Good listening is a helpful skill that creates a sizable amount of confidence and trust between you and your clients. 86% of your customers are willing to spend more to continue enjoying an outstanding customer experience. Often customers have high expectations of the businesses they choose to hire or buy from. It takes one instance of missed expectations to make clients change providers for what they consider to be a better opportunity. To avoid such, it is good to have some practical customer retention strategies in place.
In turn, these customers become loyal to your brand. As a result, you might even spread the word among their relations, enhancing your brand awareness. According to Nielsen, 92% of customers trust family and friends’ recommendations more than any other kind of advertisement they may come across for a service or product.
Fortunately it’s cheaper to maintain existing clients than acquiring new ones. One strategy that works well with this is by carefully listening to your customers.
4 Reasons Why You Must Listen to Your Customers
On top of increasing customer spending and brand awareness, there are other benefits you can reap from listening to your customers. Here are four:
1. Grows Customer Retention
When you get to know your customers well, you can adjust your communication and selling style to match how they love to be approached. This, as a result, increases the probability that they will keep working with you. And the only way to improve this relationship of understanding and trust is by carefully listening to them.
2. Improves Customers’ Loyalty
Irrespective of how safe your service or product is, it’s not safe from churn. A single poor interaction with your clients can cause most of your customer base to churn. This gives you very minimal freedom when it comes to customer service. You should, therefore, always ensure that your customers remain happy and, in turn, loyal to your business. Listening to them is the most excellent way to keep pace with their demand and fulfill their long-term and short-term expectations.
3. Gets You Data and Feedback
Customer feedback is one of the most efficient tools you have to heighten customer retention and minimize churn rates. Through this feedback, you can identify the good, the ugly, and the bad, as well as identify opportunities to establish a better customer experience. In addition to listening and being able to manage complaints and problems, taking the feedback and sharing them with your other customers and employees can be a great way of marketing your business.
4. Customers Are the Best Testers
Even in the case where you have carried out various rigorous tests, your customers may find increasingly more creative means to find loopholes or break your products. In a way, your customers might the best beta testers. If you learn to listen to your customers, you may learn surprising details about your services, products, and business overall, which gives you a hint on where you should modify.
5 Tips on How to Efficiently Listen to Your Customers
You can learn so much from your customers, but only if you pay attention to what they say to you. In addition to strengthening your understanding, attentively listen to your clients creates a better impression which in the long run leads to active improvements for your organization. Here are five ways on how to upgrade your customer-listening skills:
1. Allow The Customer to Speak
You can’t possibly be able to listen to another person while you’re speaking. So to listen well, you or your team should remain silent until the client has finished explaining their issue. Even if you already know the solution to their problem, interrupting them paints a bad picture by making you look impatient. It is important that you keenly listen to them with the intent of understanding other than responding for them to air out their opinions freely.
2. Rephrase Their Content
Rephrasing or paraphrasing all of what the customer has said while putting more emphasis on one part of it gets the customer to give you more information. It also allows them to make a clarification on the area you might not have grasped their idea well so that you both are walking on the same frequency. Fascinatingly, any additional information you get might be the distinction between making a sale or not.
3. Avoid Arguing at All Costs
As a good listener, you should be there to find out what the customer thinks and where they are coming from. If the customer wants to know your thought, he or she will ask. Otherwise, it’s an excellent idea to remain silent, most especially if the customer is venting. Silence gives you enough time to think through what the customer is trying to pass across so that you don’t miss anything.
4. Engage with Your Clients On Their Preferred Channels
The primary goal of customer service is to make customers more contented with your business. Part of that is communicating with them on channels that they fancy to work on. This requires you or your team to have a deep understanding of your customer base. Additionally, this gives out an opportunity for customer service to align well with marketing.
Assessing your customer personas and identifying your clients is very crucial. For instance, if your organization targets a millennial audience, you may find that social media is their most preferred communication channel. Connecting with them on the channel they are using will help reduce friction in the customer’s experience.
5. Avoid Distractions
Any time you or your team are giving your customers and audience, ensure that you’re in a place where there are minimal distractions so that you can entirely focus on what they are saying. Communication is always best when you’re in a calm, relaxed atmosphere, and creating such an environment to hear them out speaks so well of your business.
In a nutshell, when you take time to listen to your customers, you get to learn what they want, how to sell to them, and how your offering can benefit them. In turn, they get hooked to this exceptional customer experience which extensively boosts your customer retention as they will keep coming for more.
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