Focus on the customer experience. What’s it really like dealing with your business? Do a blind test and see whether your business and your team really want customers and sales. For most businesses, you’re not delivering a product/ service, your delivering an experience.
What do your customers really want and can you give it to them and still make a profit? Starbucks closed 61 stores in Australia by 2008 (73% of their stores). They misunderstood the sophistication of Australia’s coffee market and no amount of advertising was going to make us change our barista. Continued over the page...
Solve the problem. What is it that your business does for your customers? The more you can solve the problems they face and make life easier, the more likely it is that customers will choose you over your competition. It might be as simple as refining how customers choose and order your product, access to information that is valuable (think of the freight companies who offer freight tracking and schedules of a customer’s history) through to product development (online banking didn’t always exist).
Know your product. Do all of your staff know your product or service and do they know what to say about it? The business might seem simple to you but your staff might not naturally realise what needs to be done or said. Inexperienced or poorly trained staff are a huge turn off to all but the keenest customers.
Not everyone wants to be your friend. For many years marketers told you to develop a close relationship with your clients. As a result, everyone wanted you on their database primarily to market to you (almost zero value to your customer). There is no question that there is a value to having a tangible customer base. But realise that your customers are looking for different relationships with different businesses. Understand what it is they want from you and develop the relationship from there. If you make contact give them value - don’t just talk at them about your product.