- Are you looking for a surefire recipe for startup success? Combine a winning business idea with flawless customer service. Click to find out how to do it right in 2019.
By | Shirley Brown
Startup founders always find a way to keep things interesting in the business realm. While their passion for business and trading comes naturally, their innovative ideas and strategies make it even more fascinating to watch them play out their cards. They usually obsess with every product feature or design until they are perfect.
However, this knack for perfection sometimes goes missing in one of the most essential aspects of startup success: customer experience. Providing excellent customer experience is just as important as churning out great products they’ll love. Sure, product development is great, but developing awesome customer experience should also be up there on the list of your priorities as a budding entrepreneur.
Brands like Trader Joes, JetBlue, and Ritz-Carlton are killing it with their customer experience efforts to rake in more revenue than ever. So, why can’t you? Read this post to find out the many ways that you can focus on customer experience and become an instant hit with your target audience.
Ways to boost customer experience for your startup
- Interact with every customer
The early days of a startup are always the hardest. You have a shortage of resources, and you need to micromanage even the simplest of things. But do not forget to reach out to every customer at a personal level even then.
Provide them with your email address and respond to them in a timely manner. If you practice doing this from the early startup days, it will stay with you and your team in the times to come. Do not leave out any customer – respond to everyone. You will gradually realize that their feedback can also be used as the initial stages of research and development you will be needing for your product or services.
- Tell them who you are
This sure sounds arrogant. But signing off emails and tweets with your name and position is actually pretty awesome. Customers feel special and cared for when receiving an email or reply from the co-founder or CEO. And it is always a big deal for them.
Most customers understand that a leader or founder of a business have a lot on their plate. Hence getting an answer from them directly shows that the company cares enough to take time out for their customers. Include your title in email signatures, tweets, and social media comments that you answer. Make your customers feel important, and show that you care for their concerns despite a busy schedule.
- Take care of the recent emails/ tweets at first
Although it seems like you should be sorting through them in the order they arrived, the opposite approach is actually more effective. Here’s why.
We usually imagine waiting to be like when we do the same in physical queues, at ticket counters or drive-throughs. But it’s not the same in the digital world. Customers cannot possibly see how many are there in line ahead of them. So, you need not take the first-in-first-out approach here at all.
Always answer the most recent tweets, emails, calls, and chats first. That way, you can create a special moment of quick response for your brand. This will go a long way in creating a positive brand image as well.
- Keep feedback in single-view platforms from all channels
Customer feedback and customer experience can become a lot simpler when you have the right tools to handle them. Sure, managing emails, tweets, and comments across social media channels can get hectic at times. So make sure you have a unified view of all feedback platforms in one place. Chat, calls, social media mentions, emails – they should all appear at one place.
Make sure your customers can view all the channels through which they can reach you at one place as well. Use modern-day tools like Kampyle, Feedbackify, and InMoment to compile customer feedback in one place. Connect your contact and support email addresses along with all your social media channels. This way, scaling and adding channels will become much easier in the future.
- Make replying to customers a habit
Being responsive is crucial when you are trying to establish a two-way communication process with your customers. It starts with making replying to customers a regular habit. Never keep tweets, comments or emails unanswered. Set aside a time of the day when you only respond to feedback and queries from customers. That way, you can ensure that you are in the loop at all times.
Catch up with those who gave you negative ratings. Get to the bottom of their problem, and promise to resolve the issues. Take a moment to thank those who gave you positive ratings. Ensure they know that they are valued. This way, you will be able to hold on to your customer base while taking care of product development issues as well.
- Offer something more with your CX
Often, the best way of handling disgruntled (or faintly annoyed) customers is to offer a little something that they were not quite expecting. A few airlines handle this just the right way. Are customers tweeting angrily about extended layover hours? Surprise them with free upgrades or access to the business class lounge.
While AI and chatbots are pretty great in their own functionality aspects, nothing beats the old-school human touch that says thoughtfulness like no other. Make sure you are prepared to give away a bit f extra goodies to show customers you care for them. You will have them coming back for more in no time.
Summing it up
Reaching out to customers over issues and solving their problems lies in the heart of becoming successful with your startup. Satisfied customers alone can take your business to another level, and that is just what every startup founder dreams of. Since word of mouth still outruns every other marketing tactic in the game, you would want to be in the good books of your dear customers. Make sure you cash in on those brownie points through excellent customer experience at your end. Go by the tips discussed in this post, and you will be good to go. Good luck!
Shirley Brown owns a digital marketing firm in Adelaide. She is also associated with an education portal as a senior CPM Homework Helper for Maths problems. A part-time graffiti artist, she also likes to take up spray cans from time to time to paint the streets of Adelaide in vibrant colors.