It seems like every time we turn around, there is another story hitting social media about a poor customer service experience. Companies scramble to mitigate the damage but damaging stories — especially if they go viral — can leave a lasting impact.
In fact, 95 percent of people who have a poor customer experience share it with others, while only 46 percent of those with positive experiences share. If those stats aren’t alarming enough, we also know that companies that invest in service earn twice as much as their competitors.
Organizations across the globe are taking notice of these numbers and have decided to pay closer attention to how having loyal customers pays dividends. Investing time and money in a well-planned customer experience strategy is necessary if you want to become a major player.
Creating loyal customers is, in theory, simple, but executing these strategies can prove difficult.
Here are four ways to generate customer engagement and loyalty:
Your customers are busy and are not looking for something else to complicate their lives. Always look at how a customer interacts with you and make it easy for them to do business with you at each touch point.
2. Innovation (EASY innovation)
Technology is always evolving and so, it seems, are the various ways consumers can use it to engage with businesses. An important note: Don’t offer the latest and greatest technology just to offer it. Ensure the interaction is seamless and relevant to your customers.
3. Response and knowledge
When customers reach out, they want a quick response and to have their question answered. Seems simple, but if it were so simple, wouldn’t everyone be good at it?
Make sure you are always looking at things from the customer’s perspective. Successful companies ensure their customer service teams have the tools and knowledge they need to provide the correct answer or resolution quickly, regardless of the communication channel.
Also, dig down to determine WHY your customers do business with you. What problem are you solving for them? Knowing this will allow service teams to have the right solutions available at the right time.
4. Service recovery
You shouldn’t be giving customers reasons to contact you with complaints but, when they do, recover well!
While businesses never like to be the focus of an upset customer, it does happen. It is imperative that great service recovery, which begins with empowered employees, is taken seriously. Your “angry customers” can quickly turn into zealot advocates if you respond authentically, demonstrate their concerns are taken seriously, and show that their time and money are not taken for granted.
While planning and implementing a customer engagement and loyalty strategy does not need to be too complicated, it does need to be a priority and to be worked at consistently. Like any other relationship in our life, if you let issues fester for too long, the relationship will eventually fade or perish.