Happy Customers Equal Great Referrals Home Based Travel Agent Articles and Information

Happy Customers Equal Great Referrals

By: Joanie Ogg, CTC, MCC

We just spent some time at our place in Punta Mita and spruced up our two rental units. We have been renting a couple of our places there for the last 10 years and so much of our business is repeat guests, I decided to find out why our places? What I discovered was that Happy Customers Equal Great Referrals!

There are plenty of other units available and we do not claim to have the lowest rates at all. I thought I knew what they like about the condos, but I was amazed that one of the things they liked the most was the ability to call us and reach out to us before and during their stay.  They said we were approachable and responded almost immediately when called upon. They like the units but they it was about the hardware, it was about the software, the people.

It is so nice to get positive feedback from our customers, isn’t it? It just feels so good to know that we are doing something that people value. We take great pride in our places down there and try to provide renters with all of the amenities they hope for and an efficient booking and payment process, as well.

I asked myself, why don’t I have them write to share their thoughts about their rental experience with us in writing.  I am the first one to suggest to travel professionals that they ask for referrals and post them on their website, add them to their sales materials and to shout their great service story for all to hear. However, I have never asked one of our renters over the past 10-years to share their good words with other potential renters. That is until now. I am not sure why I have hesitated for so long to do this. I just felt kind of odd asking for someone to pat me on the back. I got over it and made the big leap by asking them to share their joyful words with others.

I wondered though why I had never done this before? I had to do some personal introspection as to why I was hesitant in the past to reach out for references. I found some great pointers about how one can decide whether or not they have earned the right to ask for referrals. While most of these pointers are pretty commonplace to Sales 101, I still thought it was worth sharing as a reminder to us of why we have a right to ask for the business. That is if we do have that right. This easy little list of questions will help determine our worthiness to ask for referrals.

  1. Do I listen more then I talk?
  2. Do I have the knowledge and expertise to provide superior service?
  3. Do I return calls or emails to my customers within 90-minutes of receiving them?
  4. Do I act with the utmost professionalism?
  5. Do I offer them complete answers to any and all the questions they ask?
  6. Do I make them feel special and uniquely valuable?
  7. If something goes awry, do I handle it to the satisfaction of my customer, even if that means it will cost me some time and perhaps money?
  8. Do I try to do something special for my customers, so that I stand out in the crowd of competition?
  9. Do I sound friendly and courteous in all communications to my customers?
  10. Do I say thank you for their valued business?

If I can honestly answer YES to all of these questions, then I believe I have earned the right to ask my happy renters for some kind and supportive words. How about you?