All business owners want to hear that their customers are pleased, loyal, and saying great things about their experiences with your brand. If all businesses strive for this, why do businesses get so many complaints, and lose customers? Because it’s not enough to simply acquire customers. You must keep them.
First, let me clarify this – customer acquisition is not customer success. Customer success is a practice that makes any business, in any industry, grow. Is it enough to have a perfect product, you may ask? The answer is no.
The purpose of this list is to give small and medium business owners a guideline for meetings and taking the proper steps towards success – both for you and your customers.
- As you focus on leads management and understanding your buyer persona profile, you should also concentrate on the people that are already your customers.
The first question you should ask: Do you have enough data to understand your customer? Specifically, what are their current goals when using your product, and what are their perceptions about how helpful your product is on their journey?
Jason Whitehead, CEO at Tri Tuns said: “Until you know what it takes to achieve success from your customers’ perspective, you will just waste valuable time doing things that will have little long-term impact.”
Stop wasting time. Understand what your customer’s goal is. And yes – it might take a while because every business has different kinds of customers with different kinds of goals. No two businesses are the same. And neither are their customers.
This is a great video of what customer experience is all about…
Each one matters.
- How do you achieve continuous growth? Make a clear distinction between your lead generation data, and data about existing customers.
Your sales team might be acutely aware of the lead they are after. However, it is only after you acquire the customer that the most valuable part of the journey begins. Don’t just have sales audits – have customer success reviews.
- Redefine the skills each employee must master. Some must-have customer success skills are:
- Clear communication skills, and patience. More importantly, the ability to end a conversation with the customer and leave them with no doubts.
- Attentiveness. A good trick to check your team’s attentiveness is to ask: what was your last customer not happy about? What did you do about it? What was the outcome?
- Knowledge of the product. Do all your employees use your product? Do they know each function? Is a training manual available?
A great way to test these skills is using mystery shopper services.
Develop these skills company-wide. Don’t limit these strengths to only the customer service and sales department. Align your team’s goals, motivation, and vision of the company.
Most business owners are shocked when they realize that each of their employees has a very different view and interpretation about your brand’s position, and even your value proposition.
It is your job to make sure all your employees are on the same page. Do not leave your employees to guess. Have you invested time and resources to align your team strategically? Strategically aligned teams create value for organizations by achieving better results, in less time, with a smaller budget.
- Make your employees’ attentiveness work to boost success.
Every business in the world gets feedback. Feedback is your business’s gold mine.
There are 2 types of team members: attentive and non-observant. You could have a team made up of any combination thereof. Either way, you may still be doing zero about all the information that you are receiving every day.
When was the last time your client’s feedback translated into action within your company?
- Make customer success your daily business purpose, not just a marketing metric.
Your team, consultants, and clients should always be aware that customer success is more important than acquisition, usage, and other metrics.
How do you claim this kind of purpose? This quote says it best:
“Your customer doesn’t care how much you know until they know how much you care.” -Damon Richards
Demonstrate that you care by communicating and interacting. More importantly, don’t approach customers in a defensive mode.
- Understand that building a robust customer success program requires dedication and training.
These days, you don’t need a reactive customer service support; your business needs a customer success team. This team can identify an unhappy customer before you get an angry call. This also kick starts all your recurring revenue and referrals to start pouring in.
- Understand changing customer behaviour and innovation.
Not only are expectations shifting today, but post product customer behaviour has changed. Accept the change. Be the change. Help your clients embrace it. Today’s biggest consumer group are between the ages of 20 and 40. What are their expectations regarding customer success, and their journey with your brand? Pick convenience over history. Do not let yourself or your team rest when the world is moving forward every second. Move with it, develop yourself, and enjoy the process.
Do you want to grow your business? That means being upfront. It is not pure luck or fortune-telling magic. It is simply developing an ability to notice the change and deploy it – for your good, for your team’s convenience, for your customer success.