Can you imagine a business surviving without customers or clients? Can a company serve its services without customers? The answer is, NO! Customers are a source of income and a business cannot grow without customers. Customers are a life to any organisation. They are the only way by which an organization can earn its profits. Sam Miller, an expert in Software Business Management, suggests in one of his articles that a profit-oriented business cannot leave their customers behind for the very purpose of obtaining profit.
But, we often come across customers who experience “Bad customer-service”. Bad customer-service often leads to downfall of a business. Customers put a halt on availing a service if they do not experience the right kind of customer service. According to a well-known survey on ‘Why customers quit’, it was found that 68% of the customers quit availing a service because they experience an indifference from the company owners, managers or the employees working in that organization. The graph below gives a clear picture why most customers “quit”.
Also, the survey highlights that a business hears only from 4% of business customers and rest of the 96% just leave the service.
Therefore, we infer that the above data poses a cause of worry for a business because of the alarming figures and the loss to business thereafter.
Usually, SMEs and startups encounter such situations of customer mismanagement system. Business communication is generally weak in SMEs. Since the only priority for an SME is to expand, therefore business communication for such businesses is of utmost importance. For small-sized companies, it is very important to cut costs and to maintain good relationships with the customers. For example, ABX is a courier company having 4 people working and there are 25 to 100 customers calling this company everyday to acquire this service. Now the question is being a small business, how would they hire so that no call is missed, ever? Also, the possibility of increase in the number of clients calling can put them in a difficult situation. Thus, the whole idea of cutting down costs is broken and since they cannot afford to hire so many employees, there is a loophole created in the business communication system which results in poor customer experience. So, is there a way to eliminate this problem?
Call management system is a new path that is proving to be fruitful for SMEs in the market. A study by Dr. Lund states that when we communicate with someone else, the way they interpret are based on three things:
- 55% on their facial expressions and gestures;
- 37% is based on the voice; and
- 8% on the words.
This signifies that the voice can prove beneficial for the SMEs. Thus, call management system in this process of growing big for SMEs, is a more economical approach. Before implementing this system you need to understand your customers better and the following can be done to achieve this:
1. Be your customer
One can understand what exactly is going in a customer’s head by facing their situation. This means that you experience the service provided by your business by being the customer yourself.
2. Discover alongside your customers
Sometimes it is quite important for an organization to educate themselves while they educate the concept of their products to the customers. For example, GE in China had invited its top customers to a seminar on leadership and innovation along with the company’s local executives and account managers. This helped GE understand the Chinese counterpart’s mindset. It then proved to be easier to influence their customers’ behavior. So, the whole idea of learning and unlearning is not just the work of the customers but along the the way, the company has an equal role to play.
Sometimes the customers are just waiting to be asked about how they feel about the service they are being provided by an organization. Questionnaires and surveys are the most established techniques to receive feedback. Customers feel awkward and overwhelmed to answer such a question when asked in person.
A customer would want to know what is in store for him tomorrow and if a long term association is beneficial. Therefore, it is important for a company to anticipate the future. Meeting your products with the future needs of customers is important. Steve Jobs and Richard Branson always anticipated on what customers might need later in the future. This helps in scenario planning and establishing how market shifts will affect customers.
5. Shuffle organization teams
Sometimes it is important for the senior leaders of the company to know about what the customers really want!
Indian e-commerce giant Flipkart’s policy spells out that the senior management of the company must once in a month deliver the orders themselves to their customers. This ensures that each and everyone has clear picture about the needs of the customers.
But the above mentioned points cannot be attained by visiting each and every customer in person as there are large numbers of customers and reaching out masses is important for an organization and especially for SMEs as their main objective is to “GROW.” In such cases, a call management system plays a vital role. The basic idea of call management is to ensure proper business communication with the customers. Providing virtual numbers to your customers of your business will make it easy for customers to contact you at one single point! These virtual numbers are a part of cloud telephony system and this system proves beneficial in reaching out the masses, cutting down costs at the same time. Adom Brown II, a specialist in small business PBX systems, suggests in one of his articles that Virtual PBX along with cloud has provided real advantages to SMEs by cutting down costs and giving affordable call rates.