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The B2B Sales Rep.: 3 Ways to Increase Customer Loyalty

Sales Rep.

With all the talk of social media and its importance in marketing and lead development, sometimes the importance and value of the sales representative in the B-to-B environment are overlooked. This concept was reinforced to me this week while working on a project for a client.

We conduct product delivery surveys for this client, and these surveys are designed to measure customer satisfaction with the product and their sales process. Our client, like many, has a network of dealers that sell and support their products to the end-user. They wanted to know which of the questions on the survey were most strongly correlated with overall satisfaction and likelihood to recommend.

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Rethinking Risk in Customer Experience Improvement

Customer Experience Improvement

This summer, we finished rewriting a major part of our customer portal software to make it easier to use.

It took a lot of time, money, nights and weekends, and we ran into our fair share of bugs and headaches along the way.

After we had launched the update, I thought “rewrites aren’t for the risk averse!”

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The State of Customer Service – A View from the Road

Customer Service from the Road

When you are out and about or even on vacation, do you observe the customer service you receive? What are your thoughts about the customer you receive every day?

I just spent the last seven weeks traveling in an RV with my wife visiting clients and prospects. Given what we do as a firm, I always pay attention to customer service I receive most anywhere. As we drove through the upper Midwest, I kept my eyes and ears open.  Here are some of my observations:

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How to Stop Playing Customer Service Whack-a-Mole

Customer Service

Whack-a-Mole is hilariously fun at first, yet it quickly becomes tedious and repetitive.  Just imagine having to play it for a living.  If you manage a customer facing team or function, that’s what you may feel you’re doing when dealing with customer service issues.  You run from one problem to the next, stopping just long enough to apologize or extend a goodwill credit before dashing to the next fire.

If you’d like to stop playing customer service whack-a-mole, consider using “continuous improvement,” a management method made common by Toyota and other manufacturing companies to help identify, fix, and prevent production errors.  Continuous improvement works on customer issues, too.

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Effortless Customer Experiences Aren’t Possible Without This Key Ingredient

Effortless customer experiences help trust

Imagine for a moment you run a package delivery business.  Now picture what the most effortless customer experience might look like.

I’m willing to guess your vision includes a simple, mobile friendly online system for customers to schedule pickup, track delivery, and pay.  Just push a button.  Consider it done.

I’m also willing to guess your vision doesn’t include the customer inspecting every inch of your delivery van, then insisting to drive it.  That’s your job, right?!

Yet this is what happens when trust is lacking in a business relationship.  If your customers do not trust you, their experience will be far from effortless.