Why customers walk away from your brand

Brands + Business x Christine Moody*

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In The Huffington Post article, ’10 Ways to Make Customers Fall in Love with Your Business’, Brian Honigman presents some interesting data about customer service:

  • Only 37 percent of brands received good or excellent customer experience index scores in 2012. Whereas, 64 percent of brands got a rating of “OK,” “poor” or “very poor” from their customers. SourceForrester Research
  • As many as 89 percent of consumers began doing business with a competitor following a poor customer experience. SourceRightNow
  • Up to 60 percent of consumers will pay more for a better customer experience. SourceDesk
  • Average annual value of each customer relationship lost to a competitor or abandoned -289. SourceGenesys Report

This data shows how important customer services is to your brand and your business. The worst case scenario is when your customer move onto your competition. Many organisations are confused about what customer service actually is. Customer service is so much more than being friendly to your customers. It is about understanding your customers and building a relationship with them—it is about your developing your Brand Promise and then delivering that every single time and from every aspect of your organisation—from website to sales to delivery of the product. It must be ‘on brand’ and there must be an understanding of customer service across the organisation—not just within brand’s marketing department.

…and don’t forget to say “Thank You”!

Honigman suggests there are 10 ways to ensure your customers stay in love with your brand:

  1. Treat your Customers Right—Genuinely Interact
  2. Don’t Come on Too Strong—Respect Your Customers
  3. Always Listen—Hear What Your Customers Are Saying
  4. Continue to Satisfy—Offer Ongoing Support and Specials
  5. Treat a Customer Like a Valued Partner—Communication is Two Way
  6. Build Trust—Alert Customer to Large Scale Changes, Good or Bad
  7. Be Transparent—Honesty is Crucial When it comes to Mistakes
  8. Follow Through on Your Word—Follow Up on Promises
  9. Recognise Responsibility—The Customer is Always Right
  10. Always say “Thank You”—Kindness and Gratitude will Take You Far.

From the list you can see that they ’10 Ways’ are really common sense but clearly the data shows that organisations are not following them. The number of times I have personally experienced a mismatch between the brand’s advertising and the actual delivery of the product or service. The more we create digital platforms the more we need to move closer to the customer and get out there and observe and listen to what they are doing and saying.

So you want to know why customers walk away from your brand? Just ask them. Oh yes…and don’t forget to say “Thank You”!

*Christine Moody is one of Australia’s leading brand strategists and the founder brand management consultancy, Brand Audits. With more than 30 years’ professional experience, Christine has helped a diverse client base of local and international brands, including Gold Coast City Council, Hilton Hotels, and Wrigleys USA, to develop, protect and achieve brand differentiation. Her particular interest is personal brand audits to assist executives realise their full potential.

For more information: chris.moody@brandaudits.com.au or +61 419 888 468.

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