The Importance of Good Customer Communications

The key to excellent customer relationships is to maintain first class communications from day one.

The Importance of Good Customer CommunicationsThe phrase ‘under promise, over deliver’, is still very relevant in today’s market. By managing your customers’ expectations, their opinion of you can be greatly enhanced, they will be more likely to use you again in the future and tell their colleagues, friends and family about you.

I am sure you have all been frustrated at various times by not being called back by a company when they promised that they would. How often have you waited in all day for a tradesman who didn’t turn up or a parcel that didn’t arrive? The most frustrating thing is that if they had managed your expectations and communicated with you as delays happen (lets face it, life does get in the way and delay can be unavoidable even from companies with excellent customer service levels), the frustration can be handled. A phone call to keep us informed is not only a matter of common courtesy but an essential element of good customer service. If we know in good time that the arrangements we have made need to be changed we can usually make other plans to minimise the inconvenience.

The Importance of Good Customer Communications

In any role that involves providing a service for customers, both internal and external customers, (and most jobs fall in to this category) it is vital that you keep them informed and update them with the progress you are making.  This will be appreciated and help to cement the good relationship. This is particularly important if you are running behind schedule or if you need input from them before you can make further progress. Another tip, make sure you communicate with your client in the way they prefer for example, don’t call if their preference is for email communications and never text unless they do first!

A company I worked for in a previous role always sent out a customer satisfaction survey on completion of each job. Typical feedback would say ‘we were delighted with the product, the quality was first class and all of our staff and customers commented favourably. We only wish we had been told when you were coming to install as we had not prepared for your fitters to arrive.’ We made sure we implemented a procedure that gave the production manager responsibility for communicating with the customer at each stage of the manufacturing process to overcome this.

The Importance of Good Customer Communications

A great example of making me feel totally satisfied as a customer was the company who fitted blinds into my new windows. I received text and email messages from them from the time I first made contact to the day after installation. They thanked me for my order, informed me of the progress they were making and checked that I was satisfied with the quality of workmanship and the conduct of the installer. It made me feel valued as a customer and certainly more inclined to recommend them than if they had ignored me all through the sales progress.

So, whether you have good or bad news to impart to the customer communicate them, keep them updated and involve them at every step of the sales, manufacture and installation stage if appropriate. If you do this you will increase the chances that they will be a repeat customer and recommend you to others.

If not they will simply find a supplier that will give them this level of customer service!

 

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