“Get closer to your customer – or else”; “If we don’t take care of our customers, somebody else will”; “With us you’re number one”. Phrases, phrases, and more phrases. Not a single word in the marketing world has been more abused than the term ‘customer satisfaction’. It’s hip to deliver satisfaction; it fills conference rooms, goes down darn well at cocktail parties, and is the favourite topic in any marketing magazine.
It’s been on the international scene for quite a while – and with good reason. Locally, however, it lagged far behind. Every now and then it came up again, but never gaining momentum.Read More»
I have just returned from yet another conference on loyalty, this time amongst high net-value customers, in Johannesburg. I begin to wonder why people are still flocking to these events, spending big money on being presented with … the obvious. All the tools are out there, ready-made or in need of some customization. All the knowledge is out there, too, plentiful. Yet companies, and particularly those attending the conferences, seem to look for a quick fix, this magical formula up there in marketing heaven.
Luckily, this latest conference made it patently obvious that this magical formula just doesn’t exist. Regardless of topic presented, the one message that came through again and again was: all that really matters is you! You, You and …. You!Read More»
Do you believe in lifetime customer loyalty? I don’t. Granted, there are exceptional cases where it does exist, but that’s like marriages that weather the time for five or more decades; the exception rather than the rule. I don’t understand how consultancies can freely abuse the term loyalty, even throw around a term even more audacious: ‘customer ownership’. But doesn’t that show their real attitude towards the customer? Isn’t that why real loyalty is so hard to ‘achieve’? I certainly think so.
As long as companies regard their customers as something ‘they own’, rather than something they have the pleasure of sharing a mutually beneficial time with, they will wonder why they can’t achieve loyalty – or only at great cost.Read More»