On the first day at business school, I heard the statement ‘the customer’s perception is your reality’. Immediately, a stream of thoughts crossed my mind. Any business or service must attract customers through sales and marketing campaigns, turning them into brand loyalists.
For instance, restaurants, today, have incited a frenzy of customers because of the hugely popular Julie and Julia, Masterchef and Cooked. These successful businesses build their brands by not just meeting customer expectations but surpassing them.
For me, the first few minutes in a restaurant make or break the expectation.
Whenever I sit in a crowded restaurant, it always seems like a herculean task to get the attention of a waiter. Even though the food may compensate for it, I am still left disappointed. It’s because I expect service to be the part of the overall experience.
On the contrary, when the waiter steps up to the plate and offers a great experience, it instills a sense of pleasure in me, giving me another reason to visit. He is not just an employee of the brand, he is their advocate. And I am not just a customer. I am a brand ambassador.
There are two perspectives through which this can be interpreted.
From the customer’s mind
A customer has expectations of the business at the start of any interaction. These are based on past experience. With the rise in customer expectations, the social gap has tremendously reduced. This has been helping brands connect with their customers. Thus creating a need for personalized interactions through various touch points.
It is at this point that businesses must re-learn what the Bill Gates, the founder of Microsoft had said. “Your most unhappy customers are your greatest source of learning”, and this is how better experience can be studied, tested and provided.
From the business’ drawing board
In every interaction, irrespective of the channel, there lies an unconscious but defined objective – to keep the customer happy. But how often are customers satisfied with the experience?
Despite technology playing a key role in driving proactive customer experience, businesses still deal with unfinished conversations and unsolved problems that ultimately make customers unhappy.
Like Tony Hsieh (CEO – Zappos) said, “Customer service shouldn’t just be a department; it should be the entire company”.
Given that I am fairly new to the domain, it has left me with many questions. And I leave you with one.
What do customers perceive to be ‘happiness’?
Roshini is a marketing professional at Servion Global Solutions. She creates powerful content and the visual elements that go along with it. She goes by the Brene Brown quote “Creativity is the way I share my soul with the world”.
Follow Roshini on Twitter @rosh3006
Connect on LinkedIn.
Publish Date: May 3, 2016 5:00 AM
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Call Center Studio
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