You only have one chance to make a good first impression is what they say. So I wanted my first impression to be amazing since my presentation would speak for me and a store-bought presentation folder wouldn’t produce the wow factor I was after. If I was going to make an impression, I needed a custom printed folder and most printing companies have pretty high minimums. I simply didn’t have a need for 144 presentation folders; all I needed was one.
After a bit of searching online, I found a company that would print one presentation folder. Of course it was going to be expensive if you break the cost down per unit but I just needed one.
I placed the order, followed all the instructions and three weeks go by and nothing.
No communication from the printer whatsoever.
I send an email asking about my order and they tell me they missed my email with the file attached.
We go through a round of revisions and it’s finally perfect and it’s ready to print.
Then it goes silent…again.
Finally I called and left a message. No one returned my call.
I send an email telling them to cancel my order and refund my money. The customer service rep is oddly enough named Lisa, and tells me my order is all packaged, ready to ship and I should have by Monday. The excuse was the printer was broken and had been waiting on a part. No one bothered to tell me.
Yesterday my single presentation folder that took all of one month and 15 days to print finally arrived. And it arrived in a huge box which made no sense whatsoever. How un-green!
So business owners and entrepreneurs, what can we learn from this?
That’s right, communication is key. Returning calls is Business Etiquette 101 and if a order is going to be delayed you let the customer know. They may or may not want to wait. Give them the opportunity to choose and for Pete’s sake offer them something of value for their time. Try and win them because you don’t know if this is their first and only order or if they’ll be high-spending, life-long customers. The only thing they offered for their lack of professionalism was expedited shipping. They should have sent me at least 5 folders!
Yes, create a process so you don’t miss customer email orders. Is money sitting in your spam folder? Do you get that many emails in a day? If so, create folders and have orders/correspondences for each company filtered into accompanying folder.
Customer service can make or break a deal. In this case, it broke it.
The printing company that offers low print minimums on presentation folders and can do so in less than one month and 15 days, contact me!
P.S. If you want the name of the company that took nearly two months to produce a single presentation folder, email me and I’ll tell you.
Treat your customers well everybody.