Cathy has spoken very highly about her go-to-fix-it-all tailor for as long as I can remember. Jaimo has over the years turned Cathy into a loyal customer because of his readiness to work and his commitment to a job well done. She brags that whenever you give Jaimo anything, he will do a great job and also deliver whe
n he says he will.
Unfortunately, the story started changing in the past few months. Jaimo no longer keeps his word as he did previously. Sometimes he returns Cathy’s items without even attending to them – which frustrates her very much. Nevertheless, Cathy got extremely infuriated when Jaimo told her that even if she went off to another tailor, she would still end up bringing her clothes to him. This attitude really ticked her off and she bid their lengthy relationship good bye.
This got me wondering – what are the reasons that lead businesses, both big and small to begin loosing customers after years of building their loyalty. Well, I found a few interesting practices and habits that can lead your business downhill in a shorter period than it takes to call out your name.
An Over-inflated EGO
There was an article doing the rounds on social media that said EGO was an
acronym for ‘Edging God Out.’ Ego is when you feel and believe that you know it all. A person with an inflated ego is one who assumes that he/she is the ultimate answer and solution to everyone else and that others must regard him/her more highly than others. In his regular podcasts called the Mastery Session, Robin Sharma repeatedly teaches that ‘A bad day for the Ego is a great day for the Spirit.” Humility is crucial in keeping every person in check and grounded to reality. Humility makes you appreciate your customers for choosing you over your competitors. Humility reminds you to treat your employees, suppliers and other stakeholders with respect and hold them in regard. Humility paints a clear picture of how hard you have worked to create customers for your business and helps you stay focussed on keeping them satisfied.
An Attitude of Servitude
Those who have attended my Personal Branding Training Sessions can attest to the emphasis I give to exceptional service delivery. You cannot offer exemplary service if you do not embrace an attitude of service. If you treat your customers like they need you more than you need them, then all you need is a bit of time before you realise they have found alternatives. Every day that we present ourselves at work or open up the doors of our businesses, we get out to serve. You can choose to brood over it the entire day or serve with warmth and enthusiasm. Either way, the results will speak for themselves.
Keep your word
The most irritating and unnerving habit is unreliability. Customers prefer that you communicate a delay in service delivery in good time. When you fail to deliver at the expected time without informing the customer, then you inconvenience them. Convenience is highly rated as a factor to consider when choosing where to purchase your goods and services. Keep your word – or communicate any delays whenever you cannot meet your deadlines in order to avoid losing customers.
Commitment to quality service
Most customers would rather pay a higher premium and get great quality. The phrase ‘Cheap is expensive’ is experienced once you repeatedly choose cheaper products and services usually to your dissatisfaction. Products that are of inferior quality might not last or serve you to your expectations, leading you to either purchase again before your i
ntended time-frame or opting for the expensive option – costing you more in the long run. To create and maintain your customers’ loyalty, ensure that both your products and services are of the highest quality that you can offer.
There are many other factors that customers take into consideration when choosing to remain with a product or service provider for the long haul. (I wait to hear more from you).
However when all is said and done, to create and maintain customer loyalty starts and ends with keenly listening to your customers and giving them solutions that surpass their expectations. You must create exceptional customer experience each and every time to each and every client.
To your success!