Hearing Your Customers Isn’t Enough: The Real Key to Solving CustomerChurn Lies in How You’re Listening

“It’s easy to set up a listening post on social media or another channel, but quite another to gather feedback, internalize it and put it toward transformative change.”

When I first read that comment by Jennifer Passini, I had two immediate reactions:

  • I disagreed (well, partially). For many brands, setting up effective listening posts and processes isn’t easy either.
  • I wanted to read on, to see what else she had to say.

So glad I did. In her recent article for CMS Wire, Passini pinpoints the obstacle that seems to stop so many organizations in their tracks as they grapple with customer churn: a failure to distinguish (and therefore, understand) between different causes of customer disappointments and brand defections.

As you read her very persuasive argument for focusing on – and investing in – the customer concerns you can control, consider the untapped power of your customer care team.

At Skybridge Americas, we specialize in delivering superior customer experience, helping America’s most loved brands engage and retain their customers. If you would like to know how we can help you, please reach out. We would love to talk!

Understanding the ‘Why’ Behind Customer Churn

By Jennifer Passini

One of the biggest goals that I see companies set is reducing customer churn. Considering that it’s far cheaper to keep existing customers than to acquire new ones, the goal makes sense. Experience programs are powerful tools when it comes to reducing churn, but much like everything else having to do with experience improvement (XI), they require continuous effort and fine tuning if brands want to reduce churn.

You May Be Hearing, But Are You Listening?

Hearing your customers and listening to them are two different things. It’s easy to set up a listening post on social media or another channel, but quite another to gather feedback, internalize it and put it toward transformative change. This also means truly listening to both solicited and unsolicited feedback, as well as both structured and unstructured data.

Customers provide a company with feedback because they expect the company to listen to them. Customers also give feedback because they want to be heard and make a difference with a brand. They may want to reward a brand and its staff for a great experience, to report a bad experience or broken journey touchpoint, or discuss more fundamental issues that might cause them to seek out the competition.

In other words, a listening program can help lower and even prevent customer churn, which is why setting up such an initiative is a great first step to that goal. Brands can use listening programs to reduce churn by truly absorbing feedback, understanding its sentiments and creating action plans that may include employee coaching, fixing journey touchpoints, and other measures that help customers see they’re being listened to. This, in turn, keep those individuals from going to other brands and reduces churn.

Why Do Customers Leave?

Creating a listening program or brushing up an existing one are great ways to reduce customer churn, but having such an initiative isn’t always enough. Many customers don’t take time to provide feedback that might otherwise save an at-risk relationship. Other times, they simply may not know how to submit feedback in the first place and leave all the same…

Read the complete article here >

-Bobby Matthews
Senior Vice President, Sales and Marketing
Skybridge Americas

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