People say all the time that the first impression is important. No doubt it is. Just as important, if not even more so, is the last impression, as it leaves a lasting impression.
If you’ve been following my work, this concept may be familiar to you. Recently, I tweeted about lasting impressions (follow me on Twitter @Hyken if you aren’t already doing so). I received a response from Nayeli Burns (@Nayelihrc), the concierge at Encore Event Technologies, an “in-house” event production company in hotels and resorts throughout North America. If you’ve ever been to a hotel for a conference, they are the people who set up the audio/visual support, the staging, lighting, rigging, and more.
Nayeli shared that Encore has a relentless focus on customer service, and part of their customer experience includes a “departure meeting” where they can personally thank clients and get feedback on the event they helped produce. But, there is more to it than just saying “thank you” and asking how they did. The meeting is orchestrated between the concierge (yes, Encore has a concierge in each of the venues they support), the sales manager, and the director of events. The meeting is meant to create a memorable last impression for their client. Prior to the “departure meeting”, the director of event technologies is briefed on some of the highlights of the client’s conference, which are brought up during the discussion. The personalized nature of the meeting is important, as it reminds the client of the great service they received and that they made the right choice to do business with Encore. In Nayeli’s words, “Our clients love this.”
Related: Don’t Make The 25 Dollar Mistake
This “departure meeting” works for a number of reasons:
- It is a great way to say, “Thank you!” to a customer. And, all customers deserve to be shown appreciation.
- It is an opportunity to receive face-to-face and eye-to-eye feedback. Getting your customer’s feedback in a timely fashion is vital, so why not do it just as the event is coming to an end?
- It’s personalized. This is a crucial point. Encore’s director of event technologies gets briefed before the meeting to learn about what happened at the event and uses that as part of the conversation.
- Recapping the event reminds the client how Encore helped make the meeting a success. It reinforces why they should hold their meeting at a venue that Encore supports.
- Finally, the meeting serves the purpose of leaving a powerful last impression, which is, as mentioned, a lasting impression.
What I like about what Encore Event Technologies has done, is that they have made the last impression a formal part of the client’s journey. It isn’t a “thank you” in passing. It’s a sit-down meeting, which is a central part of the process. The “departure meeting” is a major touch-point in a long process that helps ensure that the client will want to come back.
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