I frequently get frustrated by the appalling way that many businesses, across all sectors, treat their existing (and often loyal) customers. Well it’s time to make to make a stand.
The way existing customers are treated, good or bad, starts with the culture of the business or organisation. Far too many companies are obsessed with “bright and shiny” new business, to the detriment of existing clients. It dominates the corporate Key Performance Measures.
Furthermore the remuneration framework often encourages employees to go out and win new customers rather than to nurture or retain the existing.
Most sectors are guilty of this, whether it is the banks, mobile phone companies, utility providers, pay to view TV subscriptions, transaction based financial advisers, the list goes on. Just look at the examples you see all around you on a daily basis…
- Freefone number for new sales and premium rate lines for “Customer Service”
- Marketing spend focused on acquisition activities rather than retention strategies
- New business dominated performance measures
- Targeting offers at “new customers only”
- High (or low) interest rates to attract new savers (borrowers) and then reducing/increasing rates down the line and hoping lethargy or inertia does the rest
- Power (and reward) within organisations resting with sales and marketing whilst customer service are seen as second class citizens
- Sales calls answered in the UK and customer service calls offshore
I could go on but you get the message.
Where are the organisations that really, genuinely care about you and I. I can’t wait for the day that my bank writes to me to tell me that the interest rate on my savings account has been reduced but that there is a much more attractive rate available in their new improved supersaver account designed especially and exclusively for existing savers!! Now that would be novel…but I won’t be holding my breath.