All of your customers are important to the success of your business, but your top customers are even more important. Of course, the goal is to ‘wow’ every customer, but elevate the ‘wow’ and personal service to an even higher level for the VIPs.
They come in all forms; on one hand it may be an existing client who spend the most over a given time, on the flipside it may be a potential customer one is trying to impress. Alternatively, journalists, local or national press may attend, and we’d all want to provide them with the red carpet experience.
The VIP experience has become commonplace in today’s society. We all receive VIP offers from high-street loyalty cards, ensuring we feel a ‘cut above the rest’ and receive ‘first refusal’ on goods or offers. As a culture we have grown used to being rewarded, either through loyalty, spend or having an element of influence over other. With that brings an increased expectation from customers, demanding consistently high standards as the new norm. In the modern world, this is also reflected in business, thus making it harder to provide an exceptional VIP experience.
Below we explore 5 simple-yet-effective ways of ensuring you deliver on such an important element.
1. Create more convenience
Immediately on arrival the VIP experience can begin. Dedicated parking spaces closest to the entrance, perhaps even personalised with the attendee’s name is a wonderful touch. The need for queueing can be negated by a dedicated VIP check in area with clear signage and an extra special greeting from your businesses key personnel, instantly creating a buzz among their arrival. Why not then move this desk to the VIP area, creating a dedicated help desk and point of reference for any queries. Also, bring the VIPs their bedroom keys rather than having to check in themselves.
2. Set up a VIP area
We all love it when we walk past the red velvet rope. It cannot be underrated the importance of providing a dedicated environment and area for the VIPs to comfortably check e-mails, make phone calls and relax, slightly away from the hustle and bustle of conference delegates. The key phrase being ‘slightly away’. Don’t separate your VIPs away from everyone else, you don’t want them to feel segregated. The visual of the VIP area may also create a sense of envy and competition among your other attendees, driving sales and performance, and hopefully resulting in a slightly larger area the following year!
3. Indulge them
Think about adding a dedicated host to the VIPs, who’s responsibility it is to ensure they are looked after. It also provides them with that familiar face they can speak too if they have any queries. Meeting with VIPs from the business holding the event holds a prestige associated with it and adds that feeling of being valued. Front row seats in plenary sessions, complimentary upgraded bedrooms with a bottle of wine and personalised letter are cost-effective ways of maximising their experience.
4. Surprise them
This doesn’t have to be a large formal gesture, nor should it be something insignificant. Surprising VIPs is the additional touch that heightens their experience. The surprise should be directly related to your event and/or to your business. Something to take away from the event or a bonus activity that wasn’t advertised are some ideas. Think outside the box and leave them with an experience that will have them telling the story for years to come.
5. Follow up
Most attendees will receive a generic e-mail stating ‘thank you for attending, please provide your feedback’ or something similar. Once departing the event their experience is effectively over, however a VIP shouldn’t just be a VIP for the event days. A personalised phone call or face-to-face meeting post-event adds a personal touch. Asking for their opinion and feedback on the event allows them to feel their feedback is valued. Elongate their experience.