Customer delight is seen as an exaggerated word we hear in every motivational speech. In seminars, speakers rant about Customer Delight and we do nothing but stare blankly at those speakers during their rant.

It is true that delighted customers are five times more likely to repurchase a product than satisfied customers.

If a customer complaints or is unhappy with your product or service, don’t be discouraged. If they cared enough to share their feedback, you have been given a great opportunity to better understand what is needed to delight your customer base.

First lets understand what customer delight is not! It’s not “Have a nice day” or “Buy one get on off”! It is the sense of surprising customers with the level of service you provide’, its surprising them in a positive way please!

It’s about ‘exceeding customer expectations’, and the scary thing is that in many industries, that can mean ‘delivering’ things ‘on time, on budget and in a courteous and friendly way’!

The level of service provided ‘surprises’ customers – it could be the speed of response, the knowledge and willingness of the staff member, the way a problem is resolved. It’s not what they expect from your industry sector and not something they’ve experienced from competitors or from you in the past. It’s the returned call at the specified time, it’s the delivery that arrives early, it’s the front line member of staff who deals with your query, your enquiry, or your problem on the spot (and doesn’t have to ask a manager for permission!)

‘Customer delight’ by definition is often unexpected. However it’s worth pointing out that some businesses build ‘spontaneity’ into the way they do business! It’s the ‘welcome note’ when you arrive in your hotel bedroom, it’s the car parking space that’s reserved for you when you arrive at your supplier’s offices, it’s the receptionist who’s expecting you, remembers you, and even remembers how you take your tea or coffee (mine’s black, no sugar!), it’s the ‘standard letter’ that says ‘according to our records, you paid us on time – Thank you!’ (It amazes me how many businesses have standard letters for saying ‘you’re 30 days / 60 days / 90 days overdue’, but don’t have one to say thanks for prompt payment!). ‘Planned spontaneity’ can happen anywhere in the customer journey.

The power of word of mouth (and ‘word of mouse’!) is getting stronger. However, people only talk about brilliant stuff and poor stuff – they don’t talk about ‘ok stuff’! The challenge therefore is to do stuff that gets people talking (positively please!) and that’s what ‘customer delight’ can do!

In the words of Maya Angelou, “People will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel”

And that’s the point! ‘Delighted’ customers feel it, they remember it, they talk about it and they come back for more of it.


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