Take a Moment and Wear Your Customer’s Shoes by guest author, Kellie DAndrea, “The All Stuff, No Fluff Marketing Authority” In today’s very competitive market customer loyalty is on the decline simply because business owners are not pulling out the red carpet to improve their customer’s experience. Those that are using the “business as usual” method are at high risk of losing their customer base.
With the plethora of choices available to your customers, you want to take a moment and look at your business through your customer’s eyes and put yourself in their shoes to see if you are making a difference with your customers. First, are your customers facing the same economic pressures as many others?
Re-evaluate the pricing model
If so, now is an excellent time to re-evaluate your pricing model to see if there are opportunities to offer discounts or add additional value. Even 1% will make a difference and show that you are sensitive to their situation but want to retain them as a customer because you care.
Look at your process and see if you can cut your costs and streamline the process. If you can reduce your cost and pass along those savings to your customers, you are showing them you are a team player committed to improvement.
Do you conserve time and energy?
Companies everywhere are downsizing, and unemployment is at an all-time high resulting in more work for less available resources. Do you offer a solution to save time or energy? Be sensitive to the fact that your customers are busy and often overwhelmed. By contributing to help or merely having a sympathetic ear will move you closer to the inner circle and create a more trusting relationship.
Are you standing out?
Your customers are being bombarded with calls and offers from the competition. Do you differentiate yourself, and are you offer real value? The definition of value comes from the financial side of the business, so if you are providing real value, you should be able to calculate precisely what that value is and what it means for your customers. Evaluate your customer experience and ask yourself if you are providing a Ritz Carlton type of approach or a Dollar Store approach.
Now is an excellent time to be a customer of your own business and experience it for yourself and look for ways to improve it. Review your marketing material and upgrade your message to appeal to the challenges your customers are facing today and to communicate the real value you are bringing to the relationship. Offer special discounts, more services, or small gifts. You would be amazed at how far a simple thank you gift will take you.
Lastly, don’t forget about simple manners.
A please, a thank you, or a sympathetic ear can move your relationship along and keep a customer for life. People want to partner with others who they trust and can build a long term relationship with.