Everyone lives by a certain set of rules and businesses are no different. Where some people prioritize family over friends and vanilla over chocolate, businesses also have their set of rules they operate by. In today’s business landscape, the most virtuous of codes to live by is putting the customer first.
With so many competitive products and services, the customer experience can be make-or-break for many businesses. Luckily, there are a few easy tips that you can implement today, or at least soon, to make your business more customer-centric.
Here are some we picked out.
Just like that one teacher’s class in high school that took attendance every day, you’ll have to do your homework to succeed. For a business, homework is research into the market you’re competing in, research into the product you’re selling, and, most importantly, customer research to find out why people are buying. Take the time to go out and talk to your customers, because you’ll be surprised by what you can learn.
One of the best examples of this would be Arm and Hammer. The company was founded in 1852 and solely produced and sold baking soda. That is until mid-century America found dozens of other
uses for baking soda. People started putting it in their laundry detergent, their toothpaste, and even cat litter. Arm and Hammer listened to their customers and decided to produce these products themselves, infused with their patented baking soda.
This product expansion was incredibly successful and, in fact, in 2018 approximately 55% of Arm and Hammer’s sales revenue came from personal care products, not their baking soda. This company has made itself a consumer good giant simply by listening to their customers.
Every customer your business interacts with needs to feel like an individual. Building customer profiles ensure that each a completely customized experience can be delivered to each customer.
From a sales perspective, this means using a CRM software to keep track of all your leads, and writing down important notes for each person you talk to. At Summatti, we currently use Hubspot to track every interaction we have. By building out these profiles for every customer and lead, it means that when anyone from our team reaches out to them, we can offer a completely customized experience and message for each person. People will remember when they’re not treated like another number.
In 1982, Johnson and Johnson had a defect with their best selling product, Tylenol. 7 people in the Chicago area had died after taking Tylenol that had traces of cyanide. While this was most likely only a small batch of contaminated product, J&J took swift action to pull 31 million bottles off all the shelves across America, costing them over $100 million, and plummeting their stock. Why take such drastic measures? Because they put their customers first, no matter the repercussions. When faced with decisions in life, we look back
to our set of values; your business has to be no different. Put your customers first and revolve your decisions around them, the rest will follow. Johnson and Johnson’s stock fell at first, but they recovered within 2 months and blew past their last position. Loyal companies are rewarded with loyal customers.
Train your support agents to listen and learn
Companies that prioritize their customers still rarely get to interact with them directly. Even targeted marketing and personalized email blasts are indirect compared to being able to speak with your very own customers over the phone. That’s why it’s integral for your customer support team to ensure they are providing the best customer experience possible to every customer. The simple fix to this is to train your support team to really listen to each customer. Tell them to ask for the customer’s name and use it often. Be genuine, sincere, and make sure your customers feel seen. Also equally as important, make sure
your company has a system in place for processing customer complaints and feedback, and turning them into actions. There’s no sense of listening to your customers if you don’t plan on taking their advice. After all, you’re making a product for your customers, so you should make sure you’re making what they want.