The Best Customer Experience is Neverending
Never get forgotten with this CX ROADMAP
Being able to deliver an exceptional customer experience is the cornerstone of any successful business. If you’re good at your work, your customers should be walking away from their transaction with a smile on their face. But don’t worry — customers’ smiles don’t have to be their own reward! Happy customers give something important back to you: More business.
Not only are satisfied customers more likely to come back for more, but they’re also more likely to tell their friends all about how easy and pleasant it was to work with you. Between repeat business and referral traffic, a happy customer is more effective for boosting your bottom line than any other avenue of sales and marketing. That’s why any business truly dedicated to success needs to prioritize customer experience above all else.
Create a Strategy
Of course, it’s well known that customer experience is crucial to success, and there are plenty of businesses that prioritize it. So how can you stand out against the competition? The first step, as with many things, is to craft a detailed, actionable plan.
A good customer experience strategy will function as a roadmap that takes you from onboarding a prospect, to in-process, to closing, to post-closing, and beyond. For each of these steps, there are a number of things to consider:
Develop checkpoints throughout the entire process to ensure that your customer feels that they’re being made a priority and kept in the loop. These checkpoints should help you identify when a customer is unhappy, so you can course-correct and bring everything back to center.
Focus on what matters. Contrary to popular belief, a great customer experience isn’t about the money you spend on your customers. Instead, it’s about how you make them feel, and how well you perform your service. It doesn’t take a big financial investment to make happy customers — but it does require an investment of time and energy.
Stay in touch. Nothing will make you lose a customer faster than poor communication. Whether your customers can’t get in touch with you when they need to, or just feel like you’ve forgotten about them, going incommunicado is a surefire way to mess up the customer experience.
Be realistic. Be careful not to overpromise. Instead, set an achievable baseline goal for customer experience, and allow any additional efforts to shine as “going above and beyond” what you’ve promised to deliver. An elaborate plan does you no good if you can’t follow through on it.
Throughout the entire strategy, communication needs to remain your primary goal. People like feeling heard and acknowledged, and nobody likes feeling out-of-the-loop. Any emails, texts, or calls need to feel personal, and any content you deliver needs to be informative, engaging, and readable.
Of course, you’re a busy professional, and you probably don’t have time to keep in touch with every customer as often as they deserve while still getting the rest of your job done. That’s why it’s key to work smarter, not harder, when it comes to communication with your customers. The good news is, there’s a magic bullet: Automated marketing
The more of your marketing and communication that you can automate, the more your customers will see you as consistent and reliable. Automated marketing never takes a day off when you’re sick, or forgets about an important email thanks to a stressful day. Instead, you can ensure that all of your prospects, customers, and past customers are receiving exactly the information they need to feel supported and to get the most out of their relationship with you.
Often the most valuable content you can deliver is content that benefits the reader in some way. We generally think about this in terms of educational and informational content, but this also includes demonstrations of customer appreciation, like parties or gifts, and loyalty programs. These are great ways to tangibly show your customers that their business is important to you, and that you want to give back.
Above all, the key to success with your customer experience plan is making sure that you are able to stay consistent and organized as you follow it. The best tool you can use to ensure that you stick to your strategy is your CRM. The right CRM will make it easy to stay in touch with your customers and show them how much they mean to you — without consuming your workday.
Prioritize Quality Communication
Just as weak communication can be the nail in the coffin of a lost customer or lead, excellent communication can be the trait that cements a strong relationship with a customer. But when it comes to communication, quantity does not equal quality. Consistency on its own isn’t enough to make a great communication strategy.
In the real estate and mortgage industries, it’s particularly important to be accessible to your customers. The service you offer is of the utmost importance to them, and often they’re experiencing a lot of stress and fear over the whole situation. If they can’t get in touch with you to ask questions or get the information they need, your customers or prospects may spook and turn to someone else — someone they have an easier time communicating with.
This means you need to respond to queries promptly, but it also means you need to be available through whatever platform is your customers’ first choice. If they prefer to communicate over email, they need to be able to reach your that way. If they want to talk on the phone, you should be available on the other end of the line.
Communication is key to building trust, which is essential to building ongoing relationships with customers. In order to create that trust, you can’t hide behind the mask of your business. Instead, you need to be genuine in a way that makes your prospects and customers see you as a person. Authenticity and honesty show your contacts that you don’t just care about closing the deal, but you care about delivering the results they’re looking for and helping them reach their desired endpoint. In order to be a trustworthy guide for your customers, you need to strike the right balance between authenticity and professionalism, to demonstrate the right combination of trustworthiness and experience.
Of course, there’s a difference between consistent communication and overwhelming your customers. They need to feel informed about the process, but it’s also important to make sure that any emails or texts you send or calls you make are working for your customers’ best interests, not just yours. Your contacts need to feel that you’re there to help, not to pad your own pockets. Bombarding them with communication that serves your interests and not theirs is a quick way to alienate a customer and destroy any trust that you have built thus far.
Use the Right Technology
That all sounds like a lot to manage, right? A good customer experience strategy isn’t just comprehensive, it’s also attainable. To achieve your strategy, it’s imperative that you have the right tools for the job.
Task management tools are all-important for staying on top of a complex strategy. You need a way to set reminders that will keep you on track and on task.
Follow-up marketing is crucial to ensure that you don’t just win new customers, but you alsokeep them. Automated marketing can keep new prospects on the line and start to develop a stronger, more lasting relationship.
Automatedclosing gifts are a great way to leave your satisfied customers with one last reminder of their good experience with you. Plus, a closing gift will keep you on their mind if later they want to refer a friend or contact you again.
Staying in touch can seem like a full-time job on its own, but a great CRM will do the work for you, so your customers will never feel out of the loop.
It’s key tocheck-in regularly to make sure everything is on track, and so that you can solve problems as they come up. Automated email and text campaigns can do the checking in for you, leaving you free to address any issues they identify.
Every customer wants to feel like they’re the only customer in the world. Unfortunately, it just isn’t possible to give every single person the in-depth relationship they deserve — unless you have the right technology to facilitate it! By automating the recurring elements of your customer experience, you have the time and energy to personalize each experience in meaningful ways, ultimately leading to stronger relationships, happier customers, and more referrals and repeat business.