Customer care excellence

Customer care is not always fair

Pre transaction phase

(HIGH FIRST IMPRESSION potential)

Product sale / Service delivery phase

(I.e. Business doing what it does)

(POSSIBLE FIRST IMPRESSION potential)

Post transaction phase
Typical activities Typical activities Typical activities
Marketing /advertising/web promotion etc.

Biding /quoting/ tendering

Recommendations from other delighted clients

Networking /prospecting

Making sales/ providing goods and services on contracts etc.

Operational interactivity

 

Satisfaction follow up /project close outs

Spares/maintenance /service support hotlines


Warranty issues/ snagging/ Complaint handling

New product Information updates/ blogs

Billing and admin

Customers’ service expectations will vary between the phases, hence so will the opportunities for exceeding them.  If a customer expects great things, then exceeding that level will be difficult.
If they have little or no hopes built up then there are high chances of being favourably impactful.

Pre- transaction phase Product sale / Service delivery phase  Post transaction phase
Customer service expectations levels VARIABLE but potentially low unless you come very highly recommended to them VERY HIGH.  You are expected to do your job and give them what was promised VARIABLE.  If your business is stand-alone sales with low spares or service needs, LOW levels may prevail.  If you do offer ongoing support the customer will have the same VERY HIGH expectations, as in their buying phase.
POSITIVE HIGH IMPACT POTENTIAL 

opportunities

Unless they have been told to expect something special, there is a chance, with a good FIRST IMPRESSION, to make a VERY HIGH impact, possibly via slick, easy to use web sites, great pre-sales face to face meetings or brilliant tendering skills LOW. Unless you can blow the customer away the first time you actually work with them, their high expectations of …getting it right first time… mean it will be hard to impress them.  You are going to have to be doing something extra special If follow up support is normal, solving problems /complaints  very well can generate a MODERATE amount of goodwill.  Taking unexpected proactive steps over and above requirements does offer VERY HIGH goodwill opportunities.
HIGH NEGATIVE IMPACT 

likelihood

FIRST IMPRESSIONS can be bad as well as good but unless you do something terrible pre-customer contact should be NEUTRAL VERY HIGH.  Any failure in your basic market offering will drive customers MAD VERY HIGH.  Poorly performing in a primary role then failing to fix any issues will drive customers away, as will  showing any apparent apathy or lack of care

If you are trying to be thought of as displaying excellent customer care, clearly the odds are against
you
 if you just try to do a good basic job in your core activities.  High standards  here is already taken as given.  To stand out you will have to be phenomenal in the transactional phase and / or find some way of treating customers as special before and after they have sampled your core offerings.

Hope this helps you plan how to maximise the goodwill you can build up with your client care efforts..

If you would like some help then contact Keith Wilson at: Pearl Onion Training
T 01467 681404
E keith@pearlonion.co.uk

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