CONVEY TRUST INSTEAD OF EFFICIENCY
Customers want to trust a brand more than they want it to be efficient. Oh, yes it’s nice to have the product or service completed in a timely manner with little to no waste, but it’s not as important as trust. Customers will be more forgiving of a company who makes an error in efficiency rather than an error in trust. For example, your car could go in for service and come out quicker than expected. This would surely be a plus for you, but if your car gets scratched, trust is lost and you may not go back to that service center. On the other hand, if the service takes longer than anticipated, but comes out better than expected (maybe the service center detailed the inside of your car) you are going to be happier with that result.
There are a number of things a company can do to convey trust and one of them is asking for repeat business. When a company asks for repeat business, they are expecting you had a good enough experience to want to come back. Requests for repeat business often don’t just come as a plea to come back. They are presented in the form of an additional offering (conveys additional expertise not utilized on this visit) or to have the same service completed when the time comes around for it again (usually a business who asks for this has put considerable effort into the product or service so as to make the customer feel satisfied with it). Customers will pick up on these subtle cues even if they consciously think about it or not.
Trust is built through time and effort so the long game must be focused on instead of any short term gains. It’s going to be costly and take a lot of resources, but customers will take note of how great the experience was either by receiving much more value than expected or having an extremely smooth experience. The most trusted brands in the U.S. (USPS, Amazon, Google, PayPal) have been around on average for 30 years. While you may not be shooting to compete with these brands, you should focus on how you can convey trust. It’s a long game, but it’s worth it in the end as both you and your customers will win out.
The customer wins: Satisfaction that they chose the right company to solve their problem.
You win: Happy customers who give you repeat business and evangelize your brand.