In the past year, customer relationship management on social media sites, such as Twitter, has dominated the conversation around customer service. However, social media is just as vital for the customer experience as it is for managing the customer relationship. A customer relationship begins with the way you treat them during the sales process.
Forbes Magazine, in an article about how customer experience should meet the experience promised by the marketer, explains customer experience as, “how customers perceive their interactions with your company.” It’s one thing to manage customer relationships in relation to tracking prospects’ online and offline behavior, but monitoring their experiences with your company as you make a sale requires a whole other set of tools.
The simplest starting point to any positive customer experience is listening to the prospect. Customer intelligence can help you understand who they are, what they want and how your products or services can help them. If you immediately go into automatic mode each time a new customer comes along, you’ll lose them. Listen attentively and improvise your sales pitch based on their needs.
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If you promise to do something during a sales meeting, do it. Keep track of the interactions you have with prospects so you make note of what you promise in your CRM. Plenty of apps also exist for mobile devices or home computer systems that offer simple ways to create prospect profiles. Make sure to update each profile as information changes and log it into an easy-to-navigate database system or software.The last thing you want to do is forget to follow up on an issue a prospect brought to you.
Match the marketing with the experience
If your company promises a specific experience, then make sure you’re doing everything you can as a sales representative to guarantee your prospect receives that experience. Forbes listed United Airlines as an example of a company not meeting the customer experience promised to potential flyers. The company ran a series of ads promising those who flew on the airline would be treated as kings and queens, but United had difficulty living up to that promise.
Forbes wrote: “United does itself a disservice by setting the bar so unattainably high; the gap that customers perceive between promise and reality has become a deep chasm.”
Remember why the customer experience matters
When you find yourself tired of going through the same old pitch, remind yourself that a positive customer experience can equal an opportunity for renewal business, and renewal business always equals more money earned in the long run.