For the love of God, stop trying to drive new customers to your company if you’re not ready to treat them like a customer when they get there.
Companies of all sizes are falling all over themselves to make sure that they are using all the current delivery vehicles to send a sales message to their target — Facebook, Twitter, blogs, and email blasts are the preferred form of advertising message delivery.
Not a week goes by where I don’t see a vivid example of a company that simply has not gotten its own house in order before inviting others over.
We all know that customer service is the hot topic in boardrooms across America. Every company wants customer feedback, and they will go all out to get their customer to provide that feedback through a wide variety of surveys, from the ones you get invited to participate in on your foot-long receipt to the one that rears its head in the follow-up “customer service” phone call we all love to get.
The truth is that instead of spending all that time and money to poll your existing customers, most companies would be significantly better off if they focused on employee training and re-training first. Just read a page right from the Apple playbook.
Customers are more demanding, and that is a good thing. This new-found sense of customer entitlement has been brought about by years of being forced to endure rude, disinterested, and substandard service from employees of companies that we do business with.
Companies that want to grow long-term can ensure their future success by investing today in customer retention. And customers are retained when they are treated well.
Marketers of the world — get the order of things straight.
- Train your employees to perform at the highest level in their industry. Not at the same level as your competitors, but above them. This is a huge opportunity for smaller, local businesses to outperform their big-box competitors.
- Make your current customers happy. Sell them as much as you can, as often as you can without overwhelming them.
- Go out and find new customers. If you lead them correctly, the positive stories and feedback from #2 will make their way into your social media campaign.