Customers are smart, they recognize pretty quickly if the messages you and your company are sending match up with reality.
You say you are customer focused but then you communicate poorly, deliver a product that doesn’t work and then I can’t get hold of you when I need a solution.
Unfortunately this is still a common refrain for many customers. This lowers customer expectations so much that companies that just get it right really stand out. Wow! you did what you said you would and it solved my problem……what a great experience!
Virgin is a company that really recognizes how to manage expectations. This allows them not only to do what they said they would do but go the extra mile and surprise customers. This approach to exceeding customer expectations in turn creates more value and leaves their competition in the dust.
Here is Sir Richard Branson discussing how Virgin delivers on this approach:
“Doing things better doesn’t have to cost more – all it takes is a little creativity and attention to hiring, training and management…… rather than providing rules or scripts, you should ask them [employees] to treat the customer as they themselves would like to be treated – which is surely the highest standard”
Even if your strategy is not to focus on customer service as a differentiator ensuring your actions align with your words is crucial.
Ryanair don’t pretent to promise an outstanding customer experience, in fact in many ways it appears they go out of their way to treat customers poorly. They do however deliver on their fundamental promise “fly cheaper”.
The real problems come when companies over promise and under deliver. Do this consistently and customer trust erodes quickly.
Are your actions aligned with your promises?