Did you lose customers to your staff/ competition?
Did you know you are 405 times more likely to be struck by lightning than not lose customers to your staff/ competition when you aren’t performing as expected.
This is the experience era. People don’t just buy goods and services anymore they also buy experience. For every bad experience your clients get you lose them and potential customers they could refer to you due to the fast spread of word of mouth. And technology has made it so easy for customers to switch loyalty just by a click on their devices.
When you lodge at a resort that gives you the Wow experience you tell your family and friends about your wonderful experience. Likewise if you have a bad experience you will tell everyone that cares to listen. Bear in mind that as humans we like to exaggerate and bad news travels faster. The people that listened to your tales will form their opinion of the place from your experience. Thus affecting the patronage of the resort.
In the scheme of things a customer knows, likes then trusts a company to do business with it. If the company keeps exceeding expectations it progresses into buy, repeat and best of all refer.
But when a company becomes cocky there’s a decline into distrust, you lose customers and eventually failure/ closure of the business.
As much as you strive to render top-of-the-range products/ services ensure your customer care and delivery people don’t cause you to lose customers.
How Not To Lose customers to your former staff/ competition.
Take care to avoid the following so you do not lose your hard earned clients:
As a business owner or entrepreneur you should eat, drink, breathe and sleep your business. You should be your Chief marketer and Ambassador not your staff.
There’s a make-up artist who works in the entertainment industry. She’s always sending her PA to represent her everywhere. Hardly meets with her clients. Her PA was practically the face of her business.
She had a major client who needed to do a project abroad. The client side-lined her and sent her PA abroad for the job on a retainer. That’s how she lost a big opportunity. Thence the PA now has her own booming business.
The client said they don’t know or trust her hence them snatching her PA.
You should not over promise and under-perform. Don’t sell what you can’t deliver. Clients will lose their trust in you. Do realize your customers can find the same quality for a lower price elsewhere.
A good example is don’t prolong things unnecessarily. An online store decided to make their Black Friday deals last one month. I had forgotten and made an order 3 weeks into their Black Friday. I waited patiently to no avail. After a week I called customer care to find out what the problem was. And was told the delay was due to the Black Friday rush.
Their normal mode of operation is you make an order and someone calls to confirm your order. But due to the rush no one from customer care called to confirm my order. And things got mixed up. As I write this post on Jan 22nd, 2018 I’m still waiting for my refund from 20th Dec.
They say they are the online store to trust but I had to tell them I no longer trust them. The customer care person that attended to me said they were short-staffed. In this case contract staff should have been employed to cater to confirmation and delivery.
When your employees are dissatisfied that’s the first thing a customer notices about your business. Thus the saying the happiness of your clients depends on the happiness of your staff.
I did have a boss who always promised to pay commissions, he never did. Neither did he create a comfortable work environment. Overtime three of the Sales reps left and individually set up the same business. Also took along with them a sizable chunk of his customers. He had to make trips to visit the customers to see if he could redeem some and his image. Unfortunately he only won back few.
Poor Customer Service
If possible record the conversations that your customer care personnel have with your clients. And for walk in clients ensure you have a supervisor that keeps your customer service in check. Consistency, reliability, and responsiveness is key to retaining your clients.
Overworked and Understaffed
Remember the online store I mentioned above? The delivery men were outright rude and under-performing. It was while discussing with one he said he had to deliver items to 70 places that same day. Clearly he’s overworking and it’s taking its toll on him.
Lack of product knowledge
A typical example of this is where I buy my fish feed from. I dialed the number on the receipt to ask if a brand of feed was available, in what size and amount. The guy that picked couldn’t answer my questions. He spoke like he didn’t even work there yet he did. Due to his ignorance I went elsewhere to make my purchase.
Refusal to reward customer loyalty
Nothing gladdens the heart of your customer more than knowing they are appreciated. Reward your customers either old or new. Think of creative ways to recompense them. It could be as little as calling on their birthdays or anniversaries. Also you can give awards to them.
Study shows that it is 5 to 25 times more expensive to acquire new customers than to retain new ones. So you may want to think twice before you lose your existing clients. Avoid having a lackadaisical attitude to your business, reward customer loyalty, know your products and services, don’t overreach, improve your customer service, don’t overwork your staff and ensure your staff feel like they are part of the family.