Tag: Client Retention

Protect Your Brand and Preserve Your Reputation or Else!

In today’s increasingly competitive marketplace, small businesses must be quicker, more agile, and far more creative to adapt, respond, and effectively meet customers’ ever-changing preferences and demands. Customers and prospects of the Digital Information Age are more knowledgeable than ever before. Unfortunately, customers are also more fickle, too. 

Did you know that an unsatisfied customer will tell 9 to 15 people about her bad, frustrating experience?  

One can only imagine how that number has increased exponentially as a result of the world’s newfound addiction to the social networking phenomenon…As you’re reading this blog, you better not have any of your social media sites also open! 

On a more serious note, be sure to turn off all your social media notifications if you haven’t already – they can be a huge distraction and time-suck!  You’re better than that and it’s time to focus (by the way, you only have 158 words left to read here)! 

As I was saying, the rampant sharing of a horrendous shopping experience or an unpleasant customer service encounter on social networking sites can instantly tarnish a firm’s reputation. Repeat offenders that constantly receive negative survey results or have angry, colorful diatribes hurled in their direction in chat rooms will certainly lose customers and market share.

By constantly updating and tracking customer interactions in a centralized CRM throughout all of its locations, small businesses should be able to better serve customers and respond more quickly to their questions, concerns, and suggestions. Thus, companies can mitigate the risk and likelihood of a viral smear campaign and maintain and even improve their reputation that they have worked so hard to uphold in the marketplace.

Legendary investor Warren Buffett said it best:

“It takes 20 years to build a reputation and five minutes to ruin it. If you think about that, you’ll do things differently.”

Will you start to do things differently?

Your Brand’s Extinction May Be Closer Than You Think

You may have seen recently that Elon Musk’s Tesla will be joining the S&P 500 by the end of the year.  This announcement reminded me of a pivotal Executive Briefing that I had read entitled Creative Destruction Whips Through Corporate America by Innosight, a leading consulting firm focused on global strategy and innovation. 

This report came to mind because it reveals that the average lifespan of companies in the large-cap S&P 500 Index is significantly shrinking:

As far back as 1964, the average tenure of firms in the S&P was 33 years. Recently in 2016, that number shortened to just 24 years and it is predicted to shrink to just 12 years by 2027. Furthermore, Innosight’s research goes on to assert that 50% of the current companies traded in the S&P will be supplanted by 2027 if this current churn rate and turnover continue to accelerate. 

Evidently, large firms (really, firms of all sizes) need to take action and avoid the corporate hubris trap or they face the risk of severely underperforming, falling behind, and having their brand no longer be relevant.  

𝘎𝘦𝘵𝘵𝘺 𝘐𝘮𝘢𝘨𝘦𝘴

Where to Aim First if Your Market Share is Declining

No one wants to see their brand lose ground quickly or even get completely swept away by younger, hipper, and hungrier upstart competitors.

To prevent their demise and loss of market share, organizations need to become more in tune with their customers’ needs and more agile to improve the customer experience and enhance service levels.

Investing in a leading-edge CRM platform, that is scalable, flexible, and highly intuitive, is a great place to kick start this transformation and strategic initiative.

How CRM Can Help

Armed with a centralized CRM solution will improve the firm’s knowledge of its clients, prospects, and partners, thereby allowing deeper bonds to be forged. Having such a comprehensive 360-degree understanding of all existing and potential customers plus key strategic stakeholders will empower employees across the enterprise to make quicker, more informed decisions. The result will be a more collaborative environment in which marketing, sales, and service associates communicate more effectively and efficiently. Finding it easier to connect with clients and co-workers, employees will become more united, more engaged, more accountable, and more willing to go the extra mile to provide a unique, differentiated level of service that will lead to more satisfied and loyal customers, which in turn will generate more referrals.

With CRM, the company will spend less time struggling to find info to resolve client issues and complaints and more time segmenting, targeting, and closing higher-margin customers with much higher lifetime values to the firm. Moreover, CRM’s robust pipeline forecasting capabilities will help identify top-selling products/services and trending customer demands/requests. These real-time sales analytics tools will provide the insights and actionable intelligence necessary to not only shorten sales cycles and increase revenue but also enable the firm to make the necessary adjustments to overcome apparent product gaps or upcoming sales downturns.

All in all, CRM will serve as the framework and foundation for your client intelligence. With better organizational coordination and more command of customer info, CRM will become the growth driver of the firm. Plus, it will become much easier to thwart off rising stalwarts, maintain brand relevance, sustain one’s leadership and market share positions, and even avoid extinction.

Are you losing ground to competitors and experiencing a surge in client defections?

Are your sales and service teams handcuffed by lack of client intel, operational bottlenecks, and manual, inefficient processes?

Do you have a brand obscurity problem?

Don’t risk becoming further irrelevant or even extinct…CONTACT US to speak with one of our tenured turnaround specialists or seasoned strategic marketing consultants.

High-Quality Customer Experiences Equals Higher Stock Returns!

The CFI Group, an Ann Arbor, MI think tank focused on customer satisfaction and feedback analytics, occasionally releases research findings showing that the level of a publicly-traded company’s customer satisfaction directly correlates to the firm’s stock price. For one of its studies, the CFI Group managed and tracked a portfolio of stocks based on their performance in the American Customer Satisfaction Index (ACSI) and the National Customer Satisfaction Index UK (NCSI-UK). The portfolio results were then compared to the benchmark S&P 500 in the case of U.S. companies and the FTSE 100 for firms in the United Kingdom.   

Overall, their research found that the top companies on the ACSI and NCSI-UK, which represented the ones with the highest customer satisfaction scores, significantly outperformed their competitors and the overall stock market.

Key conclusions from the report are highlighted below:

  • The ACSI portfolio of U.S. companies returned 390% vs. the S&P 500 return of -7% (from April 2000 to April 2012)
  • The NSCI portfolio of UK companies returned 59% vs. the FTSE 100 return of -6% (from April 2007 to June 2011)

As Claes Fornell, the CFI Group and ACSI founder and University of Michigan professor, states:

“Companies with highly satisfied customers generate superior returns because customer satisfaction is critical for repeat business, and that type of business is usually very profitable. That is, loyal customers tend to be highly profitable as long as their loyalty comes from their satisfaction and not because prices are low.”

Image by Tumisu from Pixabay

On a related and more recent note, Watermark Consulting, a customer experience consultancy, analyzed the stock market performance of the Top 10 Leaders and Top 10 Laggards in Forrester Research’s Customer Experience Index compared to the broader S&P 500 Index from 2007 to 2017.  

Their significant findings include:

  • The total cumulative return of the Customer Experience Leaders portfolio was nearly three times higher than the Laggards (183.8% vs. 63.1%).
  • The total cumulative return of the Customer Experience Leaders portfolio was 45 points higher than the S&P 500 (183.8% vs. 138.7%).
  • The total cumulative return of the Customer Experience Laggards portfolio was almost 76 points lower than the S&P 500 (63.1% vs. 138.7%).

It’s indisputable that companies investing in improving their overall customer experience are being rewarded by not just their customers, but also their shareholders.

Not to be outdone, another study over an even longer time frame came to the same conclusion.  In this case, Fortune with the help of FTSE Russell, a global money manager and institutional consultant, discovered that companies named to the Fortune annual “Best Companies to Work For” list, typically “demonstrate stronger financial performance, reduced turnover, and better customer and patient satisfaction than their peers.”  

In fact, the outperformance is quite substantial when comparing the annual returns from 1998 to 2016:  

  • An equal weighted index of the top 100 companies to work for on the Fortune list returned 11.66% annually which was almost 5% higher than two other key benchmarks over the same stretch:
    • The Russell 3000 Index, a U.S. all cap benchmark, returned just 6.72%.  
    • The Russell 1000 Index, a U.S. large cap benchmark, returned only 6.68%.

It’s clear that companies with more satisfied customers tend to outperform the stock market, while companies with disloyal and frustrated customers typically underperform the broader stock market.

The first step to enhancing customer experience quality in order to boost customer satisfaction is to better understand the needs of one’s customers. 

It is safe to assume that the companies with high customer experience scores currently leverage a leading flexible and scalable CRM platform to track customer preferences, patterns, and purchasing history in order to:

  • Deliver more targeted messaging
  • Respond quicker to customer requests
  • Streamline customer interaction touchpoints
  • Improve client satisfaction levels
  • Consistently provide a better and unique customer experience

Customer experience leaders and pioneers have happier, trusting clients that are less sensitive to price and far easier to service. Their greater loyalty leads to more referrals, higher retention rates, and expansion of client wallet share. All of these benefits result in higher revenues, lower acquisition costs, increased earnings, and ultimately a boost in company stock prices.

To sum up, having a clear, effective customer experience strategy driven by highly engaged employees and a robust, centralized CRM system can transform your firm from a product-centric to a client-centric culture in route to elevating your customer service and outperforming not only your competition, but also the stock market overall.

Ready to innovate your employee and customer experience and improve your financial performance?   

CONTACT US today to speak with one of our customer experience strategists and profit acceleration advisors about how we can take your business or practice to the next level.

Provide 5-Star Service and Optimize Customer Delight with RevSherpas

What if I told you that consumers will tell 16 people about subpar service encounters?… Conversely, they will inform only nine others about positive, memorable customer service experiences.

Did you know that consumers value quality customer service so much that they will pay more to receive it?… In fact, 70% indicated they would spend 13% more on average with businesses that deliver stellar service.  As you can see, higher customer satisfaction levels lead to more spending!

Are you aware that 78% have canceled a transaction or taken their business elsewhere upon encountering negative, frustrating customer service?… If it wasn’t obvious already, consumers will indeed rebel with their wallets and then proceed to influence and persuade many others to avoid those lackluster establishments as well.

These findings and more originated from the American Express® Global Customer Service Barometer reports on consumer sentiment concerning the state of customer service in America… Pretty interesting survey findings, right?

It’s clear that customer experience can profoundly impact client acquisition, engagement, and retention.  Although this research study is typically targeted towards individuals, it is safe to say that the same attitudes and preferences on customer service hold true in the B2B world as well.

Image by Gerd Altmann from Pixabay

Companies that differentiate themselves from the competition by providing superior customer service will earn repeat business from clients and begin to receive more referrals. On the other hand, customers that do not consistently deliver positive and meaningful customer experiences will suffer instant client churn and defections and lose drastic revenue.

Based on our ten plus years of experience in working on high-priority, high-profile customer experience management strategic initiatives for rapidly growing small businesses and global financial institutions, our client results match up with the findings of American Express.  By continually measuring, monitoring, and improving the customer experience, firms can be more in tune with evolving service preferences and provide better service to their high-value clients and outperform their competition.

If you are looking to considerably improve your customer retention rates, response times to customer inquiries, customer lifetime values (LTV), and customer satisfaction rates year in and year out, RevSherpas can help.

The RevSherpas Customer Experience Strategy Consulting Services Suite:

  • Customer Relationship Management (CRM) Readiness Assessments
  • CRM RFP Vendor Selection, ROI, and Business Case Formulation
  • Digital Customer Experience (CX) Transformation Strategic Roadmaps
  • Sales and Marketing Current State Audits
  • Customer Journey Mapping and Future State Process Improvement
  • Market Dominating Brand Positioning and Lead Generation Maximization
  • Account Segmentation and Pricing Optimization
  • Client Retention/Reactivation Strategies
  • Voice-of-the-Customer (VoC) Feedback Surveys and Analysis
  • Memorable “Wow” Customer Experience Design
  • Employee Engagement Assessments and Organizational Change Management

Due to our extensive CRM and revenue growth acceleration consulting background, we’ve developed a solid understanding of the complex challenges facing inundated business owners in today’s extremely volatile economy and highly competitive landscape. We’ve seen firsthand how the prevalent use of flawed, ineffective marketing tactics, cumbersome sales pipeline opportunity tracking tools, and the overreliance on decentralized client data stifles the operational efficiency, decision-making velocity, and growth of many businesses across a multitude of industries.

Luckily for small to mid-sized businesses, the recent onslaught of technological innovations and improvements in mobile, cloud computing, P2P payment systems, artificial intelligence, and robotics has made streamlining and automating core marketing, sales, customer engagement, and service activities easier and more affordable than ever before!

In fact, many sophisticated prospecting, lead tracking, sales pipeline management, and marketing autoresponder solutions that were previously only available at the larger enterprise level for Fortune 500 corporations and leading global brands are now accessible to everyone, including both established and aspiring, hungry business owners, such as yourself.

Let us show you how to set up systems in as little as sixty days that increase your client retention, repeat purchases, renewals, referrals, and revenue without having to spend a dime on marketing or hiring a team of 20 high-priced management consultants!

Please call (800)569-1374 or email Sales@RevSherpas.com if you would like to further vet, evaluate, and candidly discuss how we can quickly elevate your service levels to stand out from their competition.

We are committed to empower and enable local, mission-driven businesses to exponentially outperform in any economy and avoid brand extinction.

Will yours be next?

Stellar Service Is Vital To Your Success (“Same As It Ever Was”)

Recently, we came across an excellent inventory of Customer Service Quotes from legendary business leaders, past and present.  Thank you to Salesforce for capturing and compiling these quotes.  It’s rare to find so many solid quotes consolidated together on a business strategy so near and dear to our hearts.

As CRM strategists and customer experience improvement and innovation experts, the RevSherpas consulting practice is passionate about delivering optimal service to our clients.  Moreover, during our client engagements, we always underscore the importance of providing unrivaled customer service to reduce churn, increase satisfaction and loyalty, and ultimately grow revenues.

While other consultants and coaches typically try to convince you to utilize the latest social media shiny object tactic of the day, we’re far more into cultivating deeper relationships with your prospects, clients, and referral sources. 

It’s much more effective and just makes more business sense.  After all, our motto in our logo does say, “Client Focused.  Elevated Results.”

What’s interesting is that many of the quotes and points of view that were established in the 1800s are still valid today.  In fact, they are so legit that they serve as the fundamentals of how to effectively grow and scale a business even now.

To begin, let’s take a look at some of our favorite quotes from the pioneers of Retail.

“THE OLD SCHOOL”

Marshal Field, founder of Marshall Field and Company, the Chicago-based department stores:

“The customer is always right.”

“Assume that the customer is right until it is plain beyond all question he is not.”

“Give the lady what she wants.”

“Goodwill is the one and only asset that competition cannot undersell or destroy.”

Harry Gordon Selfridge, American-British retail magnate who founded the London-based department store Selfridges:

“Honesty always pays.”

“People will sit up and take notice of you if you will sit up and take notice of what makes them sit up and take notice.”

“Get the confidence of the public and you will have no difficulty in getting their patronage.”

“Treat [the customer] as guests when they come and when they go, whether or not they buy.”

John Wanamaker, founder of department stores, including Philadelphia-based Wanamaker’s; Also, invented the price tag and was the first merchant to utilize advertising agencies:

“When a customer enters my store, forget me. He is king.”

“Courtesy is the one coin you can never have too much of or be stingy with.”

“Courtesies cannot be borrowed like snow shovels; you must have some of your own.”

Again, many of the above quotes were declared by individuals born in the 1830s and 1850s!  Yet, their philosophies still hold up and are applicable in the present environment…they’re really the “SAME AS IT EVER WAS!”

https://www.amazon.com/Same-Ever-Was-Talking-Heads/dp/B0028G1OU4

To balance out the “old school” perspectives, we also wanted to share some fascinating quotes on the importance of customer service from current CEOs and business leaders representing the “new school” as seen below.

“THE NEW SCHOOL”

Bill Gates, co-founder of Microsoft and philanthropist:

“Your most unhappy customers are your greatest source of learning.”

Dr. Gary P. Hamel, founder of Strategos, a management consulting firm:

“Most of us understand that innovation is enormously important. It’s the only insurance against irrelevance. It’s the only guarantee of long-term customer loyalty…It doesn’t matter much where your company sits in its industry ecosystem, nor how vertically or horizontally integrated it is—what matters is its relative ‘share of customer value’ in the final product or solution, and its cost of producing that value.”

Elon Musk, founder/CEO of Tesla, SpaceX, and The Boring Company, among many other companies (does he ever sleep?):

“I think it’s very important to have a feedback loop, where you’re constantly thinking about what you’ve done and how you could be doing it better.”

Jeff Bezos, founder/CEO of Amazon:

“We see our customers as invited guests to a party, and we are the hosts. It’s our job every day to make every important aspect of the customer experience a little bit better.”

Tony Hsieh, CEO of Zappos; Previously was co-founder of LinkExchange:

“We take most of the money that we could have spent on paid advertising and instead put it back into the customer experience. Then we let the customers be our marketing.”

Joseph Jaffe, consultant and thought leader on growth, marketing, and innovation:

“Customer Service is everything and anything that touches a customer – directly or indirectly. Customer service means servicing customers, and it’s so much more than just solving problems or addressing complaints. Customer service is part of a holistic customer experience that is capable of providing a critical competitive advantage in today’s increasingly cluttered and commoditized marketplace.”

Larry Page, co-founder of Google:

“We have a mantra: don’t be evil, which is to do the best things we know how for our users, for our customers, for everyone.”

Marc Benioff, founder/Chairman/CEO of Salesforce:

“The future of communicating with customers rests in engaging with them through every possible channel: phone, e-mail, chat, Web, and social networks. Customers are discussing a company’s products and brand in real time. Companies need to join the conversation.”

Richard Branson, founder of Virgin Group:

“Setting customer expectations at a level that is aligned with consistently deliverable levels of customer service requires that your whole staff, from product development to marketing, works in harmony with your brand image.”

Sam Walton, founder of Walmart and Sam’s Club:

“There is only one boss – the customer. And he can fire everybody in the company from the chairman on down, simply by spending his money somewhere else.”

Seymour Fine, marketing expert:

“When a customer complains, he is doing you a special favor; he is giving you another chance to serve him to his satisfaction. You will appreciate the importance of this opportunity when you consider that the customer’s alternative option was to desert you for a competitor.”

Shep Hyken, customer service expert:

“True loyalty doesn’t come because of an app. It doesn’t come because you have a punch card where after ten punches you get a free sandwich. It is about the relationship. Take away those “perks” and would the customer still be loyal?”

Steve Jobs, co-founder/Chairman/CEO of Apple:

“Get closer than ever to your customers. So close that you tell them what they need well before they realize it themselves.”

Walt Disney, founder of The Disney Company, animation pioneer, and film producer:

“Whatever you do, do it well. Do it so well that when people see you do it, they will want to come back and see you do it again, and they will want to bring others and show them how well you do what you do.”

Zig Ziglar, motivational speaker and sales trainer:

“Statistics suggest that when customers complain, business owners and managers ought to get excited about it. The complaining customer represents a huge opportunity for more business.”

These customer service philosophies are truly time-tested and they should be at the cornerstone of your digital customer experience transformation strategic initiatives. Any company in the midst of becoming more client-focused and shifting from a product-centric to a client-centric mindset to better serve its customer base can likely utilize many of these famous quotes as the guiding principles for the changing of their company culture.

As for your company, are you in need of assistance in designing and revamping your customer experience and CRM strategy?

Have your service levels been declining and running into frequent bottlenecks and backlogs lately?

Have you been experiencing high customer turnover of late?

If so, it’s probably time to simplify, standardize, and improve your client service operations!  Please email Hello@RevSherpas.com to request an initial discovery and strategy consultation.

Lastly, we encourage you to leave a comment below to let us know what your most-liked quote in this article is or if you have another favorite customer service, CRM, or customer experience management quote not listed here. 

Thanks!