Meeting customers’ expectations is integral to your company’s ability to compete with other corporations in your industry. Understand what your customers want from you and establish targeted processes to deliver it consistently.
Making the Right Introduction
Right at the inception of every customer relationship before any money has changed hands, your communications with your customers have to be positive, relevant, personalized. If people perceive your marketing materials to be out of tune with their practical needs or overwrought with sales gimmicks geared toward the masses, it’s almost certainly going to make them hold you in low esteem.
Personalize marketing communications for a variety of personas. Create customer profiles for active and prospective customers based on demographic qualities, shopping history, and other predictive metrics. This can help you interact with a large base of unique individuals or businesses in a way that really speaks to them and captures their interest.
Basically, everyone who you do business with expects that all of the work that goes into a transaction should fall on your shoulders. They can’t feel as though they’re putting in more work than they should reasonably have in order to finalize transactions or troubleshoot service issues. Furthermore, they want companies to make substantive efforts to minimize foreseeable service issues proactively.
Your business’ customer effort score is a good indicator of how effectively you’re engaging people. It reveals whether your systems, policies, and service make it possible for them to achieve their objectives easily. Tracking these indices gives you important information for internal quality assurance protocols and compliance analyses.
Moreover, this type of scoring is closely aligned with people’s general openness towards making purchases from your business in the future. If systematic or troubleshooting deficiencies are putting your customers through the ringer, they’ll think twice before looking to your company for help in the future and be more likely to reach out to one of your competitors.
Putting measures in place geared towards preventing problems is typically far less time consuming and expensive than the measures that you would have to take to address them after the fact. Of course, despite strong infrastructure and meticulous attention to detail, some of your team members are going to make mistakes at one point or another. Likewise, a shortfall in your technological infrastructure or a problem with an upgrade could represent a serious source of frustration for the folks doing business with you. When something goes wrong, customers expect you to make it right as quickly as possible.
Create clear guidelines for dealing with help requests. Customer service associates need straightforward directives for resolving common service issues. Create standards for the timeframe for each type of response. Create protocols for communication that reassure people that you’re working on a resolution. Make policies advising representatives on when and how to escalate customer service issues that have them flummoxed.
Nobody can give you better insights into how well you’re faring with customer service than the customers themselves. Make requests for feedback a part of your follow-up communications with customers.
People appreciate hearing that you care about their opinion. Their input can show you what’s working well for you. Affirming that websites are intuitive and customer service representatives are responsive, for example, lets you know if you’re consistently hitting key benchmarks with positive customer experiences. Also, in the event that someone has had a poor experience, you want to be the first to hear about it. A feedback request gives people a platform to air grievances. When people want to vent, it’s better to have them do that to your face rather than staging a tantrum onto a third-party review site.
Is the customer always right? Honestly, no. You can’t pretend that your customers’ opinions and estimates are accurate one hundred percent of the time, and you can’t very well do whatever they command. While the customer isn’t always right, you have to recognize that the customer always has expectations. Understanding them and determining if you’re doing enough to meet them will ultimately help to make your company more competitive.