(Part 2 of 2)
Here is a simple question to answer in your strategic planning:
“Specifically which marketing and customer programs will have the biggest impact in getting us back on a growth track in the coming year?”
In Part 1 of our article, we covered 2 of our 4 big Covid-busting marketing ideas:
1. GET ALL YOUR PRODUCTS AND SERVICES ONLINE AND PURCHASABLE
2. BECOME AN EXPERT VIRTUAL EVENT MARKETER
Now in Part 2 of 2, we present two more ideas for you. These two ideas focus on building all-important customer advocates!
IDEA 3. FOCUS ON DELIVERING HIGH QUALITY SALES OPERATIONS
If I asked you this question, could you tell me the answer:
On a scale from 1 to 10 (10 is high), how satisfied are your customers with your product or service performance?
Did you know that customers who rate your company performance as ‘average’, or even ‘slightly above average’ (anything 8 or lower on the question above), will leave your company if they find someone better? It’s true. So how do we reduce this risk? Answer: Deliver a higher-level service than your competitors – in all phases of your business.
Here is a way to approach it. I recently did a quality analysis with one of my clients where we analyzed performance and challenges within sales operations. Here are the top 4 quality improvement steps identified:
- All incoming phone calls should be answered live by a person on the sales team, not handled by an automated system
- All quotes should be sent by the sales team, and all quotes and orders should be followed-up by the sales team within 48 hours (did delivery meet expectations?)
- Add a new position or responsibility with focus on the Internal Quality Process (IQP). Build, define and strengthen your new IQP program
- Raise visibility of KPIs related to customer performance – across all facets of the business. This includes any outsourced vendor partner performance. Remember, partners can hurt your quality if they do not perform!
You might say – we are already performing at a high-level. What we need to do is scale back because we have less business. How do we best do this without hurting our business performance? One idea is to simply ask your team. I did a short survey at one of my companies in December and asked them ‘In the coming year, which products should we put more money into – and which products should we kill?’ You would not believe the insight you get from this question! Your people are smart, and they want to help the business.
“High standards are contagious. Bring a new person onto a high standards team, and they’ll quickly adapt. The opposite is also true. If low standards prevail, those too will quickly spread.”Jeff Bezos, CEO Amazon
IDEA 4. LAUNCH A CUSTOMER LOYALTY PROGRAM
You might be finding amidst Covid that the average $ amount spent by your current customers has declined – so they are staying with you but they are spending less. One answer is to get more customers (See Part 1 of this Article!). Unfortunately, you might also be finding that you have outright lost some customers due to the Covid economic impact. Even if you have some economic reasons, you cannot let your business decline without a fight. Get personally involved if you are the CEO. Your attitude has to be that you will not let any customers leave. One strategy for ‘fighting’ is to build your own Customer Loyalty Program. If you can build a valuable loyalty program, an at-risk customer might have second thoughts about leaving because of the benefits they are receiving; and your good customers can become great customers – because the loyalty program ties them in even deeper to your company.
I recently worked with one of my clients to develop a Customer Loyalty Program for their business. Here are 6 elements that we determined were important to build into the program:
- Loyalty members get access to special pricing (This can be done in a variety of ways – promotions, events, etc.)
- Develop levels of service for the business, where customers under the premium recurring plan get access to the most benefits of the loyalty program
- Loyalty members get dedicated attention or support from the staff. (Define this)
- Customer referrals count toward a points program (e.g. Gamification). Benefit to the company is we get a referral that we can promote! (referrals can be a quote, a case study, a video, etc.)
- Add customer order and performance KPIs to your management and financial reporting. Do this monthly – not quarterly. Stay focused on the short-term during challenging times.
- Add a component to your program, that for every $100 our loyalty members spend, we will give $5 to our partner charity. Pick a charity that fits with your company’s mission and values. Your associates, customers, and partners will love and appreciate this!
“Some leaders just have the ability to turn on a dime and be ridiculously optimistic, which I’m beginning to think is half of everybody’s success.”Barbara Corcoran
The bottom line is this: You have probably lost some business due to the Covid economic impact. You stop this by cementing your relationship with your customer, and by refocusing the organization to serve them better than anyone else by far! If you take steps to do this now, your customers will become your advocate and they will not leave you – and that can take your business all the way to the top!
(Part 2 of 2)
Ready to explore your potential?
1. Contact Gary: garyross@InspireYourselfToday.net
2. Go to Amazon – look inside and order Gary’s new book The Growth Cube.
3. Or learn more about Unlocking the Growth Potential of your Business with Business Coaching Packages!