Last week, I told a story about my friend’s experience with a credit union. He had opened up a few accounts at a credit union and did not have a very informative or particularly “great” experience.  In fact, it was unsettling.  If you missed it, you can read part 1 here.

If you can’t wait to see what happened next, let’s dive in…

About a week later, my friend went to a different branch of his new credit union.  He went there to see if a different account manager could help answer questions the first left unanswered, and give him more information about their bank.  Basically, he was giving them a second chance to improve the initial experience he had at the first branch.

When he came home, his wife who told him to leave the bank, was eager to know what happened.

He said to his wife, “I told the account manager I had opened up a checking account, a savings account and an investment account last week.  When I got home, I realized I had a lot of questions because the account manager that set me up didn’t really explain a lot.  I would like to learn more about your bank, what it offers and why I should work with a credit union instead of a regular bank.”

“The account manager looked at me in shock”, he explained to his wife. “The person who opened your accounts didn’t give you a folder of information?”

“No.”

“No folder? Backseat organizer for your car? No coffee mug?”

“No, ma’am.”

“Do you know who opened up your accounts for you?”

“No, and I wish she gave me her business card so I could tell you!”

“She didn’t even give you a business card? Here, let me make this right for you.”

The account manager walked away and soon came back with a folder that contained information about his new credit union, information about his accounts, a backseat organizer for his car and TWO coffee mugs.  One for him and one for his wife.

She then proceeded to answer all the questions he had.

I have shared this story with you because customer experiences are everything!

Whether an experience happens at the beginning of the customer life-cycle or in the middle, they have the ability to make or break a relationship between you and your clients.

The experience my friend went through – either time – could have ruined the relationship between him and the credit union, before it even started.  Most people I know would not give the credit union a second chance like my friend did.

The second time, he was provided all the information he needed, plus he received a few gifts for him and his wife.

What made him stay?  Was it the second account manager’s personality?  Was it her professionalism?

Maybe.

Could it have been the gifts?

Perhaps.

If I could bet on it, I would say it was a combination of both. This is because the way you treat your clients and what you give to them to remember the experience they had help create experiences for people.

My friend did tell me that he could break a coffee mug, lose one, give them away or even throw them away, but, he would still remember the experience he had that day, whenever he saw or thought about his coffee mug.

In this case, the gifts reinforced the newfound experience with the credit union.

The moral of this story is when you interact with clients – current, and even potential clients – make it count!

Make sure your employees know how to make it count and what it takes to make it count.

Finally, remember the experience people receive is how they will view your company, what they will tell others and what they will remember about your company.