If you’re digging for new customers, where’s the best place to strike it rich?
That’s a trick question, of course, and the answer is simple – in your existing customer base.
Here’s another question, and this one isn’t a trick: Do you actually know your customers? Do you know how they feel, what they want, what they like and don’t like about your business? Do you know how you could make them happy?
If you know the answers to these questions, you can turn indifferent or hostile customers into happy customers, and happy customers into friends who will actually recruit new customers for you.
The key is to have the chain of responsibility built directly into the process. This can start with automatic detection of keywords in a customer satisfaction questionnaire – positive, negative, or just “of interest” – which in turn triggers an alert telling the responsible manager that the customer needs attention.
In the ALR system, for example, a negative keyword could trigger an alert, automatically notifying the store manager that a customer is dissatisfied. The system actually monitors the manager’s response, alerting upper management if the problem isn’t handled in a timely manner, and the entire process is automatically logged. This is the cornerstone of an effective customer retention management system: built-in notification, built-in accountability, and a clear record of all actions taken.
Responsibility and accountabiity:
When responsibility and accountability are built into the process, it’s easy to meet the challenge of how to retain a customer – and to build up your base of satisfied, engaged customers, who will actually do the work of recruiting new customers for you. Managers from the store level on up develop the habit of taking responsibility for customer satisfaction. If they know that it is their responsibility, if they know that there’s a system in place for automatically handling and tracking customer satisfaction, and if they know that the results of their actions will be to increase sales and make their store more valuable to the system, they automatically become an active part of the positive-feedback cycle of customer growth.
And the driving force behind this is an automated close-the-loop system of notification, response, and accountability such as ASK-LISTEN-RETAIN, which takes care of the day-to-day work of managing responsibility for customer satisfaction, leaving you free to tackle the more pressing responsibilities of managing and expanding your business. Adding such a system to your business is the best way to strike it rich in your customer base.
If you would like to know more about how the ASK LISTEN RETAIN System or how it can help create customer retention and loyalty, please contact us.