If you haven’t heard the term that the customer is always right, then you must be hiding under a rock.  After working in the industry for so many years though, I can tell you that the customer isn’t always right.  There are sometimes when you might not be able to give a customer exactly what they are looking for.  In such a circumstance, how do you ensure customer satisfaction?

Treat Every Customer Like A King

Every customer, no matter how big their business is, should be treated like your most valuable client.  This helps throughout the process for them to feel like they are getting what they need, even if they aren’t getting what they want.  Just the fact that you are treating them so well makes them feel appreciated.  Just because we are in the IT/IS world does not mean that we are not customer service oriented.

Consider Having A Chief Customer Officer

There are a lot of titles that are thrown around in the modern world, CEO, CFO, CMO, COO, and so on.  With all of these titles do you real need another one?  The answer is, you probably do.  A Chief Customer Officer is someone who helps to instill the delivery of a positive customer experience from every member of your business.  They do this by working with leadership and down to develop strategies, policies, and skills to help every person deliver the best customer service.

Discuss Customer Experience In High Level Meetings

A lot of businesses don’t see it necessary for the CEO and other high-level members to know what customers are thinking about their business.  This isn’t acceptable.  I, just like everyone reading this, should know that a company is nothing without its customers.  That means that if there are significant issues or even a trend of negative reviews, this should be discussed in the board room and other high-level meetings.

You don’t have to discuss individual cases and you don’t have to decide on harsh punishments for bad interactions (you probably shouldn’t anyways), but you should come up with a short way for every regular meeting to address this.  Come up with a quick segment in which someone such as the Chief Customer Officer, gives a briefing on the current satisfaction ratings, any severely bad incidents, and especially any very positive customer experiences.

Remember A Customer Can Judge By Just One Experience

It is important to remember that a customer can judge your company by just one experience that they receive, both bad and good.  A bad experience can kill a business relationship right away, that is fairly obvious.  However, an experience in which a customer gets the red carpet and more could set your company up for a future bad experience too.

If a customer receives a red-carpet treatment once, they are going to be expected to receive that every time.  While it is important to develop the feeling of being a king in a customer, there should be a bar set for team members to regularly deliver this kind of service.  This helps to meet the expectation level that you set on your first encounter.

Differentiate Your Value

Every business needs a way to differentiate their value.  From treating every customer like they are family to delivering above and beyond every time.  There are a wide variety of ways that you can stand it.  Finding ways to have your customer experience stand out will bring people back every time.

Customer experience isn’t just what makes one sale, it is what develops retention in your customers and customer loyalty.  It is also the best way to get companies to refer you out to others.  I thoroughly believe that customers are kings and they are why every business I have worked for has succeeded.  Ensure to foster a culture in your business where every customer feels appreciated and feels that they get what they need.

Todd Ringleman

Todd Ringleman

Founder, CEO at RAY • ALLEN INC
Todd Ringleman is Founder and CEO of RAY • ALLEN INC. Under Todd’s leadership, RAY • ALLEN INC has grown from a disruptive idea into a leading partner in the IT Asset Management and Recurring Revenue market.
Todd Ringleman