Why you shouldn’t stop listening to your customers

Stop listening to your customers at your peril. I want to tell you two quick stories in complete contrast, in contradiction of each other.

I had a bad customer experience yesterday from somebody that I spend money with. They are a service provider. I won’t go into too much detail because I wouldn’t want to compromise anybody. But it’s fair to say that the level of service that I experienced yesterday and the lack of apology, lack of a desire to resolve the problem or even acknowledge that they’ve created a problem, really left a bitter taste in my mouth.

It’s not only going to result in me voting with my feet and spending my money elsewhere, but a lot of other people around me that are witnessing the same level of apathy, dis-interest and just general lack of customer care and consideration are going to do the same.

I just I don’t get it, in an environment where consumers have got so much choice, I just don’t get why you would not care about your customers or stop listening to customers who have repeatedly given feedback.

Now year ago, a customer of mine sent a net promoter score out to his customers ahead of a conference and his net promoter score was sub 30%. He was pragmatic about it, he knew why that was the result he got and we put a very clear action plan in place for him to significantly improve his net promoter score over that next 12 months.

He shared with me the results yesterday and it’s now in excess of 65%. That’s a fantastic result, it’s more than doubled his net promoter score. It’s a fantastic achievement in just a year, and certainly more than we had planned and hoped for.

The main reason is that a year ago, when he got that feedback, he listened to each and every problem. He communicated with each of those customers and he regularly communicates to them about what he’s doing to resolve each of their issues and that’s resulted in a significant improvement in that score this year.

He listened to his customers and not only has he retained that business, he’s increased that business and he’s got better loyalty from those customers because he’s acted.

So, stop listening to customers at your peril. If you start listening, start acting. You’re going to retain your business and increase your business with those customers.

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