Customer experience makes all the difference in reducing churn and increasing retention.
It’s no secret that improving your customer experience game can help you reduce turnover and raise revenues.
When it comes to the customer relationship, most businesses fall into one of two categories: transactional or experiential. Transactional customer relationships are nothing more than the exchange of money for products or services. There’s nothing extraordinary about these customer relationships, and they’re easily replaceable.
Experiential customer relationships are a different story. In these relationships, the exchange of money buys more than just a product or service; it buys a feeling, an experience and, most importantly, something that can’t be easily replicated by a competitor.
For example, most people would agree that there’s a big difference between Disney World and Six Flags. Both are fun (and expensive), but one provides a far more memorable experience than the other. Disney provides an exceptional customer experience, which is why people are more than willing to pay to go there, time and time again.
Assuming you already know your audience and have a vision in mind for your customer experience program, here are four simple ways to improve your customer experience.
Get rid of your boring old rewards program
Think you’re instilling loyalty in your customers by giving them a 10-percent-off rewards card? Guess again. Today’s consumers are no longer impressed by nominal monetary rewards; and a majority of the time, rewards cards end up in the garbage can.
So, how can you reward your loyal customers? Opt for experiential rewards instead. Offering experiences in lieu of discounts is the future of customer loyalty.
For example, when Sephora offered a free makeover in exchange for a certain number of purchases, not only were customers excited, but it also prompted customers to share on social media, effectively launching a mini-marketing campaign.
If you’re a lifestyle brand, offer free travel rewards or if you’re a B2B company, try offering free training or coaching for loyal, repeat customers. Feel free to get creative with your rewards program; but whatever you do, rip up those obsolete customer loyalty cards and keep the customer experience in mind. Contrary to popular belief, money isn’t always the biggest motivator.
Support customers the way they want to be supported
Still dragging your feet on going mobile with customer support? Stop it. Modern consumers want options when it comes to customer service.
Consider implementing a live chat option on your website and hiring someone to respond to customer inquiries on your social media pages. Not only will your customers be grateful for having options, but you’ll also give your team the opportunity to put out fires before they begin.
Customers of today have more information at their fingertips than ever before. And if your organization has something to hide, no doubt customers will eventually find it.
Stay ahead of the curve by being transparent from day one. You can do this by being transparent in your customer satisfaction ratings, customer reviews and even your financial projections (if it’s relevant).
Personalization isn’t dead
Many customer experience hacks have become obsolete with the rise of technology. But when it comes to personalization, it’s anything but dead.
Personalization can come in the form of hand-written thank you cards, holiday cards and birthday discounts. Too many tech-savvy companies overlook personalization in the age of everything automated. But a little bit really can go a long way in keeping customers happy and loyal.
Your customers are your biggest asset
A few small, simple changes to the way you approach the customer experience truly can make all the difference. By focusing on the customer experience, you can turn your customers and clients into raving, loyal fans and your biggest brand evangelists.
Photo credit: Shutterstock / Syda Productions