Why Employees Are Key To Customer Centricity with Bob Phibbs

February 4, 2021



Our special guest, Bob Phibbs, shares his experience maximizing sales growth for retailers by focusing on the human aspect instead of battling over tech. How do you achieve a truly customer-centric experience? What training is required to build a successful team? How do you unify your online and offline worlds to provide a holistic shopping journey?

  • We ask these questions and more of our special guest, Bob Phibbs, CEO of the Retail Doctor and recognized sales coach. Bob dedicates his time to helping retailers, from your mom-and-pop to big-box names, motivate their sales teams and elevate their customer service.
  • He believes that brick-and-mortar retailers are letting online shopping win by trying to fight tech with tech instead of investing in people.
  • In this podcast, we explore Bob’s view on an employee-driven approach to retail success.

Conversation Rundown

[ 7:08-08:07 ] Customer-centric selling is how do I make somebody else’s day
If you're customer-centric. You are always looking at, how do I make somebody else's day? Because if I give them the service and the attention, then the rest will come with me. I think there is an awful lot of fraud out there with people who say they're customer-centric. Because we have an app, and it knows when you come in, and I’ll send you a message, it's like that's not customer-centric. That is like me poking a nail on the shoulder, right now, and going hey, I'm here. Hey Hey Hey I'm here, it's like shut the hell up. Because after a while I get a bruise and I’m like to delete that app. And so let's not mistake customer centricity with marketing. If you start from here to make your day, how do I open my heart and be curious why today did you walk in, you'll be fine. But the problem is, I can say that to both of you and a lot of other people, especially young people, who've never seen that model or felt that they have to be taught, and said this is exactly what you do. And this is what you don't do, and that's training and that's another discussion.

[ 10:08-11:36 ] A great selling process is no different than a great script
When selling is just a transference of feeling. I want to walk into a Prada store and I want to walk out with a pair of sunglasses because you made me feel like I look amazing. If I walked in there, no one was just looking, this is what this is the great lie, you know. I grew up in the 80s when it was fashionable to go to a mall and you'd spend two or three hours with your friends, like let's go see what's out there, the browsers are online. So if I walk into your store Anil, and you're a hardware store, there your hardware store. And all you could say to me is can I help you find something? And I was like oh you know I need number 10 nails. They're on aisle six. Can I help? Can I take you there? Sure, so I go to aisle six and I get the box. And you say to me anything else I'm like, no that's it. Did you do your job? Do you think that was customer-focused? There's a group of people that was customer-focused. And I say no, because you don't even know what I was doing, but the nails. Wouldn't be a better approach, so why'd you run out of nails, What are you making? Oh, I'm making a deck, oh a deck. Great. And now we have a conversation about a human being. And now you walk out of there with deck stain, and wood, and waterproofing, to keep your deck from rotting because you live in a tempered area. What do you think, was it a bad thing, or is that customer service?

[ 12:14-13:32 ] It is about making somebody feel they matter when they come into your brick-and-mortar store
If all you can say is. Hi, can I help you find something? And I come in and I go yeah, I'm looking for the iPhone 12 in mint green, and you say oh, I don't have it, we can order it, was that customer-centric? No, because I could have done that online. And yet I walked into your store, aren't you curious? Like I walked in with my wallet open like I'm ready to buy, and because you only heard oh, let me matchup what they asked for with our warehouse. You're in danger of losing your business because brick and mortar is not fulfillment. Customer service means in those few minutes, I feel like I'm the most important person in the world. Even if I'm just answering a question, but if I make that connection and I say that is the litmus test, then I say wow, how am I going to do that? And you hire me or you go to my online site sales rx.com don't take that out and post, make sure that they go through and you hold your employees accountable to actually use that. Because selling a great selling process is no different than a great script. We meet the character, we find something in common then there's a conflict and we resolve it. That's a movie every movie pretty much is based on that.

Meet the Experts

Bob Phibbs, CEO of the Retail Doctor, is an internationally recognized business strategist, customer service expert, sales coach, marketing mentor, author of three books, and motivational business speaker.

Bob Phibbs was named one of the top retail influencers of 2018, a recognition he is humbled and grateful to receive. His website and blog have been named Best On The Planet For Retail by Feedbuzz and was listed on over twenty retail influencer lists in 2018, often as #1 also he is a Top Voice on LinkedIn.

Retail Tips & Tweetables

Customer Service means “In those few minutes, he/she should feel like the most important person in the world”

A great selling process is no different from a great script.

It is about making somebody feel they matter when they come into your brick-and-mortar store.

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