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Is there a better marketing tool than word of mouth?

When you experience good service at a shop, hotel or restaurant you leave reassured that you made a good choice. As expected, service was reliable, polite and professional. You receive value for money, you're more than satisfied and the venue maintains its place in your memory bank as a 'go to' destination. Yet when a team go even further to ensure your enjoyment and happiness, you leave feeling valued, special and somewhat jubilant.

I had a truly wonderful experience recently. I arrived at a restaurant and was greeted by none other than the Head Chef, shown to reception by a genuinely happy server, and escorted to the table by an informative and sincere hostess. As we passed through the main dining room, another server smiled and said, “Good evening”. I was already looking forward to dinner, but now I was excited and I hadn't tasted a thing yet.

Another member of this well drilled team delivered 4 complementary shots that were as delicious as they were refreshing. I hadn’t even taken a piece of the warm brioche sitting on the table and already wanted to share my experience. Calm down Andrew.

Service continued to be totally ‘on point’, knowledgeable, smooth and humoured. Teamwork and timings were intuitive and seamless. Enthusiasm was tapered with confidence and the entire team seemed to be empowered to execute service sprinkled with charm and warmth.

Pride, consistency and responsibility were evident and for the first time the obvious absence of the leader mattered not. Everyone knew their part in creating and maintaining a first class reputation. A place that is not content with satisfaction and meeting expectations. Just showing up is not enough for this team. They wanted to win. They want their guests to have an exceptional and memorable experience and receive the ultimate prize in any customer centric business – returning guests, better still recommendations and ‘word of mouth’, the golden ticket in marketing.

Yet strangely and reassuringly I don't think that was their sole motivation. That is simply the applause and reward for putting the guest at the heart of everything they do. Congratulations Coal Office, Kings Cross, London for demonstrating what hospitality is all about.

If your business displays an uncompromising passion for people, training and world class hospitality, you too will be rewarded with repeat business and a great reputation - best achieved by good old fashioned ‘word of mouth’ and that is easily as powerful as any social media campaign. AK

To talk people, culture, training and world class customer service, get in touch.

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