Tuesday, September 18, 2007

What helps me like a business

When it's obvious they know what they're doing
They make you feel that your business is welcome and appreciated
They are respectful of your time
They do their level best to please you

Roto Rooter

I had a great experience with Roto Rooter recently. The wax ring on my toilet needed replacing and I didn't have the time to figure it out.

I called a local guy that I've used in the past. Strike one. It was after 6 pm and he wasn't answering. He didn't even have a machine to take a message. The Roto Rooter ad was calling to me, "24 hours". But, still, I waited until the next morning.

I called the local guy again. Strike two. Can't get to me for 2 days. Ouch. I was having loyalty pains, but I said, "I'm sorry, I'd like it taken care of before that, I'm calling someone else." "Ok" is all I heard from the other end of the line. Strike three.

"Hello, Roto Rooter, how may we help you?"
"OK, when would you like us to be there?"
"Anytime. We run 24 hours."
"I can have someone there in about 2.5 hours."
"Thank you very much."

Larry arrived. Was very polite, knowledgeable and clean. He was conversational and was finished in about 40 minutes or so. Not bad. I figured it would have taken me several hours to figure out. He provided the estimate and I said, "Get to work."

Some people may have balked at paying $164 to replace a $2 wax ring. I didn't. I wasn't paying for the wax ring. I was paying for the 2.5 hour arrival time. I was paying for someone who knew what they were doing. I was paying for the peace of mind of knowing the job was done right. I was paying for the friendly and clean service.

"That work has a 180 day guarantee on it." My local guy probably has a guarantee too, but he never bothered to tell me about it. Simple things can set apart a client experience.

Roto Rooter, Keep up the good work. You earned a customer that'll try you again. But, as you can see from above how quickly I ditched my local guy, it's easy to lose us too. Perhaps my experience was a fluke. Let's hope not.