A customer-centric way of doing business is focused on providing a positive customer experience before and after the sale in order to drive repeat business, enhance customer loyalty and improve business growth.
Both Amazon and Zappos are prime examples of brands that are customer-centric and have spent years creating a culture around the customer and their needs. Their commitment in delivering customer value is genuine. In fact, Zappos is happy to fire employees if they do not fit within their customer-centric culture!
Some time ago, Econsultancy asked what the most important characteristic was in order to establish a truly “digital-native” culture.
Yet, according to CMO Council, only 14% of marketers believe that customer-centricity is a hallmark of their companies.
Let’s explore ways to create a customer-centric strategy that connects your business to the unique needs of your customers.
- Name your client-driven values. Start by writing down a list of client-focused values that you want to embody in your work. …
- Gather data about your clients. …
- Personify your interactions. …
- Grow your customer service skills. …
- Think about your desires as a client.
Business Development Basics: A Client-Centric Approach
Why is a client-centric approach important?
A client-centric approach is important because it connects a businesss functions to what their clients want. Most businesses have some element of client-centricity so they can develop a strategy for connecting with their customers and meeting their expectations for projects, but some companies make client-centricity an integral part of their values and culture. Here are some of the main benefits of having a client-centric strategy in business:
What is a client-centric approach?
A client-centric approach is a workflow strategy where the needs and opinions of the customer are your top priority when completing your work. Having a client-centric approach involves constantly considering how your individual behaviors and the overall operations of the company influence the clients wellbeing.
This involves gathering feedback from clients, incorporating their ideas into products and services, offering in-depth customer service options and striving to resolve all issues and complaints thoroughly. Customer retention is also extremely important in a client-centric approach, and one of the main goals of a client-centric company is to attract customers and encourage them to become loyal to the business.
How to develop a client-centric approach
Use these steps as a guide to create a customer-centric strategy for your work:
1. Name your client-driven values
Start by writing down a list of client-focused values that you want to embody in your work. Be specific about how you want to apply the client-centric mindset in your position. This can help you take the idea of client-centricity and connect it to specific outcomes. For example, a salesperson may take the value of providing clients with an excellent experience in the store and match it to the outcome of increasing their sales numbers. By writing down client-focused goals, you can create motivation to incorporate client-based behaviors in your daily routine.
2. Gather data about your clients
Having a client-driven approach is most effective when you have evidence to support your decisions, so collect data about your clients and what they want. You can do this by conducting market research, distributing surveys to customers or hosting focus groups to learn about what they want out of their business interactions. Ask specific questions to gather information about every aspect of their wants and needs in a business situation, from the features they want from products to what they value in a shopping experience. Collecting this information can help you discover trends to shape your overall strategy.
3. Personify your interactions
Although data is important, you can increase your client-centric mindset by remembering the individuals that comprise your client base. You can do this by creating persona profiles of individual customers, or you can meet with real people in your target audience. Personifying the data and building relationships with clients can help you understand the importance of paying attention to what clients need.
4. Grow your customer service skills
Invest in your own professional development and focus on growing your client-facing skills. Determine what aspects of customer service you want to enhance, and actively work to grow in these areas. You can attend customer service workshops, shadow your colleagues or practice with mock scenarios to grow your persuasion, patience and listening skills. Refining your customer service skills can help you grow into leadership positions and understand the basis for your overall strategy when planning your approach with clients.
5. Think about your desires as a client
As you work on assignments and complete projects, consider what you want when youre in the position of being a client. Adjust your perspective and think about the times when you have a special customer service experience. Empathizing with the client perspective as you work can ensure that you provide a customized, attentive experience and design systems with the client experience in mind.
Metrics to measure client-centric behavior
Here are some common metrics that you can use to measure client-centricity and determine the effectiveness of your approach with clients:
Example of a client-centric approach
Here is one example of a client-centric approach:
The CEO of Blue Ridge Suites aims to provide a quality experience for all customers. They provide customer service training for all employees and emphasize the values of treating customers with kindness and respect. When designing the hotels, the architects consider the accessibility of the floor plans and add extra space in the doorways to make the rooms feel more luxurious. They host a focus group and incorporate feedback about the layout and room design to create a more welcoming space.
All customer service associates have a clear policy for escalating issues with customers, including a list of upgrades and accommodations they can provide for different types of issues. When billing issues occur, there is an automatic chargeback system so customers have immediate access to their funds to prevent inconveniences. The front desk has staff available 24/7 and a complimentary concierge with knowledge of local attractions as an extra benefit.
How do you develop customer centric approach?
- Operationalize customer empathy. …
- Hire for customer orientation. …
- Democratize customer insights. …
- Facilitate direct interaction with customers. …
- Link employee culture to customer outcomes. …
- Tie compensation to the customer.
What are the key skills of customer centric?
How do you train employees to be customer centric?
- Communication. The vision and values that top management communicates, both verbally and behaviorally, set the tone and direction. …
- Skills. …
- Accountability. …