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Why Knowing Your Customers’ Names Is Important

Author: Tom Borg   |   January 15th, 2010

Last week I walked into my credit union, Community Financial, in Canton, MI. As I waited in line, I noticed one of the tellers was new. Whenever there is a new teller it makes me aware that there will be a short period of time for them to get to know me. Once this young lady got my account number, she wasted no time using my name.

On my next visit, the same thing happened. On my third visit she called me by name as I walked up to the window. She did not even need to look at my account number. This kind of treatment made me feel important and respected and is one of the reasons I have been a member of this credit union since 1983.

Do you know the names of most of your customers? As Dale Carnegie said, “A person’s name is to that person the sweetest, most important sound in any language.” Research has shown that there is a particular chemical reaction that takes place in our brains when we hear our name.customer service tips

An easy way to experiment with this idea is to walk into a crowded mall and call out in a loud voice a common name like Bob or Linda. You’ll see many people by the name of Bob or Linda turn around and look at you.

If you or your employees are not regularly using the names of your customers, you are missing out on a technique that can help build a lasting relationship with them.

An easy way to get and use the customer’s name, if you don’t remember it, is to read it off his check, credit card, or ticket stub. When in doubt, simply ask. A simple way to do this is to use the fill-in-the-blank method. It works like this: “Hello, my name is Tom Borg, and your name is …..?

Once you get that person’s name, use it in the conversation a few times. It helps to write down the names of the customers you have trouble remembering. Review the list from time to time. You’ll be surprised and delighted at how easy you will be able to build a sincere rapport with your customers.

Action Idea:

1. Name ten customers who frequent your business.

2. Make it a point to call them by name when they do business with you.


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