It seems having a great customer service experience these days is as rare as locating a public pay phone! As a consumer myself, I often feel businesses are only after my money, not my satisfaction or my loyalty. In my opinion many employees project the attitude that they are counting down the hours until payday, I don’t sense their focus on my satisfaction. The result is that I actually spend less money. This is good for my bottom line, but not that of the small, medium, and large businesses in my town, my state, and my country. A strong customer service focus is a basic marketing strategy in need of a resurgence. In order for customer service to be a priority for your business, every employee must be a salesperson.
Each individual a customer comes in contact with at your business impacts whether that customer will do repeat business and recommend your business to others. If a customer receives high quality customer service at every point of contact with your business:
· The customer will most likely do business with you again.
· The customer will also be much more likely to recommend your business to others.
On the other hand, if there is some point during the customer’s transaction with your company that he receives inadequate customer service:
· The likelihood he will do business with your company goes down.
· The unsatisfied customer is more likely to negatively review your company.
How do you insure your customers’ satisfaction? One strategy to optimize customer satisfaction is making every employee a “salesperson”. A few suggestions to begin transforming each staff member into an individual who “sells” for you include:
· Consistent and ongoing employee training on your business practices and your mission. You want your staff to understand how your business benefits the customer.
· Train employees on how their individual roles in the company are an integral part of the customers’ overall experience.
· Train staff to ask open ended questions to find out customers’ needs. Not only what the customer needs in terms of the product. For example train your accounts receivable staff to ask open ended questions, such as “What on the invoice leads you to believe you were charged too much for item X?”
These suggestions are just the tip of the iceberg if you want to make customer service a priority. Investing in a quality human based customer service program may seem daunting, but compared to the cost of other marketing strategies it is a sound use of your resources. You may not be able to bring back the pay phone, but you can make quality customer service the everyday mantra for your business.