It takes more than quality products and services to gain customer loyalty. It’s the “customer experience” that makes or breaks client ties. By developing a few simple habits, you can win new business and keep long-term customer relationships strong. Here are three habits worth reinforcing:
The Clarity Habit
Pay attention to the things you say. Be specific, and clarify anything that might be misinterpreted. Instead of saying, “I’ll call you right back,” give an exact time range. Your definition of “right back” may be different than your customer’s. Misunderstanding and misconceptions drive customers away. Clarity keeps customers coming back.
The Consistency Habit
Customer loyalty is earned when you consistently meet or exceed customer expectations. Sometimes new customers are given the royal treatment, only to have service taper off once the contract is signed. Make a habit of following a predefined set of customer service standards so every new customer interaction is as good as the last one.
The consistency habit requires your whole service team to follow the same set of standards (including the same phone, email, chat, and in-person procedures) so that every customer gets a consistently positive experience.
The Availability Habit
When customers want something, they want it RIGHT NOW! When a call or email comes in with a request, get in the habit of responding immediately to let them know you got their message. Even if it will take a few days to find the answer, contact them to give them a date and time by which you’ll have the information they need. Do this and watch customer loyalty rise.
What about you? What habits have you formed to create fierce customer loyalty?
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Marilyn Suttle is a customer experience expert, international speaker, and coauthor of the bestselling book, Who’s Your Gladys? How to Turn Even the Most Difficult Customer into Your Biggest Fan and Taming Gladys! The Busy Leader’s Guide to Creating Fierce Customer Loyalty. Marilyn delivers customer service and communication keynotes and workshops to help her audiences create strong, productive relationships in every area of life. For more information, email: firstname.lastname@example.org
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