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5 simple ways to build a customer-centric culture
CloudCherry | Featured | February 13, 2017
In today’s world of cut-throat competition, the only factor that probably brings the competitive advantage to any business organization is Customer Experience. Building an organization wherein every single member of the staff sings the same song of customer-centricity is, therefore, vital to success in the long run.
Irrespective of the company size, delivering a flawless customer experience must be at the heart of every organisation. And the effort an organisation puts in improving the customer experience can pay rich dividends in form of new, more and repeat customers. The benefits (or returns, if you will) of being customer-centric are plenty. Customer Experience is rapidly becoming the need of the hour. You don’t have to take our word for it. We’ll let the statistics speak for themselves…
1. By the year 2020, Customer Experience will overtake price and product as the key differentiator. (Source: Biz Report)
2. By 2017, 50% of consumer product investments will be redirected to customer experience innovations. (Source: Gartner)
We are now in 2017 and in the battlefield already. So, unless you already have a fool-proof CX mechanism that allows you to listen to your customers and take action on their grievances in as little time as possible and close the loop, you may want to pull up your socks and consider investing in a Customer Experience Management tool to do it all (and more) for you. However, for maximum efficacy of the CX system, the CEM tool has to be implemented alongside building a customer-centric culture within the organization.
The two compliment each other when it comes to delivering the ultimate customer experience that will bring in return customers and make them brand evangelists. Here are some very simple steps that you can follow within your organization to build a culture of customer centricity!
As the leader, it is wise for you to assign very specific goals to each member in your organization so that they can focus on getting that one definite part of customer experience right. This way not only do you ensure that the load is shared by every single individual but also instill a sense of ownership. This inspires employees to assess their own growth and make changes to their approach accordingly. It brings growth at both an organizational level as well as at an individual level. The added advantage is that there is consistency in the customer experience you deliver across all customer touchpoints.
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Remember there is no dearth of competition in today’s world (with the very evident exceptions of Apple, Amazon and the companies of this ilk). Irrespective of which industry you belong to, your customers are always your competitors’ prospects! So, treat them well and value the business that they bring to you each time they walk in through your doors. Show them with little and large gestures that you are delighted because they are!
The thumb rule to nurture a customer-powered organization culture is to act instantaneously on any negative feedback that you get. We suggest that if you offer an in-store experience, make sure to mend things before the disgruntled customer leaves your store. If it is an issue that cannot be resolved in such a short span (if it involves strategic changes, for example) then follow up with the customer regularly and inform them that their feedback is being looked into and that it will soon be fixed. And once fixed, invite them (offer a bait, if need be) to come back and see it for themselves. Treat every concern as priority and the sooner the action is taken the higher the chances of retention.
Engaged employees will bring in engaged customers. A person who is appreciated will always do more than what is expected. Always treat your employees the way you want your customers to be treated because your employees are in fact your ‘first customers’. Employee engagement goes a long way in improving profitability and customer retention. One important thing to remember, though, is that frontline staff are not the only ones who dictate the state of customer experience of your organization. Every employee who works with your brand contributes, in one way or another, to building the brand experience. And if customer-centricity is your brand promise then empowering all employees, regardless of their roles and contributions, is vital.
Heroism is when someone really goes above and beyond the call of duty and does something outstanding for either themselves or somebody else. This doing something extra is a pre-requisite to stand out from the crowd. Going Above and Beyond your customer’s expectations will not only get their attention but also their loyalty. The age of customer satisfaction is behind us. We are now in the age of Customer Delight and delight doesn’t happen just by giving your customers what they come in looking for. It happens when you leave them spell bound with an experience so fantastic that they can’t help but come back to you! So, don’t just strive for satisfaction.
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