We all know what the BIG things are in business owner life, such as providing top-notch service for your customers. But what often doesn’t get talked about are the little things, and those matter too. A lot.
What makes a business successful? Finding customers, delivering a great product, and having a solid marketing strategy – these are all BIG things that matter a lot.
But what about the little things? The phrase “it’s all in the details” exists for a reason, after all. If those big things are the cake, these little things are the icing on top – and we all know cake is much better with a little icing 🙂 Read on to learn how nailing the little things in your business will give everything in it a beautiful, finishing sheen that your customers will LOVE.
“Little Thing” #1: Email Etiquette
We all have someone in our life with crappy email etiquette. For me, it’s an uncle known family-wide for his beyond-brief emails. Occasionally someone will say “Hey, he wrote me two whole sentences today!” and we’ll all have a good laugh.
But in all seriousness, if you’re a business owner, don’t be that person.
I’m not saying you need to include an emoji with every sentence (in fact, please don’t!) however, practices like beginning with a greeting and your recipient’s name, using complete sentences with appropriately broken-up paragraphs, and ending with a warm closer go a long way in how your customers think about you and your brand. And for extra credit, use gratitude and niceties frequently. Here’s an example:
Thank you for your note and update. I appreciate all the hard work you’ve put into this!
I will take a look over everything and get back to you by the end of the day tomorrow.
I look forward to working together. Have a great rest of your day.
“Little Thing” #2: Show Up On Time
Got phone calls? Zoom meetings? In-person appointments? Be on time … meaning be there at least 5 minutes early 🙂
When you make the effort to show up early and arrive prepared, calm, and collected for every meeting, it shows your customers both that you care a great deal and that you take your job very seriously.
For many of us, arriving on time might require a bit of psychological trickery, for example, telling yourself that if you arrive at the office (or at your computer) fewer than 15 minutes before the meeting begins, you are LATE. I myself like to begin getting into the headspace of a meeting about 30 minutes before it starts. Experiment and find what works for you.
“Little Thing” #3: Be Consistent
Consistency is everything. Whether it’s being consistent about how long it takes you to reply to emails (be it an hour or a day later), being consistent about sending a link to the Zoom meeting recording the following day, or being consistent in your demeanor or caliber of work – consistency allows your customers to feel that they always know what to expect, and that will put them at ease in a tremendous way.
“Little Thing” #4: Remember (Just About) Everything
Contrary to popular belief, remembering everything does NOT require an amazing memory. Rather, it simply requires you to figure out the systems you need not to miss things. Do you need systematized checklists in Trello for each client to make sure you don’t miss a single thing throughout their process? Do it. Do you need alarms to go off before all your meetings? Do it. Whatever helps you to remember everything and not let anything fall through the cracks is the right thing to do.
PS: For more on this topic check out my popular post, Your Business Desperately Needs a Weekly “To Do” List – Here’s Why.
“Little Thing” #5: Be True to Your Word
A few years ago, I reached out to a photographer to inquire about arranging a photoshoot. They mentioned a popular event space in town where we could hold our shoot, said they would look into when it was available, and told me they’d get back to me in a few days. When a week later I hadn’t heard from them, how do you think I felt? I’ll tell you: pretty unimportant. Forgotten about. And as though they didn’t really care if I gave them my business or not. Even though to this day I highly respect that person’s work, I’ll be honest: that past experience continues to color my view of them. Being true to your word is really important. Do whatever you have to do (as per the systems mentioned above) to make sure that when you say you’re going to do something, you do it.
The little things matter – so much! Although depending on your personality and work style it can take a little effort to get those little things together, I think you’ll find it’s well worth the effort and then some.
Looking for More?
If you liked this post, here are three other juicy quick reads on making your clients love you and taking your brand to the next level, all from Janelle (that’s me!) at Ellanyze: