Have you ever given a customer a product, an upgrade or a service for nothing? Something for which you could have sent a bill or an invoice, but out of the goodness in your heart, you provided for free?
Next time, if you're going to provide something for free (an estimate, for example), send the customer a bill but cross out the amount owed and write one of the following:
- "This one's on us!"
- "No payment due!"
- "No charge!"
- "Complimentary ... this is part of our commitment to better serve you!"
- "May this add happiness to your home. Enjoy with our compliments!"
This approach lets your customer know that you invested time or money. It also diminishes the potential that the customer will always expect to get something for nothing. And most important, this strategy demonstrably creates a business advantage called psychic debt.
Psychic debt creates a psychological sense of commitment or loyalty to you and your business and can be far more valuable than a customer's actual debt to you. - Jeff Blackman, business consultant, Blackman & Associates Inc.