discussing, are
those who are trying harder, much like the more I practice the luckier I get.
I don’t know if I have ever heard anyone
in any shop make this type of personalized thank you and “anything I can do for
you” call or email but it should be standard operating procedure and is almost
guaranteed to create business. When the customer with the new driver is called
with an inquiry as to his satisfaction and the comment is made to close the
call “if there is anything I can ever do for you” the new-driver-guy is already
thinking about what that could be.
In summary the Extra Mile entries have
stressed wanting to increase sales by providing better service and taking
advantage of the intimacy of our repeating customer base.
Some specific actions to take to
- Contact any scheduled group play to
offer all available services.
- Prepare for arriving customers by making
it Standard Operating Procedure for your staff to familiarize themselves with
profiles when they exist.
- Challenge your staff to learn three
things that aren’t apparent about every item in your shop.
- Role play approaching customers in the
- Challenge your staff to pick one
customer a day who they will totally wow to the point where they have to tell
- Thank the customer before they leave the
shop and when possible walk them to the door.
- Challenge each staff member to make three
follow-up thank you calls per day.
Frequent golf staff meetings that focus on improving service
levels are imperative to continuing to grow the depth of the your customer
centric culture and enhancing the quality of your member and their guest’s experience
at your facility.