The Superheroes of Customer Delight – Part 3

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Michael Buenaventura

August 02, 2016

Part III: The Superhero Power Set

In the previous two parts, we first defined what superheroes are, how Customer Delight (CD) through their Customer Experiences (CX) drives them to work on your organization’s behalf, showed how CD is distinguished from ordinary Customer Satisfaction, and demonstrated the tremendous impact that they can have for businesses.

Now let’s explore the superhero power set to better understand the scope of his or her reach and how to find superheroes of your very own to help set you apart from the ever encroaching competition on your well-earned territory.

Every fictional superhero featured in comic books, TV and film possess a “power set” that gives them the ability to protect the world ranging from super intelligence, to flight, to super strength and everything in between.

Guess what? Business superheroes have power sets too!

The AMA-WOMMA study revealed that its respondents had many objectives for utilizing word-of-mouth/social media. The top-10 were:

  1. Brand Awareness (84%)
  2. Brand Equity/Perception (73%)
  3. To Drive Engagement (69%)
  4. Recommendations & Word-of-Mouth (65%)
  5. Corporate Reputation (57%)
  6. Competitive Advantage (54%)
  7. Direct Sales (43%)
  8. Insights & Research (31%)
  9. To Change Brand Image (28%), and
  10. To Reduce Costs (11%) Your businesses’ superheroes – when properly delighted – are capable of having a positive impact on each of these objectives… and so much more. They are superheroes after all! Talk about an impressive power set!

Your businesses’ superheroes – when properly delighted – are capable of having a positive impact on each of these objectives… and more. They are superheroes after all! Talk about an impressive power set!

Cultivating Superheroes

Superhero power sets are all well and good, but it’s not as if organizations can just light up the Bat Signal as bait to lure Batman-level customers in to save the day.

So what can businesses – small and large – do to help ensure that an army of superheroes will come out and fight for it? The possibilities are almost limitless, but here are five tactics for you to consider:

  1. High-Quality Customer Service: Over the course of a busy day, it’s sometimes exceedingly difficult to offer, let alone deliver, high-quality customer service every moment of the business day. Meetings run late, employees are overworked, personal lives are distracting and/or you may be working with a difficult client that is hard to please. But regardless of the reason for doing otherwise, businesses should be focused on delivering 100% satisfaction, 100% of the time.There simply isn’t any other rational choice.ModernComment reports that 40% of customers say, “Improved interaction with service employees is the key driver for spending more money”! These customers have effectively acknowledged that they are in “spend mode”. Further, “86% of consumers quit doing business with a company because of a bad customer service experience”. Do you really want to lose a revenue stream to a competitor, because of sub-par service?The only correct answer is, “NO!”
  1. Employee Training: The Great Recession of 2008 – and the very long recovery since that time – has caused businesses to tighten its budgets more than ever before. These cutbacks have often been to the detriment to employee training. This lack of training is contributing to poor CX… and not reaching the Customer Delight stage.Businesses that invest in continual training over the long-run for its employees stand to benefit from the power of superheroes, because quite simply, “73% of customers cited incompetence as the primary reason” that they give up on a brand (ModernComment).That 1-hour Lunch & Learn, led by a busy Chief Marketing Officer, doesn’t seem like such a waste of time now does it? 
  1. Loyalty Programs: One particularly impactful key driver in successful organizations is the ability to retain and grow existing customers over the long-run. As stated earlier, losing customers to competitors has a negative effect on marketing ROI. It is absolutely critical to return loyalty to those consumers that are the most loyal to us.Loyalty programs run the gamut in terms of rewards, however, one common factor that is shared is an appreciation for current consumers.On the low-end, consider a frozen yogurt shop that offers a free yogurt for every 10 that are purchased at full price. Such a program is easily implemented – all that is needed is a stack of loyalty cards and a stamp to mark each purchase. A minimal investment allows even the tiniest of businesses to position themselves stronger in the market to drive repeat business!On the larger scale, as Business Insider notes, Target’s REDCard “combines loyalty and a valuable discount program – 5% at the point of sale”.
  1. Ask for Testimonials: com says that businesses should turn “happy customers into an unpaid PR force. Remember: delighted customers talk about your brand and products. They ARE an unpaid sales force; the only thing you control is whether your “unpaid sales force” is ON brand… or off brand!Try this: After successfully delivering your products or services, invite the customer to give you a testimonial. Don’t assume that they will. Further, make it easy for them to do so.Within seven days of servicing a customer, try sending them a text message that automatically asks for a referral. Solicit honest feedback. Ask what the experience was like, and be sure to include a link to your website, business Yelp, Facebook, LinkedIn or other social media site. Ask for the testimonial.Simple, yet powerfully effective!
  1. Target Influencers: Now that the Age of Social Media is in full swing, delighted influencers have the sort of scope that would have been impossible to even fathom in decades past. Target them!In an article for Forbes.com, Paul Jankowski writes, “Make sure you are speaking to leaders and influencers in your space. These can be journalists, public figures, bloggers, or even trendsetting fans…It is a good idea to make a target list of influencers that appeal to your key demographic and make sure that they know about what you do. This does not mean badger them with calls and emails-but rather take the time to learn about them and why they are influential, then open up a dialogue by engaging with their content in ways that are relevant to your brand.”This is fantastic advice that can be accomplished by any and all businesses – large or small!

As you can see, delighted superheroes are powerful and impactful consumers who have the power to revolutionize your organization. Let them fight for you today!

CITATIONS:

  1. http://www.lithium.com/pdfs/infographic/lithium_nine_big_reasons_for_serious_WOMM.pdf
  2. https://moderncomment.com/customer-feedback-stats
  3. http://www.inc.com/nicole-carter/jonah-berger-marketing-word-of-mouth.html
  4. http://www.forbes.com/sites/onmarketing/2013/05/08/building-loyalty-the-lady-gaga-way-focus-on-1-of-your-customers/
  5. http://www.businessinsider.com/effective-loyalty-programs-2014-3
  6. http://www.inc.com/theupsstore/generating-word-of-mouth-wow.html
  7. http://www.forbes.com/sites/pauljankowski/2013/03/13/4-tactics-to-build-your-word-of-mouth/