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.
Today I’m going to talk about the life cycle of a business and how to get the most out of each cycle while also extending the lifespan of your business.
The four different stages of a business life cycle are:
- Growing Pains
We’ll talk a little about what each of these cycles means and how they can each help expand your business’ lifespan.
This is generally considered the technician’s phase, which is the owner. At this point, the relationship between the business and the owner is that of a parent and new baby. There is an impenetrable bond that is necessary to determine the path your business will follow. The key is to know your business must grow in order to flourish. You cannot stay in this stage forever.
In this stage you need to start bringing your support staff together to delegate to and allow growth to happen. The first line of defense is your technician, as he or she needs to bring a certain level of technical experience. However, this cycle really belongs to the manager. Intense long-term planning needs to start and accelerate, and a relationship should be built with the entrepreneur to plan for the future.
There’s a point in every business when business explodes and becomes chaotic. This is referred to as growing pains. It’s a good problem to have, but a problem nonetheless. You are often faced with a number of choices:
- Avoid growth and stay small
- Go broke
- Push forward into the next cycle
The last cycle is maturity, though this doesn’t mean the end of your business. Your passion for growth must continue in order for your business to succeed. You need to keep an entrepreneurial perspective in order to push your business forward.
You see how all four of these cycles are connected and depend on a strong foundation for each one of them for your business to be and continue to be successful. All three of your key roles must also work together to navigate and advance through these cycles.
If you’re having trouble putting together your business life cycles and figuring out which of the key roles you fit into, try our GUIDED TOUR and work with one of our amazing coaches.
Today I’d like to chat about the different types of support staff you need and what makes them so important. There are essentially three key roles that need to be filled to set your business up for success:
- The Technician
- The Manager
- The Entrepreneur
All of these roles need to be played simultaneously by different people with the right talents. It’s all about balance.
This person represents the present and all that needs to be done for the physical aspects of the business building process. They are the “doer”. This is usually the most visible person of the entire operation.
This person represents the past and works to fix problems through learning from past mistakes. They are the practical side of the business and is in charge of putting together the business and overseeing the planning.
This person represents the future and the vision for the business. They are responsible for the creative side of the business and are always considering ways to enhance products/service, business image, branding and more.
All three of these characters are essential in the success of any business. To build a solid foundation from the start, you need to work harder to find the right people to put in these roles. Obviously, you need to be one of these key people, but ensure you find the role that fits your skills and talents, not necessarily what you THINK you should be doing.
This may be a hard process for you as you will need to relinquish some control over the business and instill trust in people to allow them to do their jobs.
Remember, our business coaches can help you through this entire process and teach you how to avoid falling victim to e-myths when you try our GUIDED TOUR.