When it comes to delivering exceptional service, there’s a big competition among companies. Your products have a great price–quality ratio? That’s great, but is your customer service also that good? If it’s not, you can be sure that most customers who buy a product from you, won’t come back in the future. Customers are getting more and more attractive offers from different providers all the time. Not only they get better deals based on price but they are also tempted by the quality of service. If you want to be one of the companies that uses customer service as their leverage, there’s no other way than to implement the customer centric culture in your company. Here’s how you can do it.
1. Train people in customer serviceIf you want to create a customer–centric culture you need to start on the inside, with your employees. Each person who works in your company should get customer service training. All your employees should know how to communicate with customers, what kind of sentences to use, and how to solve simple cases. This training will teach them basics of customer service and show them that customers are the core of the business. You may ask, why all your employees should have training in customer service? Well, even graphic designers talk with customers from time to time. And besides, if they design for your company, they should know the product and customers’ needs, right? If each employee will have the customers’ satisfaction in the back of their head, there will be no unsolved tickets and no emails will be left without an answer. You probably heard of Zappos, who deliver outstanding customer service. Their brand is inspiring customer centric culture. It’s so essential that they’ll fire the best people if they aren’t aligned with it. Tony Hsieh, Zappos CEO says: “Even if a person is great at their job, even if they’re superstar at their job if they’re bad for our culture we’ll fire them for that reason alone. And performance reviews are 50% based on whether you’re living and inspiring the Zappos culture in others.”
2. Create awareness in your organizationIf you want customers to be the most important part of your business, you need to put them first. What does it mean? You need to create a “customer satisfaction is a key” philosophy in a clear and concise matter. In other words, make it official. Praise customer satisfaction philosophy out loud, on your website and on your social media sites. But also make sure actions follow words. Educate employees about the benefits of customer centricity and the lack of it. Give examples of companies who deliver great service and earn the most in their industry, write blog posts about it, make people familiar with statistics. According to Forrester’s Customer Experience Index, companies with a customer centric culture have a higher valuation compared to their competitors. This observation is backed by further statistics. For example, the probability of selling to an existing customer is 60-70%. For new prospects, it’s just 5-20%. Creating a customer centric culture in your company requires awareness about it and using these facts can help you.
3. Make customer satisfaction a priorityCustomers are the most important stakeholders in your business. Their satisfaction plays a significant role in how much revenue they generate for your business. A study by InfoQuest found that a “totally satisfied customer” contributes 2.6 times more revenue than a “somewhat satisfied customer.” Plus, a “totally satisfied customers” contributes 14 times more revenue than a “somewhat dissatisfied customer.” I guess, sometimes you need to sacrifice something to help deliver great service. For example, you need to shorten your meeting or answer emails on vacations. But at the end of the day it’s worth it. If a manager does it, he or she shows that customers’ issues can’t wait. They give a clear sign that customer satisfaction is not just some statement that nobody cares about, but it should be a real priority for the whole company. When employees see that kind of behaviour in their managers they are more likely to follow their example.
4. Reward employees who deliver high customer satisfactionTo have a customer centric culture at your organization, you need to have an engaged team that sees personal gains from customer satisfaction. You can reward employees who give outstanding service and always go the extra mile to satisfy customers’ needs. Providing customer service through LiveChat makes it easier, it allows you to see which agents achieve the highest customer satisfaction score (rated by customers). But you can also take other aspects into consideration. “At Pitney Bowes, employees recognized by name in favorable surveys or feedback receive a gift certificate, and at GoDaddy.com, one lucky employee’s bonus is a paid year’s worth of rent or mortgage payments. Circles, a provider of virtual concierge services, gives agents the ability to accumulate points based on customer satisfaction surveys and redeem them for prizes, including additional time off.” You should also recognize people behind the scenes, who don’t have a direct contact with customers because they surely deserve it, like the graphic designer mentioned before. Southwest Airlines, every Valentine’s Day, awards a Hero of the Heart as a tribute to a “behind the scenes star work group” that does not have a direct customer contact.
5. Share customer successDon’t make your relationship with customers end once you sell them a product. Support your customers’ success! When your customers achieve something big, celebrate their progress, congratulate them, share your thoughts on social media. One of the best ideas is to write a customer success story with the use of your product. It helps you to nurture a relationship with customers. It also shows the whole company that customers are the core of your business and you are there to help them, to make their life easier and better. Their satisfaction is the key.
Customer centricity as a goalCustomer centricity is a must if you want to have satisfied customers and successful business. Some businesses take it so seriously, that they even fire employees if they don’t fit with their customer centric culture. Sounds harsh, but that’s what it takes if customer satisfaction is your goal. Because as long as you have happy and satisfied customers your business will be fine.
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