So many times, singers and actors will win an award and thank the fans. They thank the people who buy their records and go to their movies and make them rich, at the end of the day. Companies would do well to take a leaf from that book and remember that the only reason a company can survive is by “fans” buying their products or services. So, how do companies keep their fan base pleased and coming back for more?
Customers want to know that they are the main reason for business. Companies not only have to remember that customers are the lifeblood of their business, but they have to make sure that the customers know that the companies appreciate them. This can be done in a variety of ways – having great customer service from every level of employee, working hard to constantly meet customer needs, and even doing small things like sending a gift out in the month of the customer’s birthday or rewarding customer loyalty with specialty coupons. These small output costs will increase overall costs in the long run and customers will appreciate them.
One thing that customers absolutely despise is when companies lie to them or attempt to dupe them in some way. Customers aren’t stupid, and whatever gains a company can get from a falsehood will be lost tenfold when the untruth comes out. Don’t advertise one price and then slam the customer with hidden fees. Don’t pretend to be environmentally conscious because “being green” is trending right now, but still use non-recycled products. Don’t claim that food products are locally sourced and import bananas from Brazil. And so on and so forth. Sure, it’s tempting to have a bigger bottom line, but just remember how the mighty fall.
Seems counterproductive, right? As a company, the main goal is, well, to sell a product or service. But what I mean is, don’t make a sales pitch. The customer isn’t the board room. They need a different strategic initiative than investors. It’s simple. Concentrate on making the product or service as perfect as possible for the customer will drive sales. It will, essentially, sell itself. One of the worst experiences a customer can have is walking into a store or business and being pressured to buy something. Even if the employees work on commission, make sure they know how to treat a customer. Customers are real people, after all, not just walking credit cards. Hard to conceptualize, I know. But the fact of the matter is that customers want to feel valued for who they are. Reframing the way the company views and interacts with customers can make a huge difference to the overall bottom line.