We have all had the experience of throwing a stone in a pond and watching the waves ripple across the surface in ever-expanding, concentric circles. Just as a ripple hits the shoreline, your reputation for the quality and quantity of service you render, precedes you in your marketplace. Whether you’re aware of it or not, there’s an active “word-of-mouth campaign” going on about you in your community. So the real question isn’t whether or not people are talking about you, but more importantly, what are they saying?
Consumer surveys consistently underscore the importance of impeccable business ethics and professional character traits as key considerations when selecting a salesperson. Among the most sought-after character traits are personal integrity, reliability, trustworthiness, competency, responsiveness and confidentiality. Interestingly enough, these priceless, reputation-building character traits cost nothing more than a personal commitment to develop.
What’s your ripple effect? Short of taking your own survey, how can you best measure your ripple effect? The good news is these statistics already exist and are measured through your repeat business and the number of referrals you receive.
The best way to generate a positive ripple effect among your customers is to make a deliberate effort to increase the quality and quantity of the service you render. Unfortunately, shortsighted salespeople view customer service as an administrative burden and are typically slow to respond to customer requests — what kind of ripple effect are they producing?
Testimonials are an excellent way to harness the power of your positive ripple effect. When a client goes out of his or her way to compliment you on the quality of the service you rendered, that’s the perfect time to ask for a written testimonial. It has been my experience that customers are not only willing to give you a testimonial, but also often eager to help you out. If you aren’t in the habit of using testimonials during your sales presentation, I strongly suggest you consider incorporating them. A sincerely written testimonial is unbelievably powerful and persuasive when used during your closing presentation.
As a salesperson, your professional reputation is the single most important asset you possess and should never be taken for granted. In fact, it’s fair to say that your reputation alone will either make or break your sales career and has a direct influence on your career advancement and income potential. Reputations are created over a lifetime but can be destroyed in a moment. Take time right now to write down a list of things you can do to increase your ripple effect!
“Whoever renders service to many puts himself in line for greatness — great wealth, great return, great satisfaction, and great reputation.” – Jim Rohn