In many of our meetings with clients, the issue of cross-selling on the part of the front-liner always comes up. In our Customer Experience Measurement studies, we get to monitor if the personnel of an establishment gets to do this. But really, how does one cross-sell effectively? The front-liner must first understand the customer’s needs, only then can he ‘sell more’. Cross-selling is an art. A customer would surely know if the front-liner is simply selling their most expensive item on the menu to make the extra buck.
Successful cross-selling happens when the front-liner was able to offer additional products or services that the customer actually needs or wants, and feels compelled to buy it at once. The customer was not cheated in any way, because for him, he saw ‘value’ in the additional products or services offered to him.
So, how do you actually train people to cross-sell? Product knowledge mastery is the basic requirement. Confidence in the products and in his own self is second, followed by a genuine interest in what the customers need. This, I believe is the formula for successful selling. Sadly, not many of our front-liners have all these in place.
I was reminded of a famous speech I came across while I was in hotel school. While this speech was made in the 1973, the key message is still very relevant today.
I had dinner at The Cafe Mediterranean at Powerplant, Rockwell (Manila) the other night. I ordered a vegetarian pasta which I liked, but could not finish it, so I requested for the pasta to be packed. The staff handed the bag with a not-so-little thank you note on it. It’s one of those little extra details which come unexpected and just warms your heart. Cafe Med gets a big A for effort and 5-stars for letting their customers know that they do care.