Every company’s top priority should be the customer. After all, the reason why you’re in business is to meet the needs and wants of the people, and to provide a service or product that ensures they come back. After all, without them you won’t have a company.
It’s quite simple. A business will be more successful and will reach its set goals faster when all its operations and administrative efforts are focused on its most important assets; the available customer base or clientele. Customers who make daily use of your products do so in hopes that the experience will be effortless. The thin line between a one-time purchase and a customer who stays loyal to you and your company could be as simple as effective listening, constructive response and where it applies, and speedy and sustainable implementation.
This post is the second in a series of blog posts which address the topic of customer centeredness and focus. Together, we will take an expository insight into the business which revolves around its customers and talk about the need for any business, including yours, to effectively link every business and operational action to its customers.
So, let’s look at customer centeredness. Basically, customer centeredness is conducting your business with the goal of attaining a level of customer satisfaction or a measure of how a company’s products and services provided meet or go beyond the expectations of its customers.
By now, you should already know why your business should be revolving around your customers. However, I’ll quickly share with you why your business needs to be customer centric and why customer centeredness should be a major priority when considering and implementing a business strategy.
Every customer will naturally feel more loyal and committed to a company they feel a certain emotional and sentimental connection to. When customers feel that a company is only out to make some quick and steady cash, doesn’t care about them or their feelings, or what it is that they want, they won’t be able to effectively relate to them and eventually they cut ties with such companies. Because of this, it’s more than important to be emphatic and sympathetic to the plights and feelings of your customers and to provide services and products that are aimed at directly and permanently providing for the immediate needs of your customer base.
Originality is the key in this area. You need to show a service that is aligned to the needs of every customer and, although it’s a known fact that you can’t please everybody, you should be focusing on pleasing as many people as you possibly can. These aligned services are sure to attract, and more importantly, keep the customers that your business needs to maintain success. An ability to anticipate the needs of your customers will also be helpful in this regard. You should be able to foresee the needs that your customers will have. Study the trends in your specific area, research and be aware of social media trends, and ask your customers how you are doing. That way, when the needs eventually do arise, your customers won’t be running somewhere else to have them met.
Product development and comparison shopping have undergone a huge process of metamorphosis since the advent and widespread use of the internet. Now, it is much easier for customers to make purchases and find the best deals online in different marketplaces and platforms. In a world where every business is a competitor, it has become increasingly important for businesses to find areas of their operation that set them apart from the rest of the pack. Businesses which are customer centric excel exceedingly in this aspect because, as stated earlier, customers will be more loyal to businesses which they feel a personal connection to.
Remember, your products and services are being provided to meet the needs of your customers. That being said, who better to know where you’re going wrong then the customers whose needs you are trying to meet? It doesn’t take much to create a detractor. In fact, one wrong customer interaction can spread like wild fire. However, the promoters of your business can have the same effect positively. Many of your loyal customers have a genuine concern for your business and will tell others if you continue to meet their needs. Communication is key. They could have ideas and tips on how you could improve in service delivery, what products you should carry, what products you should avoid, and in the long run, increase your clientele size and business profitability. However, if they don’t have an avenue to communicate with you, or if they don’t feel that connection to you, you might never have access to those ideas.
Making services which are finely tailored to fit your customers creates an avenue for you to build relationships. If any of them have any ideas, and they usually do, they’ll be free to come to you and share their opinions. Apart from ideas, customers who feel heard and valued become those promoters we often talk about. They are a crucial part of successfully marketing your business. A customer who comes in for the first time and who has an awesome overall customer experience will be back and talk about their experience to others. Word of mouth is even more wide spread now through social media. The feedback your business may receive is almost instantaneous.
So, take time to look at what you offer, what is working and not working, and make it a point to talk to your customers and align your products with their needs. Be customer centric!