Actioning Customer Feedback: The Secret to Turning Difficult Customers into Loyal Advocates

Difficult customers!

Every business has them, and no one likes to get customer feedback that is challenging to handle. So what’s the secret to turning difficult customers into loyal advocates?

The most important thing to remember is not to think of customers as difficult but merely as angry, frustrated or disappointed with the product or service they bought from us.

You may never have considered this, but customer complaints are actually a gift! Research shows that for every customer who complains, there are 20 or more who don’t complain and just switch to your competitor!

Wouldn’t you prefer to have the chance to retain their loyalty? That’s why you should do everything possible to respond quickly and positively to every complaint.

 

The Gift of Customer Complaints

When a customer reaches out with a complaint, they are offering you the chance to improve and strengthen your business in several ways:

  1. You get the chance to put things right and make them happy.
  2. You get the chance to stop them churning/leaving for the competition.
  3. You get the chance to delight them so they share their experience with others and build your positive image.

Let’s look at these in more detail, using recent examples to demonstrate best practices:

Correcting Mistakes:

  • Netflix: Netflix is known for actively monitoring customer complaints and using advanced data analytics to identify and correct issues. When they encountered streaming problems in the past, they quickly addressed them by upgrading their infrastructure, leading to improved service quality. This is a great example of exceeding the customer’s expectations, creating even greater delight.
  • Toyota: Toyota has a history of addressing product quality concerns promptly. In the case of the 2010 recall, due to accelerator pedal issues, Toyota swiftly communicated with affected customers, provided fixes, and introduced enhanced safety measures.
  • Samsung: Samsung’s handling of the Galaxy Note 7 battery issue is another prime example. They recalled and replaced the faulty devices, prioritizing customer safety and satisfaction. This transparent and rapid response helped mitigate the impact on their brand reputation.

Customers expect you to put things right. They don’t expect more than that in most cases. So going above and beyond will immediately change a negative into a positive event that the customer will share with their friends and family.

 

Preventing Churn:

  • Comcast: Comcast has made efforts to reduce customer churn by offering flexible plans and improved customer service. They introduced “Xfinity Mobile” to bundle mobile services with cable and internet, aiming to keep customers within their ecosystem.
  • Adobe: Adobe’s transition to a subscription-based model for Creative Cloud faced initial resistance. However, they addressed customer concerns and objections by continuously improving the platform, leading to higher customer retention rates.
  • Spotify: Spotify uses personalized playlists and recommendations to engage users. By analyzing user data and preferences, they reduce churn by providing a tailored experience that keeps users coming back for more.

This last example shows how a company quite often has the data it needs to better … Click to continue reading

Top Posts of 2023 on Customer Centricity

Here at C3Centricity, we publish books (Winning Customer Centricity), articles and training on customer centricity, because we’re passionate about helping companies to successfully adopt a customer-first strategy.

Since we founded C3Centricity in early 2011, one of our traditions has been to share the most popular posts on customer experience at the beginning of each new year. 

This past year has been particularly successful for C3Centricity, with many of our newest posts getting the top scores globally! This is quite tough for a blog that has been running for almost 13 years and highlights the quality of the content we share with you each month.

Of course, there are also a few perennials that have been appearing in our top 10 list for years, like insight development and customer observation. Since no brand is successful without a foundational insight, and customer understanding is its major essential element, these two will always be popular – they also are on Google’s first page, which certainly helps and confirms the quality of their content.

So let’s have a look at the Top 10 list in 2023, and see if your own favourites are there. If not, then please let us know in the comments. Thanks.  

#1. Five Brilliant Ideas to Boost Your Insight Development

Boost your insight developmentThis post regularly appears in the top three posts on C3Centricity. This shows the quality of its recommendations and content. And the importance of business insights. 

Ever wondered why you struggle to develop actionable insights? This post shares some of the main reasons why even large companies sometimes fail at this essential art. Then, it offers some suggested solutions to help you.

Insights are the foundation on which every single successful brand is built. If your brands are lacking strong positive growth, they are probably missing that insight that will make them powerhouses.

So it is vital that you learn how to develop them and then how to action them in your communications and innovation. Again, if you struggle to action your insights, you’re most certainly missing one of the steps covered in this post.

To stimulate your thinking, the article includes many real-world examples of how great insights can be turned into powerful ad campaigns that connect with customers and motivate them to buy.

If you’re ready to finally learn how to develop actionable business insights, check out our online course on the topic HERE.

#2. Five Rules of Customer Observation for Greater Success

Measure your company image

This post has also been among the top articles on C3Centricity for many years. It is a cornerstone post that is regularly updated to remain highly relevant in today’s marketplace.

Its popularity clearly shows the need we all have to understand how to get up close and personal with our customers – the right way.

The five rules it includes are easy to follow and will make every occasion to watch and listen to your customers so much more interesting and valuable.

And if you want to learn how to watch

Click to continue reading

Using AI to Delight Your Customers With More AI (Authentic Interactions)

Artificial Intelligence (AI) has become an integral part of our daily lives and has revolutionized how we interact with technology and businesses. This post discusses how to use AI to enhance customer experience with another AI, authentic interactions.

Over the past year, the AI landscape has witnessed a significant shift from AI versus AI competitions to AI working in collaboration with AI. Although AI-driven interactions have made significant progress, it is time to take them to the next level by integrating authentic interactions with AI to deliver exceptional customer experiences.

Let’s examine how AI has evolved in customer relations and explore ten ways in which businesses can integrate authentic interactions with AI to enhance customer experiences.

Get ready to delve into a world where technology meets humanity, where the future of customer engagement is not AI versus AI, but AI working in tandem with AI.

 

The Evolution of AI in Authentic Interactions with Customers

Over the years, AI has greatly evolved in customer interactions. Initially, AI was used to automate monotonous tasks and to provide quick and efficient responses to customer inquiries. However, the early AI systems were often inflexible and could not understand and adapt to the subtleties of human communication.

With the advances in AI technology, we have seen the emergence of chatbots and virtual assistants that can engage in more natural and context-aware conversations.

This development has led to a shift from the traditional AI versus AI approach, where AI tries to outsmart or outperform other AIs, to a more collaborative approach known as AI + AI.

 

AI + AI: The Future of Customer Engagements

The combination of AI and AI marks a significant change in how businesses utilize AI technologies for authentic customer interactions. Instead of setting one AI system against another, businesses are now concentrating on integrating multiple AI components to function together fluidly, ultimately improving customer experiences.

Here are ten methods to integrate authentic interactions with AI to achieve this goal:

1. Embracing Emotional Intelligence (EI) is crucial for AI. It involves training algorithms to recognize and respond to human emotions by understanding cues such as tone of voice, choice of words, and facial expressions.

This helps AI to gauge a customer’s emotional state and respond appropriately with empathy and support. When AI acknowledges their feelings, customers feel heard and valued and offer personalized solutions.

I believe pre-programmed responses should be banned as they are easily recognized and do more harm than good. Call centre representatives should be given the autonomy to do what’s best for the customer within certain guidelines. If you’d like to read more about delivering best-in-class customer service, read the post: “7 Ways to Deliver Awesome Customer Service & Build Loyal Advocates”

2. Human-AI hybrid teams combine the best of both worlds by utilizing the strengths of humans and AI systems. AI is highly efficient in handling routine tasks and queries, allowing for quick and seamless responses to customers.

However, when complex issues arise or when human empathy

Click to continue reading

Today’s Toughest Marketing Challenge is Not Achieving Customer Satisfaction!

Customer satisfaction doesn’t last as long as it used to.

We’ve all become extremely demanding, thanks to constant new offers of innovation and novelty.

Today, we want things better, faster and sometimes cheaper as well. And customer satisfaction is becoming insufficient to drive growth alone. Companies need to deliver more, a lot more!

I was recently in the US, and as seems to be the norm these days, the hotel in which I stayed asked me to rate my stay afterwards. I completed their form, giving only four and five-star ratings, as I had been very satisfied with my visit, the hotel room, the staff and their services. Imagine my surprise, therefore when I got the following email a day or so after submitting my review:

“Thank you for taking the time to complete our online survey regarding your recent stay at our hotel.

On behalf of our entire team, I would like to apologize for failing to exceed your expectations. Your satisfaction is important to us and we will be using the feedback you provided to make improvements to ensure we offer an exceptional experience for our guests in the future.

I hope that you will consider staying with us again so that we can have another chance to provide you with a superior experience.”

Shocking mail, isn’t it? To think that a Hotel would apologise for not exceeding my expectations!

I believe that is exactly why they get a 4.5-star rating on TripAdvisor. For them, customer satisfaction is not enough; they want their guests to be enchanted, enthralled, and excited, so a return visit is a “no-brainer”; no other hotel choice would make sense!

So I have a question for you: How do you treat your own customers? Do you do just enough to satisfy them, or do you consistently look to exceed their expectations?

If you are a regular reader here – and I’d love to know why if you’re not, so I can do better in the future – you will know that I often talk about “surprising” and “delighting” our customers. These are not hollow words; there’s a very real reason why I use them. The reason is that our customers may be satisfied, but they will never stay satisfied for long.

The above example is one way that the hotel staff ensures they have enough time to correct whatever is not a “superior experience,” as they term their own desired service level, and to continue to offer total customer satisfaction.

 

Examples of Brands Going Beyond Customer Satisfaction

Here are a few examples of other companies that go above and beyond in terms of their own customer service. I hope they inspire you to do the same and to aspire to exceed customer satisfaction whenever and wherever you can.

Coming back to the title of this post, I hope you now agree that satisfaction is no longer sufficient to attract and keep your customers.

It’s time to step up your game to aim Click to continue reading

Top 10 Challenges Facing Companies When They Adopt a Customer-First Strategy

In an era where customer expectations are rapidly evolving, businesses have finally recognised the importance of adopting a customer-first strategy.

However, despite this awareness, many companies still struggle to fully embrace customer-centric practices. Numerous barriers can hinder the journey toward customer-centricity, impacting both customer satisfaction and long-term business success. In this article, I propose ten reasons that often prevent companies from becoming more customer-centric and offer suggestions on how organisations can overcome these challenges.

 

Introduction

We all know that customers exert unprecedented influence today and that business success hinges on one core principle: customer-centricity. The shift from product-centric models to customer-focused strategies has become not just a preference but a clear necessity for every company aiming to thrive in today’s dynamic market landscape. Yet, despite acknowledging its significance, many organisations still struggle to genuinely embrace customer centricity.

The journey towards adopting a customer-first strategy is not merely about altering a few processes; it’s a transformative endeavour that necessitates rethinking organisational culture, strategies, and operations. These are all covered in detail in my book Winning Customer Centricity: Putting Customers at the Heart of Your Business – One Day at a Time. (Click the link to learn more and get a free download.)

For now, I want to share some ideas on how these challenges manifest, why they persist, and, most importantly, how visionary leaders can lead their organisations to conquer these roadblocks and establish a new paradigm that places customers at the forefront of everything they do.

 

The 10 Challenges of a Customer-First Strategy

As the market continues to evolve and customer expectations soar to new heights, the need for customer-centricity becomes a strategic imperative and a distinguishing factor that separates industry leaders from followers. Here are ten keys to unlocking the full potential of a customer-first strategy.

1. Lack of Customer-Centric Leadership: Without solid support from upper management or executives, initiatives to become more customer-centric might not receive the necessary resources, attention, or priority to succeed.

When executives don’t prioritise customer satisfaction or fail to embody customer-centric values, they send a clear message throughout the organisation that customer-centricity isn’t a core focus for the business. Leadership buy-in is essential for creating a culture that places the customer at the heart of decision-making.

Actions: Host workshops or training sessions for leaders to emphasise the strategic importance of customer-centricity. Share success stories highlighting the positive impact of customer-centric practices on business outcomes. Encourage leaders to actively participate in customer feedback sessions to demonstrate their commitment.

2. Silos and Departmentalism: Departmental silos can be formidable barriers to customer-centricity in larger organisations.

In most companies, departments operate autonomously, focusing on their own goals and metrics without considering the broader customer experience. These siloed departments lead to disconnected efforts and inefficiencies, as well as confusing customer experiences and a fragmented customer journey.

To tackle this, companies should encourage interdepartmental communication, establish cross-functional teams, and align goals to ensure a seamless and consistent customer experience.

Actions: Establish cross-functional teams or task forces with representatives … Click to continue reading

Maximising Customer Value: Answering Your Top Questions About Customer Centricity

As a customer-first strategist, I am frequently asked about customer centricity and the value it brings to a business when they adopt the strategy.

I, therefore, thought it would be useful to share the topics my clients ask me about most frequently and my responses to them. If you, too, have questions about customer centricity, I’m sure you will find the answers you’re looking for below. And if not, you can always DM me.

 

So you have questions about customer centricity?

Good to know! Let me start by saying that adopting a customer-first strategy can be daunting for any organization. You should, therefore, not dwell upon your reticence in the past. However, in today’s rapidly changing business landscape, it is more important than ever for you to prioritize customer centricity.

 

What is a customer-first strategy?

A customer-first strategy is an approach to business that prioritizes the needs and preferences of the customer. It means putting the customer at the centre of every decision an organisation makes, from product development to marketing and sales. Put simply, it involves a shift away from traditional product-focused strategies to a more customer-centric approach.

This means that it’s not just about providing good customer service; it’s about understanding your customers’ needs, preferences, and pain points, and then designing your products, services, and marketing strategies to meet those needs.

 

Why is a customer-first strategy important?

In today’s highly competitive marketplace, focusing on your customers is more important than ever before. You can no longer hesitate. Nor can you not make it a top objective for your organisation.

A customer-first strategy can help you build stronger customer relationships, increase customer loyalty and retention, and ultimately drive revenue growth.

By focusing on your customers’ needs and preferences, you can differentiate your brand from your competitors and create a sustainable competitive advantage. Isn’t that what we’re all searching to do?

A customer-first strategy is important because it can increase customer loyalty and satisfaction. When customers feel that a business truly understands their needs and is committed to meeting them, they are more likely to remain loyal to that business and recommend it to others.

In addition, a customer-first strategy can help businesses identify new opportunities for growth and innovation. By focusing on the customer, businesses can gain a deeper understanding of their market, and create products and services that truly meet the needs of their customers.

 

How do you implement a customer-first strategy?

To implement a customer-first strategy, you must start by understanding your customers. For me, this starts with simply watching and listening to them. I say “simply”, but this is one of the most powerful ways to not only know, but truly understand your customers and how your product or service fits into their lives.

Once you have done this, you can supplement your knowledge, if you have found gaps in it, by conducting market research surveys, collecting customer feedback, and analyzing customer data.

All the information you gather can be used to … Click to continue reading

How Leaders can Successfully Lead a Customer-first Strategy Adoption

As a leader, you know that customer centricity is critical to the success of your business. However, it is not enough to pay lip service to this concept; you must make it an integral part of your company’s culture and business strategy.

In this post, we will explore what customer centricity means, why it is essential, and how you, as a leader, can successfully lead a customer-first strategy adoption in your organization.

 

Defining Customer Centricity

Customer centricity is a business strategy that puts the customer at the heart of everything the company does. It involves understanding the needs and desires of your customers and then tailoring your products and services to meet them.

Customer centricity is not just about providing excellent customer service; it’s about creating a culture of customer obsession that permeates every aspect of the business. This is why it must be a company objective.

 

Why is a Customer-first Strategy Important?

There are several reasons why a customer-first strategy is crucial for the success of your business. First and foremost, it helps you build a loyal customer base.

When customers feel that a company truly understands their needs and is committed to meeting them, they are more likely to become repeat customers and recommend the company to others. This can help you increase revenue and grow your business.

Customer centricity can also help you differentiate yourself from your competitors. In today’s highly competitive business environment, standing out from the crowd can be challenging.

However, suppose you can demonstrate that you are genuinely committed to meeting your customers’ needs. That’s a great way to distinguish yourself from other companies that are just going through the motions.

Finally, customer centricity can help you stay ahead of the curve regarding new product and service development. By constantly seeking customer feedback, you can identify emerging trends and stay ahead of the competition. This can help you develop new offers that meet your customer’s needs today and tomorrow.

 

Leading a Customer-first Strategy in Your Organization

Implementing a customer-first strategy in your organization requires a significant shift in mindset and culture. Here are the steps you can take to make customer-centricity a reality in your business:

 

1. Start with the CEO

As a business leader, you need to lead by example.

Make it clear to your employees that customer centricity is a top priority for the company.

Set measurable goals and hold your team accountable for achieving them.

This sends a strong message to everyone in the organization that customer-centricity is not just a buzzword but a fundamental part of the business strategy.

 

2. Understand Your Customers

To be truly customer-centric, you need to understand your customers deeply.

This means going beyond demographic data and understanding their motivations, pain points, and desires.

Watch and listen to your customers frequently. Conduct customer research, including surveys and focus groups, to gain insights into what your customers want and need.

Collect the information in a customer persona/avatar template. If you don’t have

Click to continue reading

Post Covid People are Searching for More Meaningful Connection & Engagement

I know, you probably don’t want to read yet another article about the post-pandemic era. But bear with me; this is about customer connection and engagement.

Since covid, people have changed their perspective on many categories. They have also adapted their purchasing behaviour following lockdown. So this seems to be the perfect time to reconsider our customer-first strategies, doesn’t it?

Up until the covid-19 virus infected the globe, almost every single organisation, big or small, recognised the importance of satisfying their customers. However, most of them were only giving lip service to customer-centricity. Very few were actually going beyond voicing their opinions.

So I have some bad news if you are in this first group and it’s this. Not actioning a customer-first approach in everything you do is no longer an option. You were be called out, most probably very publically online. Customers are sharing their experiences of companies and brands far more than they were doing before the pandemic.

It makes sense. What else did we have to do than surf the internet all day long? And this habit seems to have remained. According to the latest global statistics, back in 2020, the average consumer spent 474 minutes a day on digital media. By 2023, that number is predicted to rise, according to the experts, to 500 minutes on digital media.

Taking a closer look at social media use trends, business owners and marketers can learn a great deal about opportunities to boost engagement and business impact as the new norm continues to evolve.

The article by Business.com lists four things consumers are looking for:

  1. They want to be entertained – understandable when you consider how much time they are spending online.
  2. Unlocking creativity – they are not only consuming content, but they are also creating it in larger quantities than ever before.
  3. They want connection and comfort – people are desperate to overcome their isolation and connect with others, so online multiplayer gaming and chat have surged.
  4. They seek positive content to cheer them up – it’s a natural human response to seek uplifting, inspirational content during difficult times.

If I were to sum up these four desires, I would say that people are looking for more connection and engagement. Exactly what a customer-first strategy provides! But there are things to avoid.

[bctt tweet=”Customers have four desires when online, that can be summarised as simply a desire for more connection and engagement. Exactly what a customer-first strategy provides! #CEX #CustomerFirst #CustomerCentricity #CMO” username=”Denysech”]

When an organisation decides to become more customer centric, there are many mistakes that are commonly made. This article “7 Reasons for Failure When Adopting a Customer First Strategy” gives the main ones and makes a complementary read to this post.

But today’s world has accelerated the upward trend of the importance of a customer-first strategy and makes it one of the most, if not the most important one for all organisations.

It is no longer the norm, or even the new norm, of successful … Click to continue reading

7 Reasons Why Your Customer First Strategy Adoption Will Fail!

Every CEO knows that a stronger customer focus can be the answer to many – dare I say most? – of their business challenges!

So why do so many companies continue to struggle in successfully adopting a customer-first strategy and culture?

Here are the seven main reasons why companies fail to effectively adopt a customer first strategy; which one are you struggling with the most today?

1. The CEO has stated it as a company objective but has not detailed what nor how the organisation will change

While it is essential that a customer-first strategy has a board-level sponsor, it is important that every employee understands their role in making it happen. It should not be treated as just another project for one department to complete, but as a long-term, top 3 company objective.

When this happens, every division is driven to identify how their actions will impact their customers and what part they will play in meeting this important company objective.

This is one area where the CEO can’t set it and forget it. He/she needs to be regularly informed of progress and should ask some “awkward” questions to ensure that everyone is truly embracing the objective. Without this company-wide support, the strategy will never succeed.

[bctt tweet=”The CEO needs to ask the awkward questions that ensure everyone is embracing a customer-first strategy. #CEX #CRM #CustomerFirst #CustomerCentricity #Customer” username=”Denysech”]

A few years ago, the Business Roundtable, which is an association of over 180 CEOs leading US companies, agreed to put people before profits. They specifically said they would be:

  1. Delivering value to our customers.
  2. Investing in our employees.
  3. Dealing fairly and ethically with our suppliers.
  4. Supporting the communities in which we work.

With many organisations now struggling to recover from the impact of covid-19, it is interesting to see whether they have all moved forward on these objectives.

The Business Roundtable updated their results one year later. In the summary you can read HERE they say:

One year later – through a period of unprecedented crises – companies have demonstrated a commitment to the values embedded in the Statement.

These numbers should be sufficient to convince every CEO that a customer-first strategy is worth investing in. In fact, it is an essential strategy every CEO would be wise to adopt, no matter what industry they are in. So what are you or your CEO waiting for? Did I miss a different problem you are currently facing? What other challenges have you faced or are now facing in adopting a customer-first strategy? Please let me know by adding your comments below.


If you would like to know what support we can provide in helping you to adopt a customer first strategy, check out our website then contact us here: https://c3centricity.com/contact

 … Click to continue reading

Essentials of a Customer First Strategy Every Industry Needs to Adopt

Every business should strive to improve their customers’ experience with their products and services. Adopting a customer first strategy is therefore often mentioned as a company objective. Unfortunately, it rarely goes beyond the theory in most organisations, so I decided to help out with these six suggestions.

Hospitality is perhaps one of the most visible industries where customer satisfaction, or lack of, is quickly shared with the world.  (Read my last post for more on this)

It is true that without satisfaction, customers will not return to a hotel or restaurant. And they will almost certainly share their (bad) experiences with anyone who will listen – including online!

Hospitality is also one of the industries that receives the most comments online, thanks to TripAdvisor and other booking sites. There is no hiding from their clients!

Now while I empathise, this is not all bad news. Because it means that great service will also be more quickly known about online. Therefore you can make changes and see the results almost immediately, or at least far quicker than in most other businesses.

However, despite this, I believe that the hospitality industry has a lot it can learn from consumer packaged goods (CPG) where improvements take the consumer longer to appreciate. In fact most other industries could benefit from taking a look at some of CPG’s best-in-class processes.

Both the hospitality and CPG industries have their customers at their heart; after all it’s in their name. They are both founded on pleasing and hopefully delighting their clientele in the quality of the products and services they offer.

However, as the world changes, customer demands do too and companies need to stay current if not ahead of these requirements, in order to ensure continued growth.

 

The 6 essentials of a customer first strategy

#1. From ROI / ROR to ROE

There has been a lot of talk recently on moving from a return on investment to a return on relationship metric. While I agree with the importance of relationships, I believe that what we should be talking about is engagement. Be honest, other than the author of the once popular book that started talking about brand love, who wants to have a relationship with a brand?!

Brands that have a high following and loyalty have found a way to consistently engage their fans and keep them coming back. They become involved and interested in the brand, the product, their website, even their communications.

Coca Cola and Red Bull are great examples of this. You should also check out another post entitles “Increasing Impact & Engagement through Advertising Testing.”

 

#2. Building Relationships with Strangers

While the hospitality industry is based on serving and satisfying its guests, in today’s connected world, it also needs to consider people who are currently strangers – but who could potentially become clients.

These might be the friends of current guests, who for example the Rosewood Mayakoba resort in Mexico tries to attract. Let me explain.

This wonderful … Click to continue reading

Adopting a Customer First Strategy. Even the Police Can Get it Right!

In most countries, the population have a love / hate relationship with their police. You can imagine my surprise, therefore, to find myself writing about how they appear to be adopting a customer first strategy in Switzerland!

Let me explain. A few years ago they introduced a new-style speed radars in the villages around my home town. The elements are not that new per se, I know, but last week it suddenly hit me why these speed cameras seem to be so effective. It’s simple; they’re customer centric! The Swiss police have adopted a customer first strategy! And that’s why I want to share more about this story here.

 

Background

One of the reasons why the Police are disliked in many (dare I say most?) countries, is because of their insidious speed controls.

Whether they are permanent fixtures as on the right, or temporary ones, we all dislike the flash that tells us it’s too late, that we’ve been “caught.”

We then wait a few days, to weeks or even months, naively hoping that it wasn’t our car that was flashed. But eventually the letter arrives asking us to pay a fine.

I think the worst of them all are the laser guns that the Police have been using for many years now. We don’t even know we’ve been flashed until the communication arrives at our home! Or we are pulled up a few hundred meters down the road.

 

The relatively new types of radar that are being introduced in my home area don’t flash either. But that’s because we never get “caught” as such.

You see they measure our speed and give us immediate feedback. Take a look at the photo on the right; I’m sure you’ve seen such installations before in your own area.

Now if we make the assumption that all four types of equipment are to get road users to decrease their speed in critical areas – and not just to gather money as I’ve heard suggested – then the results must vary widely.

 

 

So let me share my thoughts from the perspective of a customer first strategy champion.

 

What This Has to Do with Your business

So why is this example relevant for you and your own customer first strategy? Well, ask yourself what you really want for your business? 

In the case of the police, I am assuming that they want to reduce the speed of drivers in certain areas and make the roads safer for everyone. In this case, the customer-centric approach, which has by far the most success at slowing drivers down to within the speed limit along a larger portion of the road, is the information panel. If that is their objective, then the Police in every country should adopt these new style radars.

But if those who consider speed checks to be a mere money-making operation are right, then the Police will continue to use one of their other options. And they must accept the … Click to continue reading

Are You Giving What Customers Want Today?

As a dedicated customer centricity champion, just like you, I spend a lot of my time researching what customers want, just like you do too, I hope. In this period of great global unrest, understanding our customers has become more important than ever before.

Just a few short months ago, I didn’t think that it would be possible for customer-centricity to become any more important. But things change and now everyone is fighting to keep their businesses afloat. So the new and constantly altering needs and desires of our customers should be a top priority for all of us to follow.

To help me keep abreast of the changes, I’m regularly checking online searches for such terms as customer service, customer satisfaction and customer care. Google and Bing have become some of my best friends!

A couple of years ago, I came across some surprising facts, which prompted this post when I first drafted it. But with the incredibly unforeseen events of the past few years, I feel it deserves a update.

Already at the time, my analysis suggested a serious problem in the business of looking after our customers. Today it is clear that any organisation that hasn’t spent time putting things right, will most certainly be suffering in this post-pandemic, global unrest in which companies are trying to do business. I’d be interested to hear your own thoughts once you have read the article.

 

Customer Centricity

Wikipedia, another of my faithful friends, doesn’t have a definition for customer centricity! If you look up the term, you get directed to customer satisfaction! Unbelievable.  Try it for yourself and see!

Gartner defines customer centricity as:

“The ability of people in an organisation to understand customers’ situations, perceptions, and expectations.”

It then goes on to say:

“Customer centricity demands that the customer is the focal point of all decisions related to delivering products, services and experiences to create customer satisfaction, loyalty and advocacy.”

What I particularly like about this definition, is that it refers to customer understanding and the need for customers to be the focus of decision-making. It also highlights the need to create not just customer satisfaction, but loyalty and advocacy too.

Now whereas it seems to be difficult to build longterm loyalty these days, especially in B2C businesses, advocacy is essential in today’s connected world. Of course the latter means that customers are surprised and delighted rather than just satisfied, so that they are excited to share their positive experiences with others.


Need help in adopting a customer-first strategy?

Check out our Brand Accelerator™ Course in the C3Centricity Academy


Aim for Advocacy Rather than Loyalty

As we all know, it costs between 5 and 25 times more to acquire a new customer as it does to retain existing ones. (Invesp) Therefore strong loyalty is a valuable benefit for a brand. But covid saw us all changing our purchasing behaviours, as we researched, compared and then bought more online. So although loyalty is difficult, it … Click to continue reading

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