As an entrepreneur, you’ll be well aware of the importance of building a strong brand. This is a key differentiating factor which can set you apart from your competitors and turn casual customers into confirmed brand advocates. It’s the secret sauce that helps some companies to take off to the next level of growth. There are lots of elements that go into this process, from developing a visual identity to finding an audience niche, but one of the most fundamental is also one of the simplest – customer service.
Customer service represents the most direct touchpoint between your business and the customers it serves. And in today’s competitive global landscape, if your customers aren’t pleased with what you do for them and how you make them feel, it’s almost too easy for them to jump ship. Additionally, as a small business fighting for custom and recognition next to larger brands with far deeper pockets for advertising, your reputation is crucial. It can quite literally make or break the fortunes of your business.
The Cost of Retention vs Acquisition
When you’re a start-up with finite resources, you need to be smart about how you do things. And it’s a fact that retaining existing customers, gaining repeat business and upsell opportunities, is far cheaper than trying to attract new ones. It’s been shown that an increase in customer retention of just five per cent can equate to a massive twenty five per cent increase in profit. With those numbers at stake, you simply cannot afford to ignore exceptional customer service as a key profit generating tool.
Customers are more likely to spend more with your brand if they have a positive experience, and to recommend you to others as well – so that’s a stream of additional business without extra marketing spend. It doesn’t have to be direct – sites like BrandREVU can help you improve the way your reputation is spread online via customer reviews.
Customer Service Represents Your Company
When you wrote your business plan, no doubt you will have considered your company mission and the vision and values you had for the organization you hoped to build. Your customer service is the ultimate manifestation of this. It’s the responsibility of representing your brand and everything that it stands for at stake. As a direct channel of communication, the type of service your customers receive has a bigger impression on them that your website, your advertising and all those other things you’ve spent time and money carefully putting together – so don’t let bad service let the side down.
Increasing Your Profitability
It’s another fact that happy customers spend more, so keeping your service levels high has a direct impact on your bottom line. You could very well say that great customer service can make the difference between your company failing or succeeding. Audiences prize great service as it makes them feel valued. Most will go out of their way to give business to a company that they have had a great experience with, and their average purchase value will increase. This positive cycle is something to embrace and capitalize on as a route to growth that only requires a minimal investment.