Customer Service- Why Bother?

Many companies spend a huge amount of their budget on attracting new customers. Just look around at the number of promotions you see everyday. There is pressure on business to reduce costs and marketing is one of the departments guaranteed to be hit. It is a matter now of looking at the breakdown of the business and examining how the marketing budget can be most effectively spent.

It is well known in marketing that it is much more expensive to attract a new customer than to keep your existing customer.  Examine everything that your business does and ensure that it focuses on the customers and their needs. Really understand what they want and follow this up. Make sure that the product is delivered on time, it is what they wanted, it lives up to expectation. Focus on building the relationship, customers will tell others and that is so much more powerful that your promotions.

The marketing lesson is to really get under the skin of your customers and build that relationship. So how to do it?

Understand their needs, make the most of any customer interaction, use customer service teams to find out as much as possible about the need and how well your business is meeting that need.

Ask your customer to compare you and your competitors.

Build a benchmark of good performance.  Such as delivery in 5 days or call back in 24 hours. Opportunity to up grade, learn more, build your own are all examples of how businesses have adapted and changed.

If we look at examples of really good customer service and then examine the performance of the business. You would not be surprised to learn that companies that score well on customer service are keeping customers, up selling to them and performing better.

Recent winners of awards are First Direct that scored highest in the banking sector in a survey conducted bySatmetrix. First Direct scored 42% satisfaction compared with an industry norm of -4%.

Virgin and Sky scored well in the ISP business. Still in mobiles O2 did the business. Apple iPhone was miles ahead of the industry with a score of 67% compared to the industry average of  18%. This is a really good example of marketing practice

Customer service is so much more than dealing with complaints. It offers business the chance to really understand their customers, analyse their needs, build new products or services. It will also reduce costs and focus on making the business more effective.

So deliver and build the level of customer service. Do what you promise and make sure you know what to promise