Excellent customer service is an integral part of every great company. Whether you’re running a brick-and-mortar, an e-commerce website, or if you’re a service-based business, ensuring your customers are as happy as they can be should be one of your top priorities, if not the single most important priority. However, providing excellent customer service is easier said than done, and providing a World-Class Customer Experience is even harder to achieve.
If you want your own business to have success, your business model should revolve around your customers’ needs, desires, and, ultimately, ensuring they’re getting the results they’re after. This, however, is more specific within the agency world. The pace is fast, tasks are constantly being juggled, and the stakes are high. So, if you want to be able to pull this off, you’ll need more than just a big smile and a positive attitude.
In this article, I’ll be diving into the seven keys that will help you deliver a world-class customer experience and make your clients feel like a VIP!
Focus on providing an “experience” rather than delivering a “service”
Good customer service is giving the client exactly what they asked for—it’s being reactive. However, providing a great customer experience is being proactive! If you’re just waiting for requests to come through, then all you’re doing is providing a service. What you want to do is provide an experience that your client won’t forget.
If your client hasn’t given you the specifics on what they want to do for their Back-To-School campaign, get ahead of the game and start preparing things on your end—make sure all the right processes are in place, and that your entire team is aware of what’s to come. After that, don’t wait on your client to ask you for statistics on the campaign’s performance, be proactive and make sure the time you need is already blocked off in your calendar so that you can deliver when it’s needed.
Another way to make sure you’re focusing on providing an “experience” instead of a “service” is to always look for improvements. Whether that’s an internal process or a system that involves the client, don’t hesitate to re-evaluate what the current situation is, and brainstorm ideas on how you can make it better. A good example of this are meetings. If you have a recurring meeting with a client, are they always efficient? When it comes to meetings, you want to make sure that the client leaves that meeting feeling productive. Once the meeting is done, make sure there are clear action steps afterwards. This way, both parties are clear on the work being done, and that the account is never in a stand-still mode. If your meetings still aren’t efficient or productive, it’s time to re-think the experience you’re providing!
Be an extension of their business
In order to provide a world-class customer experience, you need to care about your client’s priorities as though they’re your own. When working on their account, you have to do absolutely everything you can to understand their goals, and how you can help them achieve those goals. To do so, you can’t just provide them with what they’ve asked of you—you need to go above and beyond.
If you’re managing a client’s website and they want to re-design one of their landing pages, don’t just provide them with one mockup, provide them with at least two to give them options to choose from. When providing them with a report on how their Black Friday campaign has performed, don’t just give them the numbers—give them a hypothesis or two on why the numbers are what they are, and some clear, out-of-the-box suggestions that can help take their campaign to the next level.
Ultimately, get excited when working on your client’s account, and get to know their business even better than they do!
Ensure all team members are on the same page
More often than not, consistency is the difference between a good and a great company. No matter who the customer is interacting with, they’re receiving the same service and experience as they would with anyone else—time after time. But it’s not always a question of who—it can also be a question of what. Providing a world-class customer experience is making sure everything from A to Z is delivered in an A+ manner. Anytime a customer has an interaction with your brand, it needs to be a world-class experience. This can be anything from navigating your website, having a positive email or phone call interaction, providing a super quick turnaround on a promised deliverable, and of course, ensuring the product or service you’re offering is as advertised.
To achieve this, everyone on your team needs to be on the same page. If there isn’t complete alignment throughout your staff, your business will fail to deliver the experience you’re needing to provide. After all, you’re only ever as good as your weakest link, so make sure everyone is giving it their all to make your client feel like a VIP.
Be available…all the time
One of the top things needed in order to provide a world-class customer experience, is to build trust with your client. One of the best ways to do so is by being available as much as you can. If you say you’re “an extension of their business,” you need to act the part. This will involve rescheduling internal calls, and constantly updating your own to-do list, but you need to be there when the client needs you. If you’re not, then it’s game over. A world-class experience is providing instant gratification. Whether it’s hopping on a last-minute call or answering an URGENT email past working hours, get on it ASAP. Even if you don’t have an answer to their question or request at that exact moment, still acknowledge their message and let them know the ball is rolling.
There’s no doubt that finding additional time in our workday is tough, so make sure that your schedule allows you to handle these timely requests so that you can provide the best experience for your client when they need it the most.
Master difficult conversations
Regardless of how organized and on top of things you are, difficult conversations are inevitable. However, they’re not necessarily a bad thing. The ability to bring up challenges and issues is a skill, and, ultimately, is a must. If you want to provide a world-class customer experience, you have to be able to tell your client the reality of a bad situation. Now, there’s definitely a right way and a wrong way to do this!
When briefing a client on an issue at hand, don’t go in on a whim—come prepared with a solution. Anticipate additional concerns the client may have with this news, and have some answers ready. However, make sure you’re still actively listening, and adapting your answers based on your client’s concerns. All and all, if you need to tell your client some unfortunate news, don’t just drop it as though it’s nothing—have empathy for the situation, and be ready to explain the next actions that you and your team are ready to take moving forward.
Provide a personalized experience
Getting to know someone on a more personal level will elevate any relationship. This is especially true in business. At the end of the day, work isn’t everything, and your clients have lives outside of the professional setting where you have developed your relationship. If you get to know your client on a more personal level, it’s only going to help improve that working relationship. To do so, never rush into the business at hand. When you’re with your client, ask them how their week is going, or what they did, or plan on doing on the weekend. And the next time you see them, follow up on that!
If you want to provide a world-class customer experience, show your clients that you not only care about their business but that you care about them personally.
Achieve the results your client wants
Great results are never easy to achieve, and they definitely don’t just appear overnight. But when it comes down to it all, your clients hired you to do exactly that—achieve excellent results. If you don’t, everything I’ve mentioned in this article won’t matter too much, unfortunately. However, if you do execute everything I’ve mentioned in this article, it will definitely go a long way in helping you get there!
If you’re organized, on the ball, have the passion, and care for your client’s business as if it’s your own, then everything and everyone involved will be in the right position to make sure the great results are, in fact, achieved.
All and all, providing a world-class customer experience isn’t the same as flicking on a switch. You have to evaluate every aspect of your own business and identify what elements of it can be improved so that your client is maximizing their experience with you.
If you’re a business looking to improve your digital marketing, reach out to us at seoplus+ and ask about our VIP Services to guarantee you receive a world-class customer experience when achieving your great results!