Updated: Oct 25, 2019
The customer is always right. That’s a truism of customer service, but it’s just as important when planning for success.
One of the main reasons start-ups fail is because they fail to focus on the customer. But you’re not going to make that mistake!
Why You Should Focus on What Customers Want/Need
Your customers are the life’s blood of your business. If they’re not happy, your business will fail. It’s that simple. We’ve already talked about market research and testing. Even after you’ve tested everything, though, you still need to focus on your customers.
It doesn’t matter what critics of your company and products say. If your customers are happy and satisfied, you’ll make money.
Think about James Carville’s famous sign during Bill Clinton’s presidential campaign. It read, “It’s the economy, stupid.” It was a reminder that the campaign’s voters – its customers – were worried about the economy. Keeping their focus on the community helped make the campaign a winning one.
Creating a Great Start-to-Finish Experience
A customer’s experience with you starts when they first learn about your company or product and continues for as long as they use your product.
When you think about the customer experience, think through every step of the experience. Offer stellar content, an easy buying process, and excellent support.
Customers who’ve received top-notch support remember it. They’ll mention it to their friends.
What’s the secret to attracting customers? VALUE. Before anybody spends their money on your product, they’re going to want to know that it’ll deliver on its promises. You can make them feel better about that by offering clear value to them even before they buy.
That means creating and delivering interesting, informative, relevant, and actionable content that’ll help you engage their attention.
Delivering value triggers a mental glitch called Reciprocity. When you give customer something for free – even if it’s information – they’re more likely to feel obligated to buy from you.
Of course, value must come from your product as well. It includes the quality of the product, its usefulness, its longevity, and its price.
Becoming an Authority
People look up to authority figures. You can prove your authority by doing what we just talked about – delivering value to your customers. But authority is more than that. It’s about showing that you’re a reliable and knowledgeable source of information. On social media, it means delivering original content that’s informative and actionable. It may also mean curating content from industry publications and authorities and sharing it with your own take on the topic.
One way to establish yourself as an authority is to offer a lead magnet to grow your list. A lead magnet can be a short eBook, a tip sheet, a template, or anything else that demonstrates your knowledge.
Customer support starts when a customer first visits your website. You should think about what kind of support your customers need and how you’ll deliver it.
In the old days, support was mostly in person or on the phone. Today, you may want to think about:
Email support n Chat support
Self-service options n FAQ
Social media support
You’ll need to test various options to figure out what’ll work for your audience. Remember that a lot of companies are merging social media with support and consider doing the same.