Premium Service, Without the Premium Price
To date, as best we can tell, no customer of any organization in any industry has complained about being treated too well. Whether it’s called concierge service or the white glove treatment, all the recipients know is that what they received was beyond the norm, it was delivered on a consistent basis, and it did not cost extra. This type of service, typically associated with luxury goods, is filtering across the general marketplace with an emphasis on the customer experience.
The ‘experience’ speaks to all contact that people have with a product or service, from discovery to purchase to after-care and beyond. It is something we are attuned to daily as a BPO handling customer service for companies in a wide array of industries. Our role is to be ambassadors of the brands who entrust us with customer care, essentially to provide the level of responsiveness and effectiveness that reinforces the consumer’s original buying decision.
People Hate Being Sold But They Love to Buy
Consumers don’t simply purchase things; they buy solutions to problems, they buy for personal gratification, and they buy to make others happy. Each purchase decision represents an investment, financial in each case, but often an emotional investment, too. Paying attention to the entire experience is a pro-active means of connecting the various touchpoints between employee and consumer, with the goal of creating memorable moments.
In the BPO environment, CSAT (customer satisfaction) scores are a rolling scorecard of an organization’s ability to deliver on the brand promise. However, a little perspective to keep in mind: if the average CSAT score is 93% – which is a very desirable figure – it also means that 7% of customers were not satisfied. Which group is more likely to share its experience with others?
Numbers Behind the Numbers
You’ve likely heard of The Pareto Principle or the 80/20 rule; it applies here in numerous ways:
- Often, 20% of the customers account for 80% of a company’s business
- On a personal level, 20% of your actions account for 80% of your results
- The one or two key goals are worth more than other eight or nine
In terms of the experience, however, there is also a converse effect:
- The 7% of dissatisfied customers account for a great deal more than 7% of supervisors’ attention. It’s not the preferred means of time management but making that group whole again is vital for two reasons: 1) failure to do so creates an organization’s most vocal critics and 2) success in doing so can often make those customers into your champions.
Keep Raising the Bar
A 100% CSAT is likely beyond reach; perfection is a tough standard to meet. But treating each interaction as the most vital of the day dramatically reduces the number of unhappy customers. Meeting expectations is the baseline; exceeding them is the goal and this results in experiences that customers want to share with others, experiences that can turn into third-party referrals.
White glove service is less complicated than it sounds: do what you say, treat customers as you would expect to be treated, be empathetic when necessary, and follow up as required. The evolution of customer expectations – and of the customer experience being a topic of discussion – should mean that the internal bar is always being raised.