Investing in your customer service team and making sure they have the resources they need to thrive is essential to keeping your business afloat and ahead of the competition. After all, without happy customers, where would your business be?
Understanding your business is the key to delivering excellent customer service
You can't help others until you help yourself. To deliver good customer service you need to understand what it is that your business offers customers and the current customer experience strategy you have in place to either fix pain points, prevent future pain points, or improve resolved pain points.
If your customers aren't clear about the outcomes they are receiving, how can they evaluate whether it makes sense to keep using your product or service?
All good things come in threes
Years ago, businesses tried to over-complicate their customer relationship management (CRM). Collecting customer feedback is easy, it is knowing what it means for your customer service that is the challenging part. The good news is that Proto Partners have brought customer service teams back to their roots and simplified the process!
There are 3 areas that you need to address if you want to improve your customer satisfaction and offer positive customer service.
The Rule of Three is a powerful market research tool because it streamlines the complexities of customer experience management. Existing customers also value the streamlined approach because they can only hold three tangible outcomes in their heads that justify their loyalty to your brand.
#1 Can we fix something that isn't working?
If you want to improve your customer service you need to not only identify existing pain points along the customer journey but also resolve them. This could be anything from a broken link on your website to a problem with your product. It is important to take the time to fix these things as they will create a bad customer experience and may cause customers to take their business elsewhere.
#2 Can we prevent potential pain points?
If you can identify potential pain points before they happen, you can avoid them altogether. This could be something like proactively offering customer support or training to your team so they are prepared to deal with any issue that may come up.
#3 How can we improve something that is already working well?
Some things you and your customer support team might be doing well, but there is always room for improvement! Maybe there is a particular pain point that you have already resolved but you want to make sure it never happens again. Or maybe there is an area of your customer service that is good but you want to make it great. Whatever it is, if you can find ways to improve upon your current successes, you will create even more value for your customers.
So how does applying the rule of 3 lead to great customer service?
By focusing on just three areas – existing pain points, potential pain points, and improving on current successes – you can create a well-rounded customer experience strategy that will take your customer service from average to amazing. Three focus points:
- Gets your customer's attention and is memorable
- You are forced to choose the 3 most important outcomes for your customers
- You can be more structured, confident, and decisive when you speak to your customers
How to know what your 3 outcomes should be?
If you're not sure what your customers want or need, ask them! This is best achieved through qualitative research, for example, surveys, interviews, or even just casual conversation. Once you've identified what your customers want and need, you can start to work on creating a strategy to deliver those outcomes.
Should I aim for more than 3 outcomes?
Some companies make the mistake of thinking they need to offer more than three outcomes to their customers, but this is not the case. Offering more than three can be overwhelming for customers and make it difficult for them to understand the value you are providing.
It is also important to keep in mind that the three outcomes you choose should be focused on creating value for the customer, not just on improving your bottom line. This means that they should be outcomes that will make the customer's life easier, not just make it easier for them to do business with you.
If you can deliver on these three outcomes, you will be providing great value to your customers and they will be more likely to continue doing business with you. So, what are you waiting for? Start working on your customer experience strategy today!
Are your 3 outcomes clear to the customers?
The three outcomes you choose to focus on must be clear to your customers. There should be no confusion about what they are getting out of using your product or service. To be successful, you need to offer value and make sure your customer service reflects this.
For example, if you are a subscription-based service that offers access to exclusive content, your customers should know exactly what type of content they will have access to and how often new content will be added. If they don't, they will likely cancel their subscription.
When you have a clear understanding of what your business offers and the value you provide to customers, you can more easily select the three most important outcomes for them. These outcomes should be ones that customers care about and will remember.
What should the 3 outcomes be?
Your three outcomes could be anything from purchasing to becoming a member, to writing a review. It depends on your business and what you want customers to do. However, there are a few things to keep in mind when choosing your three outcomes.
First, the outcomes should create value for the customer. This means they should make the customer's life easier in some way or solve a problem they are having.
Second, the outcomes should be ones that you can deliver on. There is no point in promising something you can't provide. This will only lead to disappointed customers and could cause them to never do business with you again.
Finally, the outcomes should be realistic and achievable. You don't want to set yourself up for failure by choosing something impossible to achieve.
Keep these things in mind when selecting the three outcomes you want to focus on and you will be sure to create a customer experience strategy that is both valuable and achievable.
When we hold our client Customer Value Proposition workshops we ask the room:
- "What is your secret sauce?"
- "What do you do or strive to do so much better and different from the competition that does or would keep your customers coming back to you again and again?"
We often get met with stony silence and we understand why. It’s tough to boil down to just three things: that secret sauce that makes you different. At the same time, it’s important to clarify what differentiates your brand from your competitors.
What are Proto Partner's 3 customer service outcomes?
For example, Proto Partners' 3 outcomes are as follows:
- Our qualitative research is more rigorous than anyone else
- Our outputs are more tangible and actionable because we deeply understand the journey
- We are really commercial so you can use more of what we give you
It's important to remember that these outcomes need to be focused on creating value for the customer, not just on improving your bottom line. This means that they should be outcomes that will make the customer's life easier, not just make it easier for them to do business with you.
Customer Satisfaction should not be taken for granted
We understand that this can be challenging because it requires deep and critical thinking. It can also be a daunting task as you are on a quest to discover the bare bones of your business that you may have lost track of along the path of expansion. Large organisations with substantial revenues still operate with no clear Customer Value Propositions but only for a period of time.
However, as the CEO of one of our clients recently told us, "We could go on for another 6 months or a year and do nothing, but one day we will wake up and it will probably be too late. Our competitors will have stolen a march on us and our revenue will start contracting."
Loyal customers today will not necessarily be there the following day if your business fails to deliver a positive customer experience. We cannot take customer loyalty for granted and must take active steps to ensure that we are always offering amazing customer service.
So make customer service important to your business! Ensure you take the time to understand what it is exactly that makes you better and different from your competition. Get in touch with a customer experience expert today to begin your customer research journey.