Customer satisfaction is a huge factor in the success or failure of your marketing campaign. If customers are unhappy with your product or service, they’re not likely to stick around for long. Customer satisfaction plays a huge role in customer retention. That’s why it’s so important to make sure that your customers are satisfied with what you’re offering.
There are a few key things that you can do to make sure that your customers are satisfied with your product or service. First, make sure that you’re offering a quality product or service. If your product or service is inferior, customers are not going to be satisfied. Second, make sure that you’re providing good customer service. If customers have a problem, they should be able to easily get in touch with someone who can help them. Finally, make sure that you’re offering a fair price. If customers feel like they’re being overcharged, they’re not going to be happy.
Poor customer service: a hidden business killer
There’s a local car dealer who advertises a lot. Like more than any other in the area. So much, that I was curious as to the reason for it. I learned why during a visit to a very busy local mechanic’s shop.
I had recently moved to the area. Several people recommend this particular shop. It had built a reputation of being trustworthy and honest. Despite being a 45 minute drive from my home, I regularly had my cars serviced there.
One morning, I noticed that one of my cars had a flat tire. Fortunately, I didn’t have to leave my home office that day. I pumped up the tire and drove it to a nearby national tire chain location. It was due for an oil change, so I decided to have them change the oil while I was there.
Thirty minutes after dropping the car off, I got a phone call from the national chain. They said my car needed $1200 worth of repairs. I was quickly reminded of why I traveled 45 minutes to see the mechanic I trust. I told the national tire chain employee to just change the oil and repair the tire. He then launched into a tirade about how dangerous it was to ignore these problems.
I promptly took the car to the mechanic I trust. He did a thorough inspection – and assured me that no repairs were needed.
That’s why I drive 45 minutes to get my oil changed. I trust this guy. He’s earned it. One day, I asked the owner about a sign that hung inside his garage. The sign read “Please do not do business with [local car dealer name]. ” It was the same car dealer who advertises so much. My mechanic was happy to shared the story behind the sign. Even though the incident happened over a decade ago, the sign still hangs in his shop today.
Please don’t do business with this evil entity
An older couple had religiously brought their cars to this mechanic for service. When the husband passed away, his wife was overcome with grief. It took her a year to be able to drive her late husband’s car to the shop for an oil change. She couldn’t bear to keep the car and wanted to get a new one. The shop owner recommended the car dealer mentioned on his sign.
She returned to his shop a week later. She tearfully told him they had locked her in a room for hours. They relentlessly pressured to buy the top of the line model. The salesman then added everything possible to the car. He even added light up wheel caps and a 10 year non-transferable extended warranty. The shop owner told me he was livid. The woman was in her late 90’s. Selling her a lighted wheel caps and a 10 year non-transferable extended warranty was inexcusable. Feeling responsible, he contacted the car dealer.
The dealer’s staff informed him that the woman was an adult. She was capable of making her own buying decisions.
He had made the recommendation and she had suffered for it. As a result, he launched his own personal vendetta and began to tell anyone who would listen about this tale. He was invited to speak at senior center community events. He appeared on talk radio shows. He was interviewed by local news media. He then had dozens of the signs made. They were displayed in senior centers and other stores throughout the area.
After hearing the tale behind the signs, I realize the “why” behind the car dealership’s very aggressive advertising campaign. That’s why I say,
Businesses with great customer retention get better ROI from their marketing
Make no mistake – you won’t find marketing success without a large measure of customer satisfaction.
In the days prior to the world wide web and the ensuing social media explosion – the holy grail of marketing was word of mouth advertising. In a nutshell, word of mouth marketing depends upon customer satisfaction to generate “buzz” in the community. One satisfied customer tells another and suddenly, a business would find it’s sales growing without spending precious dollars on traditional advertising.
In a vicious “catch 22” the very businesses who could benefit the MOST from a traditionally orchestrated marketing campaign were the ones least likely to do so. These hard working small businesses could count on their supremely satisfied customers to spread the word.
A business that delights it’s customers is the one most likely to see results from a properly executed marketing campaign.
A well executed marketing campaign will literally destroy a business that isn’t already skilled in the art and science of customer satisfaction.
Count on it. The best advertising campaign will bring new customers to your business… and then it’s up to you and your staff to live up to the promises you made in that advertising campaign.
I’ve written before about unrealistic marketing expectations….
I am working with a client who has done EVERYTHING right. She tightly targeted her marketing efforts to focus on a specific target or niche audience. Not only was her marketing tightly targeted, she even tightly targeted her product offering. She began this process long before she had read my book Beyond the Niche: Essential Tools You Need to Create Marketing Messages that Deliver Results.
Even though she hadn’t read my book, she had followed the steps outlined in the book beautifully. Her product was not only tightly targeted to a specific market, it also addressed an issue which literally CONSUMED her target audience.
So, it wasn’t surprising that after launching a new web site marketing strategy with a redesigned web site, new business blog and an email newsletter, that she began enjoying phenomenal success. After 6 short months the results were literally amazing. Her newsletter had a 76% sign up rate. That meant that out of 100 visitors to her site, 76 were signing up for her newsletter. (For the rest of us, an average sign up rate for an online newsletter is about 13 %.)
My client’s sales were climbing and customer service was effortless because customers were delighted with her product. Yet, my client was upset. Turns out, she had been making the “info guru free teleclass” rounds and as a result, her expectations for her marketing were really out of line.
Sometimes – it’s hard in our current culture – where most marketing messages seem to be a study in hyperbole – to see how making the sale on the back of establishing unrealistic expectations is like blowing your nose with a tissue filled with sneezing powder. You’ll make a few short term sales, but they won’t return.
No matter how successful your marketing efforts are – they will never be able to overcome an inherent lack of customer satisfaction.
Seek first not to understand – but rather to delight your customers. Delight your customers and the rest is relatively easy.