Customer Once, Client Forever: 12 Tools for Building Lifetime Business Relationships
by Richard Buckingham
This author, best known for co-authoring Customers for Life, makes several observations that should make you seriously consider your current state of customer service. For instance, he points out that: “In a rapidly changing business world, what was once excellent service is now commonplace. The customer service bar is constantly being raised, and if you are not improving daily, you’re falling behind.” As customers, we immediately agree with his statement remembering a recent episode of poor service we may have received. However, review his statement as a representative (owner, CEO, manager, or employee) of an organization providing service and you may feel differently. Are you improving daily or are you falling behind? It’s one or the other! If you hesitate or cringe at this point, you need to read this book!
Buckingham puts you to work from cover to cover with this book. He tells you what steps you need to take to convert a one-time customer into a lifetime client. He presents the necessary steps businesses should take in order to ensure that their clients keep coming back. He offers his strategies as 12 tools, each one building on the one before it. It’s a guide to being the best at customer service, with an emphasis on fostering repeat business and customer referrals.
He puts you to work in several ways.
- He offers margin notes focusing on the dominant thoughts of each page.
- He provides chapter-ending checklists of “Things to Do on Monday Morning.”
- He offers thought-provoking “Questions for You.”
- He provides true stories that illustrate the principles of excellent customer service.
- He’s created useful worksheets to help you plan your strategy for achieving lifetime clients.
Tired yet? No? Then read on and learn more about bringing clients and companies together.
(This book review was originally published in 2001 as one of the Top 10 Books – Edition 8.)