How to create a memorable chauffeur-driven car customer experience
Have you ever thought about how much a positive customer experience determines the trust you place in a service?
In the service sector in general, and in the world of chauffeur-driven car hire in particular, the customer experience plays a very important role as it is often the needle in the balance that drives customer satisfaction and loyalty over time. The chauffeur-driven car hire customer experience must meet and exceed customer expectations and create a lasting bond beyond the single transfer.
By curating the customer experience, every interaction can become an opportunity to impress a consumer and build a relationship that will be remembered over time and occupy a unique place in their mind.
What is the chauffeur driven car customer experience?
The chauffeur driven car customer experience is the set of perceptions and emotions that the customer accumulates throughout the entire chauffeur driven car service journey. This experience starts with the first contact, often online or by phone, continues with the transfer service itself and ends with any follow-up after the trip.
Specifically, we can distinguish four phases related to the experience of a customer choosing a chauffeur-driven car rental service:
- First contact and booking of the service. The customer experience begins when the customer requests information or makes a booking. At this stage, the ease of navigation of the website, the clarity of the information, the simplicity of the booking process and the speed of response make all the difference in converting a simple contact into a customer (we will discuss all these aspects in the following paragraphs);
- Reception and interaction. The next stage is the meeting between you and the customer. At this stage, courtesy, professionalism and punctuality, together with the cleanliness and comfort of the vehicle, directly influence the perception of the service;
- Journey or transfer. During the journey, the customer experience focuses on elements such as safety, route knowledge, the ability to avoid traffic and inconveniences such as public transport disruptions. The aim is to provide your customer with a comfortable and safe journey;
- After service. The customer experience does not end when the customer leaves the vehicle. On the contrary, at the end of the service, you need to work to retain that customer and convince them to return. In this case, managing feedback, responding to reviews and questions, and communicating after the service can help you increase your chances of retaining the customer over time.
Who is a chauffeur’s ideal client?
To understand how to create a truly memorable customer experience, the first step is to identify who your ideal customers are. You can do this by answering questions such as:
- What do my customers want?
- What do they expect from a chauffeur-driven car hire service?
- How old are they, where do they live and what are their buying habits?
- What are they afraid of?
With these questions in mind, it will be easier for you to create an “identikit” of your typical customer. However, we can say that chauffeurs generally work with:
- Executives, entrepreneurs and business travelers. Often traveling on business, business people are looking for a reliable, punctual and discreet service. They appreciate the convenience, comfort and quiet working environment that a chauffeur driven hire service can offer;
- Tourists. Tourists seeking a superior travel experience can choose a chauffeur for customized tours, airport transfers or simply to get around town in style;
- Trade show, event and convention attendees. People organizing or attending special events such as weddings, anniversaries, graduation parties or corporate functions often seek chauffeur services to ensure that everything runs smoothly;
- Companies. There are companies that need to transport important clients, executives or guests and rely on chauffeur services to ensure a first class transport experience.
Why it is important to look after the customer experience
As you may have guessed, providing an incredible customer experience is a real test for an exclusive service such as chauffeur-driven hire. Making the customer feel like the center of attention, giving them every possible care and listening to their needs will help:
- Have loyal customers over time. If your customers have a positive experience, they are more likely to return and recommend your service to friends and family, triggering positive word of mouth;
- Differentiate yourself from the competition. Very often those working in this sector experience an ongoing ‘price war’, with companies offering chauffeur driven hire services on the cheap in order to attract customers. Focusing on price is a damaging and potentially unsustainable strategy in the long run: you can focus on other differentiators, such as customer experience;
- Make more money. The direct consequence of a high quality service is that people tend to buy more often. This gives you a better chance of making more money;
- Build your brand. A good reputation developed over time is an excellent asset for your personal branding: you will gain image and credibility.
Where to start for a memorable customer experience
Defining a chauffeur hire customer experience involves a number of approaches and strategies to give your customers the best possible experience in your car. There are a few aspects to consider in order to do this in the best possible way: here they are.
#1 – Personalize your services
A true premium experience differs from any other because it is personalized, which means it is built around what the customer needs. What does this mean in practice?
It means that you tailor your service to each of your customers’ requests, creating a personalized experience for every little need. You do this by collecting information about your customers during the booking process. Details such as reason for travel, personal preferences or any special requests can give you insights into how to tailor their service.
But it doesn’t stop there: a personalized welcome can immediately put the customer at ease and let them know that you know their needs and are working to meet them.
The next step is to tailor the comfort of the vehicle to the customer’s preferences. For example, details such as temperature control, choice of music, availability of services such as Wi-Fi and even the selection of favorite magazines or snacks can make the customer happy and communicate that you care.
#2 – Listen to (and anticipate) your customers’ needs
Another essential part of a great customer experience is the ability to listen to and anticipate your customers’ needs.
The first thing to do is to have open communication from the very first contact. Ask specific questions to understand the customer’s needs and expectations. Focus not only on the answers, but also on the way the customer responds, to pick up some nuances about their preferences and concerns.
During the service, observe the customer’s behavior and reactions. Small things like the way they sit on board or their reaction to the temperature of the car can give you clues about how to improve their comfort, even without communicating.
Another highly valued skill is proactivity and the ability to anticipate customer needs. For example, if you know there will be traffic, plan an alternative route in advance. Or again, if you know that your customer will be traveling in a wheelchair, arrange your vehicle in advance to ensure comfort and safety.
#3 – Take care of every touch point
As we said, the customer experience is not ‘just’ about the journey itself, but starts with the first contact.
This means that every aspect of the service, from booking to arrival at the destination, must be handled with the utmost care and professionalism.
It all begins with the booking process. This is often the first direct contact a customer has with your service. Make sure it is simple and intuitive: systems such as LiMO allow customers to book directly online, reducing the stress of booking.
Other attention-grabbing features you can offer your customers include immediate confirmations, clear instructions and your availability to answer any questions or concerns. Ensuring a professional appearance, a friendly and open attitude and a thorough knowledge of the customer’s itinerary and programme will reinforce this.
#4 – Exceed expectations
Another way to improve a customer’s experience is to exceed their expectations. You can do this by offering something they don’t expect, such as extras on board (a small bottle of water and a chocolate) and small touches throughout the journey.
#5 – Use technology
Finally, the easiest way to deliver a personalized customer experience is through technology. There are tools that can improve the booking process, simplify the steps and optimize communication with the customer.
LiMO provides you with a management platform where customers can easily book your services, clearly see the options available and receive instant confirmations. This allows you to efficiently manage bookings, itineraries and invoicing, all from one central platform.
To find out more and improve the customer experience of a chauffeur-driven car hire service, contact us now.