The Rule of 1% is simply defined as adding to your customer service one percent at a time. Before you can do this, though, your team must be consistently adhering to your policies and procedures and be meeting your SLAs or it will never work. This one percent may seem small, but if you approach the customer experience transformation vision for your company with baby steps, you will benefit from huge returns over time. Remember, it’s not a sprint. Rather, it’s a marathon. Before you know it, you’ll be exceeding client expectations and cultivating more customer loyalty and generating more repeat business than ever before.
Avoid doing too much at once or you’ll set yourself up for failure. Think of the confidence you and your employees will have when you improve one percent each week. By the end of a year, you’ll have improved more than 50%!
While rules and standards are necessary for growth, it’s key to always be flexible with your best customers. For instance, most retailers only allow a set number of items into a dressing room to reduce the risk of shoplifting. However, doing so generally restricts the large percentage of people who are not stealing from you. Flexibility is the key to what you deliver to your customers and consistency is the key to how you deliver it.
The bottom line is customers rely on you to deliver what you promise. If you spend too much on bulky advertising that promises more than you can deliver, even your best intentions will unravel quickly and you will fail. Focus on your vision and take baby steps to turn your satisfied customers into “Raving Fans“.
I hope you’ve learned a lot about superior customer service and how it’s essential to your overall success. If you need help with any of the steps we’ve gone through over the last four lessons try our GUIDED TOUR and get access to some of the best resources, tools and business elevation coaches available.
In upcoming posts we’re going to explore strategies of landing larger, ideal clients and how to make them customers for life. Until then, to your success!
In our last post we talked about how to uncover what your customers want out of a positive shopping experience. Today, we’ll explore the concept of “Deliver +1” and how it can take your customer service to the next level. I’ve decided to split up this blog into two entries and the next related post will address the “1% Rule“.
Consistency is the key to any unparalleled customer service experience. If you want to take your satisfied customers to “Raving Fan” status, you absolutely must go above and beyond the average customer service experience.
There are three ways to develop consistency:
Simple and Clear Customer Service Options
We sometimes get so caught up in giving customers what they want that we begin to sail away from our original vision. Instead, stay true to your vision and offer one or two solid customer service techniques that will distinguish you from the competition. You need to fine-tune the current systems you’re using before you can add anything to the mix. There’s nothing worse than launching a new program when you haven’t even worked out the kinks of an old system.
Once you know what you’re going to offer, you need to have a system in place to execute it flawlessly every time. This system needs to utilize the right people in the right roles and responsibilities as well as technology that guarantees a positive experience every time. Emphasis needs to be placed on the results, which ultimately is the satisfaction of the customer.
Tremendous Staff Training
Once you have your system in place you need to train people to use it properly and efficiently. This helps your people deliver the results your customers are looking for. Since training is essential for the system to thrive and for all your people to work together cohesively, employee appreciation and ongoing training and continuing education will go a long way.
I hope this has given you a look into what you need to do in order to have a quality customer service process in place. If you need additional assistance, our RevSherpas Growth Academy has a wealth of resources, tools and coaching on not only client service, retention, and reactivation, but also lead generation, marketing, and business development. Check it out to elevate to the top of your industry TODAY!
In our last post, we talked about the first secret to building a solid customer service plan and how to decide what your vision is.
Today, we’ll talk about the second secret in transforming your satisfied customers to raving fans. To do so, you must know what your customers want. If you know who your customers are, you will know better how to serve them. Demographics are really important here. For instance, an upper-class woman in her 30’s is going to have completely different expectations than a working class man in his 50’s.
There are four main areas you need to consider and plan when determining what your customers want:
- Listen to Your Customers
- Ask Your Customers Sincerely
- Offer More than Just a Product/Service
- Know When to Ignore Them
These are all important when deciding what your customers want out of their evaluation, shopping, customer onboarding, ongoing marketing outreach, and service experience with your company.
Listen to Your Customers
You need to listen to both what they say and what they don’t say. Customers may say they want one thing and really mean something else. For example, if you customers are begging for lower prices, you may find out their real priority is quick delivery.
Also, listen to your “silent” customers. These are the customers that don’t bother to complain because the service is so awful they’ve just given up and don’t even feel like their voice matters. They feel unwanted and when a competitor shows up, they’ll be gone before you know it.
Lastly, you need to listen to customers who only reply with “fine”. These customers are similar to the “silent” customers in that they are so used to poor customer service they only give a monotone response.
Ask Your Customers Sincerely
If you aren’t sincere when you ask their opinion, they are going to see right through you. You may be thinking, “What about the customers who aren’t saying anything?” You need to ask them sincere questions that get them thinking about their experiences. Make them feel like you really care, and you should!
Offer More than Just a Product/Service
Your customers are looking for much more than a simple product or service. Rather, they are looking for an end-to-end customer experience that makes them feel good. They gauge every step of the marketing, sales, and service process with a value. When you take this into consideration and treat them like people, they will feel like they belong.
Know When to Ignore Them
You may think this goes beyond providing good customer service, but in reality you can’t give them everything and there are some prospects and customers that you will never make happy. You have to set limits and stick to them.
If your vision and company don’t meet the needs of the customer, they really are best suited somewhere else. This may be tough for you to accept when you are in start-up mode and aggressively trying to grow your business, but the more mature organizations successfully scale by only working with their ideal customer profile. They don’t waste time trying to please everyone. Though your intentions may be good, it’s just not possible and practical. Instead, go all out and consistently over-deliver to your current customer base and distinct target market. That’s much more sustainable and will give you far more peace of mind and much less headaches along your growth trajectory and customer journey.
These are the steps and tricks to figuring out what your customers want and how you can use them to formulate, refine, and solidify your customer service vision and plan.
If you get stuck, be sure to leverage our business breakthrough expertise and business elevation coaching services. Let us help you through the process to improve not just your client service, but also your entire customer experience.
Customer service is a pretty hot topic and can make or break your business. Consumers have little patience for lousy customer service and easily get tired of waiting in long lines, trying to get a live person on the line, going through an interrogation to return something or trying to communicate through a language barrier.
If you provide them with a simple, efficient, and pleasant experience, they will revisit your business over and over. More importantly, they will tell everyone they know!
There are three secrets to good customer service. The first one we’re going to conquer is knowing exactly what YOU want.
You are the captain of the ship and the visionary for the future of your business, so you need to have a clearly defined plan for your business and that includes customer service. There are three main goals you need to consider:
- It needs to be easy for your customers to do business with you. You can do this with advertised discounts, kiosks, your website, and other technology-based programs to help them shop.
- Doing business with you needs to be a warm and pleasant experience. Your staff has to be knowledgeable, approachable, warm and patient. Your customers need to feel like they are getting a good value for their time and money. Perceived value goes beyond the price of the products and extends to their shopping experience.
- Change your mindset and ask yourself “How can I NOT afford to do these things?” This shouldn’t be a question of expenses, but of making and keeping happy customers.
With these thoughts in mind, you also need to take a few things into consideration when deciding on the actual programs and standards you’ll put into place.
- Share your customer service vision with the rest of your staff.
- Connect your incentive programs and bonuses directly to customer service.
- Monitor the level of customer service your staff is providing.
- Know when you can ignore what your customers want.
- Continuously focus on your goals.
Now, that you know what you want, you can start thinking about how to meet those wants and create a positive customer service experience.
If you’re having a hard time deciding on what you want, the tools, resources and coaches in our RevSherpas Growth Academy GUIDED TOUR can help you define the wants and needs of your company in relation to customer service.
Though many businesses focus solely on attracting new customers, you NEED to spend a good chunk of your time retaining current and former customers. After all, these are people you already know to be a good sales potential…they’ve already bought from you!
Take the time to market and sell new products to your old customers and less time trying to sell old products to new customers and you will see a drastic change in your sales, customer quality and branding position.
Here are a couple of key elements to use to retain your current customers:
- Stay in contact: This means by phone, email, e-newsletter, in person-by pigeon if you have too!
- Post-Purchase Assurance: This means you need to follow up with customers. Your customers need to feel like they are being supported for their purchase and with the item they purchased. How many times have you purchased a product, then felt completely abandoned? Something as simple as a Thank You note with your contact or customer service information can go along way in retaining a great customer.
- Deals & Guarantees: Always offer your current customers the best deals and guarantees you have. Show them you appreciate their business or even come up with a club specifically to reward loyal customers. You can also do this with a preferred pricing option.
- Integrity: Using good business practices and simply upholding integrity, dignity and honesty go along way with customers. Let’s face it, there’s a lot of swindling and junk out there and the safer and more confident you make your customers feel, the more they will trust you and that makes for an amazingly supportive and loyal customer.
There are three cornerstone ideas to a successful business:
- Quality product/service
- Offering useful products/services that solve a problem for or enhance the life of a customer
- Offer subjects your customers find interesting
Use this approach of educating your customers and offering them real information and insight and you will be rewarded with loyalty and success.
Stop wasting all your time on new prospects while your current customers fall by the wayside!
As Jay Abraham says, “Your best prospects are your existing customers. If you’ve been putting all your marketing efforts into acquiring new customers, stop and divert some of your resources into reselling, upselling, cross-selling to those same customers. In every way possible – through package inserts, regular mailings, special offers – stay in touch with those customers and get them used to buying from you.”
So, there it is! Remember, our FREE test drive can help you put together the resources and tools to do exactly that. We can help you educate your customers and you can watch the benefits pay off many-fold.