Posted by Sheena Shahangian on August 16, 2016
Listen360’s Angela Bossie, panelist at the IFA Women’s Franchise Network event in Atlanta
The Customer Experience: Key to Long-Term Growth.
Last week at the Women’s Franchise Network event in Atlanta, we had the pleasure of listening to three expert panelists discuss the importance of nurturing and retaining customers. Among those speakers was our very own Angela Bossie, Listen360 Chief Customer Officer.
The discussion ultimately centered on the key question to developing loyalty: how can franchisors and their franchisees build a culture of customer satisfaction? And how do we measure such endeavors? After all,the marketing cost to acquire new customers continues to rise, and the most successful franchise businesses must work hard to nurture and retain existing customers. The overwhelming consensus amongst the panelists was that customer feedback and reviews were the driving force behind building a brand, improving performance and ROI, and maintaining overall brand health.
Analyzing customer feedback helps franchisors and franchisees see where they should be putting their resources. Maintaining a regular database of feedback from customers allows each franchisee to drill down and identify specific issues that may only be relevant to their store or location.
One very interesting issue that came up multiple times in discussion was the importance of looking at negative feedback as an opportunity rather than a threat. With tools like Listen360, owners and employees can get real-time negative feedback sent to their email and phone, and those individuals then have the power to respond almost immediately to customer concerns. Many brands have taken this negative feedback and used it to address the immediate concerns of their customers while also identifying core issues and trends amongst their customer base.
Interestingly, many brands have noticed that individuals become stronger promoters if you handle difficult situations and complaints with grace than if the customer was a promoter from the very beginning. These dissatisfied customers are surprised that the brand took the time to deal with a single individual’s concerns. And the sooner this interaction occurs, the more delighted the customer becomes.
As Annica Kreider, VP of Brand Development for Mellow Mushroom so brilliantly stated, “you can really look like a customer success rockstar if you have the information.” We here at Listen360 wholeheartedly agree. But we’d also argue that it’s more than having the information. The franchisors and franchisees must use the tools at their disposal to act upon that information.
The secret is to always keep a finger on the pulse of your customers and always be on your toes to respond to any issues that may arise. In a world where we expect almost immediate feedback, many franchisors see tools like Listen360 as a no-brainer. They give the franchisor a competitive advantage over those who are manually keeping track of feedback.
Interested in listening to the whole talk? WATCH THE VIDEO to learn more about this important aspect of nurturing and growing your business.