Contrary to some schools of thought, it doesn’t take hundreds of employees or millions of dollars to make clients happy. The secret to mastering an exceptional customer experience (CX), or what we prefer to call it, client experience (CX) seems to mysteriously stump many organizations.
And for years, getting executive buy-in was the most difficult aspect of CX. Now, CX has won a place in the C-suite and has become a crucial component of overall business strategy as it has established credibility and demonstrated its impact. According to Gartner, approximately 90% of organizations today have a Chief Experience Officer (CXO) or a role similar to it.
Businesses of all shapes and sizes are in search of the hidden treasure of the best CX yet they’re all missing a very basic point; great CX is not delivered by a chief or some cool fancy department of WOW. So what’s the secret to delivering an exceptional CX that keeps clients coming back for more, day after day, month after month, year after year? Short answer: It starts with every interaction.
Here are the six simple truths we’ve found effective in building impactful client experiences through every interaction that you can start implementing in your organization, too.
1. Learn and use your clients’ names.
A popular quote by Dale Carnegie states, “Names are the sweetest and most important sound in any language.” It may seem like common sense to use your client's name throughout every interaction, but it can be easy to forget someone’s name, especially when you are speaking to multiple individuals a day. Using the client's name establishes a culture of respect, acknowledgment, and thoughtfulness for the discussion. Make a point to connect with each client on a personal level, and ensure they know your focus is on them by simply using their name.
Smiling helps you to appear open, approachable, and friendly. It shows that you are happy to be interacting with your clients. And any organization can do this, whether working on site or remotely. Researchers at the University of Portsmouth in England discovered that people can "hear" a smile over the phone in a 2008 study. Humans can tell the difference between a smiling and a non-smiling person through differences in sound and tone. It’s that simple, smile more.
3. Exceed expectations.
It’s important to understand what your clients expect from you and exceed those expectations. Now, this could be as simple as taking quick action on a request or issue or sending a birthday card, and as elaborate as offering a large discount, gift, free service, or item. But at the end of the day, make it known to your clients that you are willing to take that extra step to make them happy with the experience you provide. Those extra steps can be the concrete reasons clients return again and again to continue doing business with you.
4. Ask your clients for feedback.
We end each client interaction by asking for feedback. This leaves the door open for improvement. Don’t be afraid or hesitant to do this. As a skilled professional, it is your responsibility to guide your clients away from standard responses and toward a point where they can truly contribute insight and value into what you can do to improve their experience and satisfaction. You may be surprised by what you can learn from your clients, and it’s as simple as asking and listening.
5. It’s more about how you treat your clients than the actual product or service you’re selling.
As human beings, we tend to look for ways to connect with others. This is true in every aspect of our lives from family and friends to where we shop and spend our money. Relationships tend to be the differentiator in business. Consider your favorite restaurant as an example. Your favorite restaurant may include qualities such as knowing your name, remembering your favorite order, providing quick service, and so on. If they're not performing well, you're more likely to justify it by saying things like "they must be having a bad night" or "they must be short-staffed today." Because of your relationship, you’re more willing to give them another chance, the benefit of the doubt proving that it’s more about the connection you have versus the product or service you’re buying.
6. Say thank you.
Think of how you feel when someone thanks you for something you’ve done, whether it’s holding a door open, picking up a paper someone dropped or letting someone into your lane on the highway. These simple acts of kindness connect with people and establish the foundation for building a lasting rapport and relationship with others. Make it a point to say thank you, whenever you can.
Impactful interactions, made simple
These six simple truths if put into action can improve your client’s experience and satisfaction with your business greatly. They are things that should be instilled in your entire organization. And while they are simple truths that apply to every business in existence, the ability to perform them consistently across all operations within your business is not an easy feat. Only when your employees and clients see you walking the talk will the power of these truths deliver the improved results you’re looking for.
Our commitment to an exceptional client service experience
At PrimePay, we strive for an exceptional client service experience by making our clients happy throughout their buying journey with us, with a specific focus on delivering “smile-worthy” experiences every time.
We’re able to make good on these promises by building the kind of caring culture in our organization that we know makes us better, committing to continual improvement, and making sure our clients are at the center of everything we do. We value collaboration with our clients and truly see them as partners.
And just like in the principles of an exceptional client service experience stated above, we know we’re still on this journey. And we’ll keep learning and growing to ensure we’re achieving our client service goals.
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