Improving Your Customer Focus

Customer Focus Are you really “customer focused”? Or is that just a part of your mission statement because you thought it sounded good, but have no idea how to really implement it?

While surveys show a majority of customers would pay more for a better customer experience, only 1 percent of those customers thought their current vendors were actually doing a good job.

Remember, when customers choose a small business instead of a larger one, they’re usually looking for a personalized and better customer experience.

Here’s how to give it to them:

1. Identify Why a Customer Chooses You

Start by making a list of all the reasons a customer would choose your service or product over another. What is it that makes your business stand out over the competition? This may be the overall value they receive from your company, or perhaps the level of customer service you provide. Maybe it has to do with your previous experience in that customer’s vertical. Whatever the case may be, knowing exactly why they chose you can help you position yourself for success in that relationship and future ones. 

survey_customers.jpg2. Survey Existing Customers

Conduct a customer focus group or informal survey among your loyal customers and ask them the same question: Why do they keep buying from you? The answer may not be the one you think.

3. Ask Customers Constantly

Don’t stop asking questions. “How did that product or service work out for you?” “Was there anything you would have liked done differently or better?” “Anything you didn’t need?” Customer engagement is key to keeping your focus where it should be. 

4. What Problem Do You Solve?

problem_solution.pngFigure out how your products or services actually help your customers. This knowledge equips you to better solve their problems in the future, and to articulate how your produce or service is valuable to prospects. 

5. Focus On the Long-Term

Treat each customer like you’re starting a long-term relationship, and not just selling for the short term. In fact, it is more cost effective to retain current clients than to onboard a new client. This should motivate you to focus on building lasting relationships. 

brain_power.jpg6. Knowledge is Power

Use a good CRM program to take notes on customers, and make those files accessible to all your employees. Using a software program like HubSpot can also empower you with further information about the marketing campaigns and communications that resonate with your current client base. 

7. It Takes a Village

Make sure customer focus is a priority for everyone in your company, but remember this starts at the top. If your commitment to customer focus isn’t clear to your employees, they will most likely fail in this area. Be transparent with your employees about the importance of customer relationships. 

8. Learn For the Next Time

If you lose a customer don’t just let it go. Try to figure out why you lost them and adjust your customer focus accordingly. This approach might save you from losing valuable customers further down the line, and can strengthen your business. 

Understanding your customers is key to providing them with the services and products that they actually need and want. And being open to feedback allows for better communication between you and your clients. 


Photo Credit: AnsonLu/iStock/Thinkstock