Many companies listen to 100% of customer interactions and constantly adapt their messages and operations to meet growing customer needs and changing behaviors. However, the reality is that many brands don’t listen to their customers, and this is reflected in their ads, customer service interactions, and even the products themselves. Any reputable business strives to listen to its customers, if possible, to all of its customers because this is how you will know what you need to change in your product or service and what deficiencies need to be addressed.
The downside is that it’s essential to know which ones represent your customer base as a whole and which ones have a unique need that doesn’t apply to everyone else. Unless you’re asking for feedback from a large number of customers, you usually only get the opinion of a select few. If you rely too heavily on this skewed feedback, you may end up listening to the loudest and angriest clients, but not necessarily the most helpful.
There is nothing wrong with listening to your users in any of these situations. However, please do not listen to or read user explanations of what they are doing or how they did it. If you listen to them, you can start to improve the experience for all of your customers, and, as a bonus, you will be perceived as a friendly business owner. On the other hand, suppose you don’t listen to your customers. In that case, your competitors will take advantage of this valuable insight and reach out to your audience. Loyalty is nearly completely dead in this world of zero to low switching costs.
Your client will poke holes in your current product or service and tell you how to improve based on what they want or need. Your challenge is to find the best way to handle what your customers say they want. Prioritizing your customers and their feedback will help you gain more insight to help you meet their expectations in the short and long term. Identify customer testimonials that, while solid and persistent, are not representative of your target user, will focus attention on your product and save thousands of hours.
Listening to your customers is listening to their concerns and getting in touch with them. They are your best source of real-time feedback, will guide your business and marketing decisions and strategies, and of course, can provide the best customer experience. Measure their satisfaction. Listening to your customers is a great way to gather enough critical information for your business.
If you listen to customers, you can find out unique details about your products, services, and your business in general. And customer testimonials are one of the best ways to collect company-specific data that allows you to understand what your customers think about the product or service you offer. For most businesses, customer feedback is the company’s greatest asset. Take any marketing or business guide, and I guarantee that within five minutes, you will read that the customer is always right, that two-way conversation is a healthy conversation, and that companies should do more to listen to their customers’ opinions.
When a company asks its customers why they buy a product, how many people will look at it honestly and say “because of the smell in the store” or “because of the classical music being played.” Simply put, the fastest way to fall into the commoditization trap is to ask customers what they want.
The level of governance that existed in your customers’ business that understood both processes and the need for business results no longer exists. I am not saying that you should go to your client/prospect and tell them what they need and how to do their job.
You should listen as much as possible because it allows you to tailor your value proposition to their unique needs. This includes paying close attention to their needs and understanding how you can help them achieve their goals. In addition, they need to have emotional intelligence and determine how customers react to different reactions at different times.
Rather than simply asking consumers what they want, market researchers should track their customers’ behavior in the environment in which the purchase is made. Customer research and brand reputation are fundamental when entering new markets where you don’t know what your potential audience expects.
Go beyond a basic understanding of our customers: who they are, what are they are looking for, and what they expect from you. Tools like design thinking can provide a deeper set of information about your prospects and customers’ fundamental wants, needs, and motivations.
Technology can be a driver, giving you the ability to not only listen to your customers, but more importantly, be a listener providing actionable insights to drive your overall message, strategy, and customer service.
To deliver a truly remarkable experience, you must put customers first. Your job is to design the best product for your users, not just the one they ask for.