Why the Fitness Industry Needs to Go to Specsavers

Recently I booked into Specsavers for an eye test. I had this black ‘floater’ in my left eye, which I had had for over a week and I was growingly increasingly concerned. 

The three-stage process I went through at Specsavers was exceptional. The initial consultation was sensitive, empathetic and spot on - the third question I was asked, ‘have you had a recent bang on the head?’ - Yes!

The physical tests were explained clearly and inspired confidence and the third person I saw gave me such an informative insight into my predicament and left me relieved describing in technical detail and also in layman’s terms that what I had experienced was called posterior vitreous detachment, which is relatively harmless and not something much worse. 

What a relief! But also what a phenomenal customer experience! 

Specsavers demonstrated an outstanding empathy for the customer in terms of needs and fears.

The whole customer engagement process had been meticulously thought through, the consultative process geared to achieve maximum insight in minimum time and the staff exceptionally well trained to connect emotionally with the customer, put them immediately at ease and make them feel valued and special. 

Contrast this with the experience I have gained in visiting numerous gyms in the last two years.

I am usually greeted by a dismissive ‘OK, follow me’, rarely have I been asked my motivation for visiting the gym in the first place but instead am subjected to a stream of compliments about the gym’s facility and investment in equipment and why the monthly gym subscription gives such value for money.

What a contrast in experience! Why is there no empathy for the customer? Why no formal training in customer service? Why no emphasis on the emotional connection? 

To the majority of people, the gym is the most alien and frightening of environments, but so is the experience of going for an eye test worried stiff that you might have a serious eye problem. 

Is the difference that Specsavers don’t just want my money? Do they also want to make a difference, to deliver real value and a create a loyal customer who comes back again and again? 

I certainly will.

The majority of gym operators, on the other hand, set their horizons at a lower level, even seemingly regard customers as an occupational hazard.

Is it no wonder that gym take up in this country is so pathetically low? 

Take a take a trip to Specsavers guys and realise the value and impact of outstanding customer engagement process and first class service. 

I don't just go to Specsavers for the spectacles, neither do I just go to the gym for the weights, my decision making is based on much, much more that cannot be seen but experienced, and how I am made to feel, will determine how long I will stay as a customer.