Brian Kazungu, 10/05/2023
Customer Service is a process of humane and professional attention and treatment given to clients, before, during and after a transaction. It focuses on both the quality of the product and on the approaches that are adopted in the course of interaction or engagement.
When humanely and professionally done, a good customer service creates a beautiful shopping experience and promotes a good relationship with your clients in a way which guarantees continued and profitable patronage.
The whole concept of good customer service is hinged on having a good quality product which is offered to a specific target market in the best fulfilling way possible.
- The product – what is it that you want to offer to your clients in exchange for money?
- The targeted market – who do you want to offer this product to – who is this client?
- The unique approach – how do you intend to effectively and profitably engage the market with your product? How do you treat these customers in the process of engagement?
In order for you to develop a better appreciation of good customer service and its benefits, you must first understand what is a customer.
I can describe a customer as any person or organisation with the desire and or means to buy your products (services) towards the satisfaction of their own needs and wants.
Customers are an integral component in the operations of any enterprise because, without them, there is no business to talk about.
The importance of a customer comes from the mere fact that a business exists for the purpose of profitably attending to and addressing the needs and wants of its target market through providing satisfactory goods and services in exchange for a payment, mostly in the form of money.
As a business, you get money in exchange for selling your products to your target market. A target market in this case refers to a customer or a group of customers who have the desire and or means to buy your products.
Real customers are those people or institutions with the will and or capacity to buy what you are selling. Without such, your business will fail.
Please note that, selling simply refers to the act or process of offering or presenting products and services to your clients so that they can buy at their convenience.
Basically put, selling covers issues to do with the real shopping experience.
When properly done, the selling process gives you an opportunity to create and establish a good relationship with your clients. It can also enhance and solidify your engagement with customers in a way that can prompt them to come again for more satisfaction in exchange for their money.
You must always bear in mind that when a client gives you money in exchange for your products, it means you have made a sale. I can therefore define a Sale as the actual exchange that happens between a buyer (customer) and a seller after meeting the conditions of a transaction.
In a book called The Fundamental Congruence Analysis Pocket Book, the importance of a customer is well articulated through what is referred to as a Fundamental Congruence Checklist.
In this case, the Fundamental Congruence Checklist seeks to answer critical questions that are important for analyzing the relevance of our customers in our engagement with them.
Customer Congruence Analysis Checklist
- What is a customer?
A customer is any person or organisation with the desire and or means to buy your products (services) towards the satisfaction of their own needs and wants.
- What does a customer do and how?
A customer buys your products and services or supports your cause through the use of an agreed medium of exchange in a conducive environment.
- Why does a customer do so?
He/she helps you to achieve your goals through patronage in exchange for his/her satisfaction that comes from using your product or service.
- What happens if a customer does not do so or does not do it in the right way?
If you don’t have customers, you will fail to accomplish your mission because of lack of revenue and cash flow.
- Where is a customer situated in the matrix of your business operations?
A customer is the central or core feature of the mission or the basis of your existence as an institution.
- Why does a customer occupy such a position in our business operations?
We consider customers to be central to your mission or in the dynamics of your business because they are the hinge and pivot of all our operations. They occupy the VIP section.
- What happens if we change a customer’s position/value or if it’s no longer prioritized?
When a Customer is no longer the central or focal point of your institution, you will lose patronage, revenue and relevance.
- Who is in charge of customer relations in your organization and why is that so?
The entrepreneur is in charge of meeting the needs and wants of the Customer or Audience through delegation of duties and responsibilities to people in his team.
- How is the effectiveness of your customer care assessed?
The correct treatment of your clients is seen through customer satisfaction, continued engagement and in the accomplishment of your set goals.
- What happens if your customer care approach is effective or not?
If Customers are seriously considered and valued in the affairs of your institution, it means that success is guaranteed, but if they are not given the attention they really deserve, it means that you are doomed to stumble and fail.
When you value your customers, they get tickled when they see your product, they get excited when they consume it and they get passionate when they refer others to buy your products.
There is definitely a certain unique and almost indescribable feeling that customers get when they engage a person or a business which cherishes them.
Such a feeling makes them want to continue patronizing your business. It makes them want to always visit your premises or to regularly browse your website etc. You become part of their world.
This is because the experience and satisfaction which they get when they buy from you or when they consume your product is a unique signature that you imprint in their hearts and minds.
Adapted from The Universal Customer Service Manual written by Brian Kazungu
Author Profile: https://www.amazon.com/author/briankazungu