If you are a human, the last two years have been a whirlwind! All your clients’ lives have been impacted in meaningful ways (both good and bad), and perhaps you haven’t heard from some former clients in the last two years. This is the time to start thinking about how you can check in with everyone who is behind on their recommended service interval so you can clean up your active client list and focus your efforts in the right place.
Gazelle has a great new tool that will filter your client list to find everyone who, for example, has had “No service since March 2020” and allow you to make bulk edits to their client status.
As soon as you see the names on that list, you will find yourself asking: “What is the best way to reach out to all these clients? Should I send an email, postcard, or physical letter via the postal service?” If we woke up in your shoes, we would strongly recommend sending this as a physical letter, not a postcard or email. It is more personal and genuine, and nobody sends actual mail these days, so this is more likely to be read by your client and will be a memorable gesture in your client’s world. Also, if someone has moved out of the area, you will receive confirmation of this when the letter comes back to you marked “return to sender.” This is an easy way to trim down your active client list to people who actively want their piano serviced, allowing you to focus your efforts on providing a higher level of personalized service to a list of dedicated clients who care about having you (or your team) service their piano.
Whatever method you choose to reach out to these clients, remember this: the best messages are always anticipated, relevant, and personal. Checking in at this moment in time easily checks all three of these boxes, especially if back in 2020 you promised your existing customers you would reach out in the future when things calmed down. While we can’t exactly say things have calmed down in every corner of the world, waiting until next year (or much longer) will cause you to miss this window of opportunity to be anticipated and relevant to the events of 2020 and 2021.
Although the chaos of this two-year period might have felt like an eternity, when you think about it from the piano’s point of view, this short 24-month stretch of time really isn’t that long. Looking back, good business owners became more flexible and accommodated the changing needs of their customers as they tried to find the best next step forward with each of their clients — whether that meant masking in their clients’ homes or postponing service. But without a doubt, some clients have slipped through the cracks, and the time has come to circle back and find out if they want to resume servicing their piano.
We can confidently say, nobody in the piano service industry has survived the last 24 months without being affected in meaningful and significant ways. Some positive, some negative, but mostly it has been a mixed bag with many people who have benefited and struggled in every way you can imagine. Thankfully words like “pivot, survive, essential, non-essential, Zoom, isolation, and social distancing,” and phrases like “just another two weeks” are no longer part of our daily existence. But it is not an exaggeration to say that in 2022 we all find ourselves living in a very different world, and now (not later) is the time to check in with past customers.
The team at Gazelle has helped thousands of piano technicians around the globe navigate the chaos of the last two years, and we look forward to supporting you and your business in the years to come! May the rest of 2022 be full of reuniting with old friends, colleagues, clients, and meaningful people in all walks of your life!