Understanding Your Customer is Key

Marketing is all about understanding the needs of your customer so that you can position your offering to meet these effectively. I am a marketer, its my job, its what I do and yet people regularly ask me why I am always ranting about poor customer service? Its because customer service is all about meeting the needs of customer – its an integral part of any company’s marketing approach – and it can be quite a challenge.

The other day, I went into my local baker (again!). The person behind the counter was very chipper and friendly and was interacting in a non threatening way with customers. When she had put together someone’s order, she would ask people “are you treating yourself to anything today?” which lead customers to buy more but not feel forced into it. When it came my turn, I resisted the chocolate chip scone I had been eyeing but she insisted they were great and would I like to try one on the house. Off course I took the sample and felt good about my buying experience. HOWEVER, the gentleman in front of me obviously was very uncomfortable with her amicable approach. He seemed agitated when he came in the store and avoided eye contact with the server despite her friendly manner. He was obviously relieved to get out with his loaf.

My point here…. The server should have taken one look at the customer, noticed he had a sour face and changed her approach accordingly.

Every customer is individual and on on any given day attitudes can be change. Taking a little time and care to assess each customer individually and to adapt your service approach to that individual will in turn help you provide a more appropriate service. This will increase your customer loyalty and have a positive effect on the bottom line.

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