A recent MYOB business survey found that the two main priorities for Christchurch businesses was understandably customer retention and customer acquisition. Many organisations interpret this as a need to spend more money on marketing and in many cases that is not what is initially required.
According to Chris Bell Managing Director of Customer Experiences a company specialising in the development of quality customer experiences, developing and improving customer experience performance and quality is the first move if any marketing investment is to deliver a reasonable returns.
Bell said customer loyalty is on the decline and not just in Christchurch but across the country. The main reason for this is the lack of quality customer service experiences and the increasing choices we have in a highly competitive environment.
Today we buy experiences not products and services. If the experience is missing the only other option is to focus on the price resulting in the current climate where, as customers, we are bombarded with price – the only competitive advantage business can come up with. Bell said that even in this environment customers are starting to demand the deal and the experience.
Business must understand that customer retention and loyalty is about the relationship between business and customer, not about the gimmicks business use to try and gain repeat business. As customers we are over so-called loyalty programmes. Customers want to be treated as individuals, they want to be respected and appreciated and they want solutions that are tailored for them, not what a business happens to have on the shelf.
Bell said it’s clear as customers we are more marketing savvy than ever. We no longer believe all the wild promises that some brands communicate in their marketing. We have been let down and disappointed too many times.
Business must understand that customer word of mouth recommendations, increasingly via social media, are becoming very powerful both positively and negatively. We know that 83 percent of customers will act first on a customer recommendation over all other forms of advertising.
The message is clear, according to Bell, develop a quality customer experience and align that experience with your marketing strategy.
Customer Experiences is a NZ based organisations specialising in the developing of high quality customer experiences. For further information – contact Chris Bell Managing Director Customer Experiences Ltd email email@example.com www.customerexperiences.co.nz
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