How to Increase Customer Satisfaction With the Right Amount of Hand-Holding

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Every business loves a happy customer. But I’ve found that it’s really easy to equate a quiet customer with a happy one, even though they can be two very different things.

They aren’t mutually exclusive. On the contrary, a happy customer can often use a product or service in quiet anonymity.

However, unhappy customers can also be suspiciously quiet. Vala Afshar, Chief Digital Evangelist at Salesforce, reports that 91% of unhappy customers who are non-complainers will leave a brand without notice.

If you want to provide a positive customer experience that creates and retains a successful track record of satisfied patrons for your brand, you need to be proactive. Here are a few ways brands can increase customer satisfaction by meeting their customers where they are as they move along the customer journey.

Provide High-Quality Support Value

After investing so much time, effort, and resources into developing a product, it’s tempting to exclusively focus on getting it to market, closing sales, and generating revenue. But you don’t want to do that without surrounding each SKU with the necessary supporting documentation.

It irks me when I see product teams toss in a half-baked user manual, generate a bulky PDF alternative, or skip creating an FAQ as if they’re afterthoughts. In my opinion, that isn’t just lazy. It’s a genuine failure to put yourself in the customer’s shoes.

Supporting documentation, whether it’s a user manual, a troubleshooting tip, or a 101 concept, should be a priority. They should take the customer by the hand and walk them through the user experience. They are also user-friendly and provide genuine value at every step. This makes the user experience easier, paving the way for an informed, supported, and happy customer.

How do you create support content with genuine value? Again, start with the customer.

Contiem points out that static PDFs and bulky user manuals are obsolete. The content solutions provider adds, “Customers want searchable content they can access on-demand by pulling out their laptop, tablet, or cell phone.”

If you want to improve the customer experience, don’t just create a great product. Back it up with accessible, user-friendly product documentation that adds value to the entire experience.

Embrace Growth Marketing

The way you market a product matters. Traditionally-minded marketers start with a product and consider how they can promote it to customers. They take features and benefits and shoe-horn them into customer needs.

The problem is that when you do that, you’re putting the cart before the horse.

If you want to create a better customer experience, you have to look beyond the product and keep your eyes focused on the customer at all times. In marketing, this is referred to as growth marketing.

Growth marketing puts the customer at the center of the marketing process. Rather than focusing on specific products or parts of the sales funnel, it considers the customer lifecycle as a whole.

It’s a subtle difference. But I’ve found that when you embrace a growth marketing mindset, you end up tailoring your products, support documentation, marketing messages, and customer service to what your customers actually need. Its emphasis on the customer also makes growth marketing an easy way to use important tools like analytics and generative AI.

Take the time to track your customer data, study your target audience, and consider the consumer pain points you’re trying to answer. The result will improve your customer experience and give your brand the reputation of a company that knows how much hand-holding your ideal customer requires.

Utilize Customer Service

Despite the emphasis put on it in the modern era, customer service remains an afterthought for many companies. It might get a little more attention these days, but in reality, serving customers after the point of sale isn’t prioritized as a critical part of the business cycle.

In my experience, this is a major mistake. Your customer service team is the lifeline for long-term success. It makes your average customer lifetime value possible after a customer has made an initial purchase.

If a consumer is going to remain a loyal customer for the long haul, your customer service team will play a part in that retention process at some point along the way. This makes investing in your customer service a critical part of the customer satisfaction process — and in more ways than one.

For instance, you should never treat customer service as a cold, calculated, perfunctory service. Instead, approach customer service as an opportunity to provide customer care.

Zendesk defines the term as “when companies treat their customers with respect and kindness and build an emotional connection with them.” The customer service brand adds that this isn’t something that you should delegate to a customer service representative. It should take place at every point of contact with a brand.

Emphasizing customer care ensures that you train and equip your team with the ability to enhance the customer experience, whether they’re just learning or are a repeat customer returning years after their initial purchase.

Customer service is also a great way to proactively garner feedback. Remember, most unhappy customers neglect to communicate their dissatisfaction. Customer service interactions provide an opportunity to ask questions and seek feedback to improve in the future.

Effectively Increasing Customer Satisfaction

Never assume that silence means you have happy customers. Instead, actively invest in improving your customer experiences in the name of creating satisfied customers at every interaction.

Provide quality support documentation that approaches explanations from the customer’s perspective. Use customer-centric growth marketing tactics. Utilize customer service as a way to amplify customer care and gather valuable feedback.

If you can do that, you can increase customer satisfaction in a manner that respects your target audience and their needs. It holds their hand when they need it without becoming overbearing or insensitive. And at the end of the day, it’s providing this thoughtful help and effectively meeting needs that will keep your brand strong over time.

Image credit: Pexels

Chalmers Brown
Chalmers is the Co-founder and CTO of Due. He writes for some of the largest publications and brands in the world including Forbes, The Next Web, American Express, and many more.

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