Customers are people. And if there’s one thing you know about people, it’s that they like to feel special. The more special you can make your customers feel, the more likely it is that they’ll reward you with their loyalty. It’s a simple idea, but most companies are notoriously poor at executing on it. Your business can be the exception.
5 Ways to Make Customers Feel Special
A customer feels special when they’re made to feel valued. The easiest way to do this is to listen to what they want and then integrate these insights into your sales, marketing, and product innovation. Here are some more specific ways to accomplish this:
- Develop Customer Personas
It’s hard to make a customer feel special if you don’t know who they are and what makes them tick. So before you do anything else, it’s important that you begin by developing very rich customer personas. The information for these personas can be gleaned from a variety of sources, including your website analytics, social media, and even past one-on-one interactions.
- Conduct CSAT Surveys
It’s helpful to get a baseline understanding of how customers feel about your business before making any major changes. And we recommend beginning with a customer satisfaction (CSAT) survey.
A CSAT survey is a simple survey that you send out to your customers asking them how satisfied they are with your brand on a scale of one (very dissatisfied) to five (very satisfied). Based on what customers say, you can identify areas for improvement.
The key to a successful CSAT survey is to begin with a simple rating scale and then allow for detailed feedback. In other words, you want to reduce friction on the front end, while allowing customers to write in more specific answers after their initial answer has been recorded.
- Provide Fast Customer Service
Take off your “business cap” for a moment and view things from the perspective of the customer. Recall a time when you were extremely frustrated with a product or service. But then you called the customer service number and they answered right away. Not only did they pick up the phone on the first ring, but they were eager to help solve your problem. How did it make you feel?
Thanks to lousy businesses, customers have been pre-programmed to expect bad customer service. So when they actually get fast and responsive service, it makes them feel special. They go from downtrodden to delighted in a matter of moments. And here’s the good news: It doesn’t actually require much additional work to provide fast and responsive customer service.
Fast customer service starts with hiring the right people, streamlining your processes, and avoiding unnecessary information gathering. In other words, don’t send a customer through a maze of automated response systems and then ask them 10 questions before finally giving answers. Instead, empower your customer service reps to act autonomously by preparing them in advance with the information they need to provide exceptional service.
- Reward Loyalty
Customers have more choices than ever before. If you don’t make them feel special for choosing you, they’ll simply move on to your closest competitor. No matter how small it may seem, rewarding loyal customers can yield significant benefits. Here are a few suggestions you can try.
- Deliver Personalized Communications
Customers can spot mass mailers and impersonal content from a mile away. Make customers feel more special by personalizing your communications in very small ways. This can look like using a customer’s name in an email subject line, sending a handwritten note on their birthday, or donating a percentage of each sale to charities that your customers support.
Turn Consumers Into Advocates
When customers feel special, the entire relationship changes. They go from being consumers (who simply exchange money for products) to advocates (who proactively vouch for your brand and refer other customers to you).
A concerted effort to make customers feel special will lead to higher customer retention and lower churn. You’ll even see significantly lower customer acquisition costs as a result of increased referrals and organic visibility. It’s truly a game-changer.
As you think about the hard work that goes into making your customers feel valued, consider the long-term benefits. Yes, it can be expensive on the front end, but the long-term ROI can’t be ignored. It’s a worthwhile investment, no matter which way you slice it!