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Don't judge a customer by their cover.

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Post Fri Mar 15, 2019 8:47 pm

Don't judge a customer by their cover.

We're probably all guilty of it. Customer pops in, and you immediately dismiss them, a time waster, wanting something for nothing. Sometimes that may be true.

However, a pleasant surprise, when what at first looks like the local drug dealer comes in, they come across as stoned.

Naturally it didn't get to the top of the list, and they popped back in. The lad appreciated we were busy, and that his job wasn't urgent but he wanted us to do it.

I gave him a price, including VAT.

Next day the same lad comes in, with a bundle of cash, there's the deposit, can you sort a design out. I hadn't mentioned deposits, half expecting him to run a mile.

This continued, the lad had paid in full before we had even cut the vinyl, which we had in stock anyway.

We're now quoting on his shop sign..he wants the price ASAP, so can sort his money out and get some to us.

I feel a little guilty, that I judged this lad, and really he's alright. Listens to our advice, is happy to pay a fair price, and pays without being prompted.

Anyone else has a similar experience where they mis judged a customer?
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Post Fri Mar 15, 2019 9:34 pm

Re: Don't judge a customer by their cover.

Once years ago but in retail. Wife and husband came in, not exactly looking fresh or well off. Sold them what they wanted but the lower end of the scale. Got to the till and I’ve never seen so much cash in a wallet. All 50’s to. Enough for a house deposit in there. My sale.. £42

I also got lectured for invoicing a job up front today (rolls eyes).
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Post Fri Mar 15, 2019 9:40 pm

Re: Don't judge a customer by their cover.

Not really miss judging,

I had an old couple come in a couple of years back for some golden wedding invites, not normally my sort of thing so pointed them in the direction of a small printers down the road.

They came back 20 min later asking if I was ok to do them as they were spoken too really badly at the printers as it was such a small job. So one photo scan and a bit of type setting later 40 invites done, only charged a small amount and the old couple were over the moon with them.

2 weeks later there son came in after a glowing review from his parents asking for vehicle graphics and business stationery. 60+ full wagon wraps and 10’s of thousands of letterheads, business card, brochures and more recommendations to other good customers.

I think always be polite and helpful and you shouldn’t go wrong, you never know who your talking to.
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Post Fri Mar 15, 2019 9:52 pm

Re: Don't judge a customer by their cover.

A few years ago I had three customers in our reception at once. Staff on lunch and I was running about daft getting keys for the customer's vans etc.
One of the customers was picking up a small sign... a guy I had never seen before squeezes in at the back of the rest of them and as I am handing over the sign, this guy loudly asks "how much is that sign?"
I glanced at him and continued writing and said: "ill be with you in 2 ticks"...
He replies, "I am in a rush and I am double parked"... "how much????"
I knew the price as I had just given the other guy his bill that was now leaving, so I told this guy the price and bumped £20 on it. he says OK, give me 5 of those and I will pop in with artwork in an hour. I never expected to see him again!
30 minutes pass and in he walks with a USB stick, handing me it he says, "can I pick them up about 5pm?" I was going to say no chance, 5pm tomorrow night at earliest. But it was only 11am... so I said "as long as the artwork is ready to print, then yes!" after all, I had £100 extra on top of the proper price right away...
That customer has spent over £100,000 since then on vans, signs, trucks and exhibition stand work... he is also a good friend now and I go for a beer with him occasionally. Funny thing is, I joke with him that he was nearly told to F***k off that day. :smiles: :smiles:
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Post Fri Mar 15, 2019 10:07 pm

Re: Don't judge a customer by their cover.

Reminds of a similar story Rob....

Friday afternoon back in 2011 a very big chap from Birmingham walks in wanting a sign for a new shop in Stratford.

We give him a quote for £3500 based on the rough sizes he had on a tissue.

Told him he could have it in 3 days, his reply can I have it tonight at 10pm....Our reply NO sorry!

Walks out and comes back 10 mins later with an envelope and handed us 5k

Gob Smacked...Fire up the CNC machine and get his sign ready for a fitting that very night.

Spent over £240K with us in 16 months.

He walked in with shorts, unshaven and food down his shirt....The very same guy is a dear friend now and lent me his Rolls Royce for my sisters wedding a few years later.

NEVER EVER take people on first appearances!!
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Post Thu Mar 21, 2019 8:36 am

Re: Don't judge a customer by their cover.

Not sign related but I used to sell cars. 2 day quite a few years ago now a really scruffy man came in and spoke with a colleague, he instantly dismissed him and got on with a silly task he was doing. I spoke with him 10 minutes later and sold him a car. Found out that he was one of the wealthiest people in the town and owned a huge farm. He became a very good customer and sent so many customers to me. He eventually told me, he dresses like that on purpose to see how he's dealt with
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Post Thu Mar 21, 2019 10:13 am

Re: Don't judge a customer by their cover.

Nice stories, shame it dosent work the other way round. The amount of well heeled smartly dressed customers ive had through the door that you end up chasing for months for payment from is unreal. Horsey people are the worst of the lot
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Post Sun Mar 24, 2019 11:20 pm

Re: Don't judge a customer by their cover.

That's why their smartly dressed Jean, they've used yours and other peoples money to buy their fancy things. My sisters a personal banker and while she won't revel names she says you wouldn't believe the debts some of the "rich" people in our town owe!!!
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Post Mon Mar 25, 2019 10:17 am

Re: Don't judge a customer by their cover.

Sorry but I'm not buying it. 9 times out of 10 a scruff's a scruff, and a gentleman's a gentleman. I can usually sniff out the bad guys :lol:

(That's probably why they keep on picking on me to do jury service :awkward: )
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Post Mon Mar 25, 2019 9:58 pm

Re: Don't judge a customer by their cover.

Phill Fenton wrote:Sorry but I'm not buying it. 9 times out of 10 a scruff's a scruff, and a gentleman's a gentleman. I can usually sniff out the bad guys :lol:

(That's probably why they keep on picking on me to do jury service :awkward: )

I don’t mind the scruffs to be honest Phill, got plenty of solid gentlemen that frequent my place in rigger boots & no ( oh i swore ) in their trousers & you can bet the farm on them. Only problem is the constant vacuuming required when they visit.
The sharp suit types rarely do the leg work themselves, leaving it to the minions most of the time, but yes I agree, a handshake & looking in the eyes has served me well so far. That, & a deposit.
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Post Tue Apr 16, 2019 10:22 am

Re: Don't judge a customer by their cover.

Yesterday I had someone drop by telling me I had been recommended and he had 15 vans to do. Every fibre of my being screamed that he was bullshitting me but I was reminded of this thread and decided to go with it..

He assured me he would get his graphic designer to send me the artwork for the 15 vans and when could I do them?

Meanwhile could I sell him 5 metres of silver vinyl to wrap the windows of his car to match the silver bodywork.

My senses still screamed bullshitter but I was still thinking of this thread and the many riches others had earned through not trusting their gut feeling so I sold him the 5 metres of vinyl, gave him my business card, and am now awaiting the artwork for the 15 vans...

But I won't hold my breath and promise to ride a Horse butt naked through Livingston town centre should the vans appear :awkward:
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Post Tue Apr 16, 2019 10:27 am

Re: Don't judge a customer by their cover.

The thought of anyone being butt naked anywhere near a horse is a prisonable offence down our way Phill
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Post Tue Apr 16, 2019 4:27 pm

Re: Don't judge a customer by their cover.

Would you believe it...I've just been sent the artwork for the 15 vans...
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Post Tue Apr 16, 2019 4:31 pm

Re: Don't judge a customer by their cover.

My eyes!!!!! How do I delete the original post?
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Post Wed Apr 17, 2019 10:06 am

Re: Don't judge a customer by their cover.

Phill Fenton wrote:Would you believe it...I've just been sent the artwork for the 15 vans...


I hate to think what you were searching for when you found that photo, Phill! :shocked:
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Post Wed Apr 17, 2019 11:01 am

Re: Don't judge a customer by their cover.

Remember to delete your browser search history Phill, you don’t want the next user to get the wrong idea
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Post Wed Apr 17, 2019 11:07 am

Re: Don't judge a customer by their cover.

Or the right idea !!!! :smiles:
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Post Wed Apr 17, 2019 11:13 am

Re: Don't judge a customer by their cover.

NeilRoss wrote:
Phill Fenton wrote:Would you believe it...I've just been sent the artwork for the 15 vans...


I hate to think what you were searching for when you found that photo, Phill! :shocked:


He didn't need to search, he had it bookmarked under his favourites! :wink: :lol:

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