An open and honest orientation towards customer problems is the key that opens the door to marketing success. In business, there are only two ways to create and sustain a superior performance on the long run: an exceptional customer care and constant innovation. A company that adopts the marketing concept philosophy sees the client as the principal driving force behind his work, believing that business can only survive if it can satisfy his needs.
In a competitive market economy, buyers can choose what, when and where to buy, or whether to buy a product or not. Thus, to succeed in attracting consumers, the logical starting point for the company is to identify what customers want and then try to meet these requirements in a more effective way than your competitors. In the long term, a company must satisfy customers and make money from it.
As the company offers better synchronization with the demands, preferences and desires of its consumers, they will be willing to pay more, and thus generate profits for the business. As a result, marketing as a business philosophy can be defined as the ability to create and retain profitable customers.
Creating clients for a company involves monitoring business to react to shifts in potential consumers’ needs, so that they become loyal customers.
Customer retention refers to the ability of the company to minimize or avoid threats to its customer caused by changes in their needs or because of changes that occur among competitors.
Customer orientation is found in cases where companies are concerned to know what their customers’ needs are. In many cases, companies are concerned about production and related technological processes, failing to perceive that customer needs have changed and that their products do not meet those needs. In these situations, it is created an opportunity for its competitors to enter the market and provide products and services that better meet those needs. Thus, the companies in question will face increasing difficulties in selling their products.
Without a results-oriented marketing strategy, one which involves a strong customer support, a company would gain new customers and perhaps lose the ones that they have previously gained after a very short time. According to one old style marketer’s quotes, if you manage to win a customer when he is young, you’ve won his life. Here’s a comforting thought, but not an entirely true one. Preferences are perishable, especially in our days. If you fail to come up with new ways to recreate or restore people’s preference for a product, customers will disappear and you will soon disappear too.
Indeed, you need to win the customer’s trust while they are still young, but you also have to come up with new reasons for people to buy your product. Customer support plays a very important role in this, as clients need to be assured that someone will come to their help in case something goes wrong. Thus, the customer care department might even more important than advertising when it comes to a company’s long-term survival strategy. Companies like WalkMe try to combat this area. With the help of self service and online guidance, customers can be in control, while feeling like they had a great service. Self-tasking gives customers empowerment. If there are small issues, the self-service tool can help, and for bigger issues they can happily contact support. Waiting times will be shorter due to less customers calling for small issues that still cost the call center money.
Coca-Cola understood this message very clearly when it began losing customers in the early 70’s. It was assumed that since Coca-Cola was loved by the public, would be automatically consumed. But guess what happened? Coca-Cola was loved, but not consumed. The same thing is happening to many other companies which consider themselves a landmark in the sales department.
The way in which customer support should be regarded can be learned from companies like Zappos, the shoe company which puts customer service above everything. They offer free shipping to their customers on all items, over 1000 brands to choose from, an unmatched 365-day return policy, and a friendly customer service that’s available 24/7. Customers are always happy to purchase from Zappos, and as they recommend their services to more and more of their friends, the company is the one which rejoices from an ever-increasing loyal customer database. We should all learn from this and treat our customers like they are the only ones in the world, since otherwise competition is the once which takes advantage of our mistakes.
What can we learn from this? is that you need to secure long term service for the customer. Make sure they are happy not just today, but tomorrow and the next day too. Offering a service that is solid will create loyalty and then customer service becomes easy.
Stefanie Amini is the Marketing Director and Specialist in Customer Success at WalkMe, the world’s first interactive online guidance system. She is chief writer and editor of I Want It Now, a blog for Customer Service Experts.Follow her @StefWalkMe WalkMe™ is Named “Cool Vendor” by Gartner and is Winner of Red Herring Top 100 Tech Startup Award.
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So true. But being a human I blame the messenger. As a manager I should know better…
How many people should be answering the phone at Zappos on a Saturday? What’s Southwest Airlines policy regarding hotel stays and cancelled flights? Should the knobs on the shower at the hotel go side by side or one above the other?
To be continued at Seth’s Blog: Who’s responsible for service desig
same content as the last disc of the delivering happiness audiobook!
Photocredit: Captain Crank
Found at At Zappos, Culture Pays.
Clue that something a little weird is happening at Zappos can be found near the bottom of the home page of the company’s website, where you’ll find lists with headings such as “Shop with Us” and “Customer Service,” beneath pictures of Anne Klein, Rockport, and Nike footwear; New Balance shirts; and Tommy Bahama shorts. Buried in one list is a link advising, “Don’t ever click here.” I did, of course, and the link opened a YouTube video of the Muppet rock band performing, as lead singer Beaker lip-syncs, “Never gonna give you up. Never gonna let you down.” It is a not-so-subtle message to Zappos’ customers and perhaps to its employees as well.
Another link opened a company-produced video in which employees talk about their favorite Zappos values — there are 10 values in total — with the same conviction and enthusiasm that the Muppet band brings to its musical antics. A clear winner: “Create fun and a little weirdness.”
To be continued at http://www.strategy-business.com/article/10311?gko=c784e&cid=enews20100914