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One Very Important Person

You have an opportunity. A true VIP is coming to your door. Someone with a lot of influence. Friends in high places. Someone who makes the who’s who list every time, everywhere.

You know you need to step up your game. You know you need to pull out all the stops for this one person. You don’t want to give away the store. No deep discounts. That won’t impress this person. Plus, you don’t want to set a precedent that all of this person’s followers will want a discount, too.

You just have to make the kind of impression that gets this person to talk about you, to sing your praises, to spread the good word.

What are you going to do differently?

Ask that question of your staff at your next staff meeting. Put out a notice 24 hours in advance that you’re going to talk about a VIP visiting your store soon and what you need to do. Then lay out the scenario above.

What are you going to do differently?

Then ask this question… How could we practice this so that when the VIP arrives, we get it right?

You know the answers they are going to give. We could role play with each other. We could rehearse. We could try it out on some of the other customers already coming in the store. Ding, ding, ding! Winner, winner, chicken dinner!

Practice it on every single customer that comes in today. Then evaluate what worked and what didn’t. Practice it again with the upgrades on everyone tomorrow. Evaluate and repeat.

Then ask this final question… How will you know the VIP when he or she arrives?

You know the answer to that one.

You’ll never really know how many followers on Pinterest will see the picture she just took of a product in your store. You’ll never really know how many readers of her blog will share the article she wrote about the way you greeted her and followed her around the store. You’ll never really know how many friends the woman who just walked quickly through without saying a word is meeting for lunch to talk about the group gift they are planning to buy. You’ll never really know how many people that gal who said she’s “just looking” is going to invite to the shower.

But if you get the staff to start practicing their VIP treatment on everyone, they’re going to nail it when that VIP truly arrives.

-Phil Wrzesinski

PS If you ask the staff, “What are you going to do differently?” and they say, “Not a damn thing!” either you have an extremely well-trained staff who is already kicking butt or one that doesn’t have a clue. Either way, you have to fire the whole team and start over (the first group doesn’t want to do anything differently, the second doesn’t know how to do anything differently). For your sake, I hope they have some suggestions.

PPS For those who like me to spell out the obvious… Treat the very next customer like a VIP. Make her feel special. Then the next, then the next, then the next. Do it one customer at a time. Do it until you cannot treat the customer any other way. Every single customer is a VIP in her own way. Treat her like that and she will bring her network to you.

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