Do You Set Your Own Customers’ Expectations?

Are You Meeting Your Customers’ Expectations?

Of course! I mean, they are not complaining, are they? Your customers are happy and they continue to do business with you, so you know their expectations are being met, right? The experience you offer is undoubtedly unique, and it continues to change as you respond promptly to feedback and requests. You even pay close attention to their behavior to get clues for what they will want next. Woot! You’ve done your CX Ed homework.

So It’s All Good! For now…

I asked a business owner recently what she thought about her competition. Her answer? “I don’t.” She said once she stopped worrying about her competition, she was able to better focus on her business. While I appreciate the thought, I worry about the future.

Do You Set Your Own Customers’ Expectations? image SpySpy600pxDo You Set Your Own Customers’ Expectations?

Your customers are simply not as loyal as they used to be. They are fickle and free to date others. They have no problem signing up for a free trial, wandering into the new ‘it’ store, or clicking purchase from your competitor’s mobile-optimized site.

The barriers to switching are low now.

It’s easy to cancel or order online. I argue that ignoring your competition in today’s marketplace is foolish. Your competitors are showing your customers what is possible on the other side of the fence. Eventually, your customers might just swing that gate open and walk on through to the other side. Here’s why.

They’re Under The Influence

We listen to our peer networks more than ever about purchases and business relationships. We are proven social creatures. The amount of “OMG – you have to see this!” that is passed around digitally daily has reached epic proportions. It just takes one feature, one product or one user experience to help a loyal customer try something new.

Watching what your competition is doing is critical since the chatter about your services or products will be compared in these circles to the chatter about your competitor’s. Some negative reviews will be from customers who have never tried your products, but they believe what they hear from their trusted network.

The First One’s Free.

Has there ever been an easier time to score free crap? Trials, Facebook sweepstakes, samples at train stations… it seems that every new company believes if only you could see it, touch it, use it, you’ll become a believer. And sometimes, it works. Just as AOL crammed our mailboxes for years with “free” CD’s, the digital era of free trials or freemium models welcomes your loyal customers with open arms.

They’re Watching You.

Make no mistake that your competition is watching you like a hawk. If business is like chess, then you should be thinking two moves ahead. Even if you are the big dog right now, don’t assume that little Chihuahua won’t catch up. Many market disrupters have been disrupted themselves, just when they thought they had made it to the top of the mountain. (How many “Apple is Dead” articles have popped up lately?)

This post was written for, and a version originally appeared on Sensei blog

Image Credit: tr.robinson via Creative Commons

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