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Mike Gorun

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Exceeding Expectations or Solving Customer Problems: What’s More Important?

 

In a recent article on Forbes.com, “The Final Frontier: Customer Expectations,” Robert Passikoff points to a shift in the past 15 years: customer expectations have increased significantly, rising 24 percent in all categories. After explaining how customer loyalty is measured and providing an example from the wireless carrier industry, Passikoff concludes, “…brands that are able to better meet – even exceed – growing customer expectations always end up on the top of the list.”

Tying customer loyalty scores to customer expectations is not the answer. Why? Loyalty scores are important, but they don’t take into account all the reasons customers stick with a company. The “how well” question is the field of loyalty. The “if/if not solved” is the field of performance.

Until we come up with a “complacency” or “frustrated and stuck” index and begin dissecting truly loyal, enthusiastic consumers from those who don’t have the time or resources to navigate the breaking of a contract, loyalty is one metric – but not the most important metric we can fully trust to drive improvements in customer experience and organization performance.

What is more important: exceeding customer expectations or solving customers’ problems?

 

Source: Driving Retention and Business2Community.com, February, 2012. Author, Linda Ireland.

 

Chris Costner
In my opinion, I would think to keep both at the same level of importance. Going the extra mile in the beginning will set everything in a positive direction but we need to keep the same attitude when things happen that could change the customer's perception of our company forever.
Bryan Armstrong
I think it's the difference between bein reactive vs. proactive. More importantly, are we clearly setting out, defining for the Consumer and then following what "The Expectation" should be? That problem that made you lose the customer may be because no one explained that you weren't going to add the $5000 lift and tires to his new Truck until the Deal funded. "What is more important: exceeding customer expectations or solving customers’ problems?" Clear and concise communication could make this question a moot point.
Chris Costner
Bryan you are exactly right. Many times the "problems" that occur are a result of bad communication from the dealer side. No doubt.
Jim Bell
You hit it on the head Bryan...it's all about being proactive and not reactive. If we are proactive and giving the experience, customers will come and buzz will start. If something goes sideways and we are reactive, well, it could blow up in our faces. Communication is key.
Jim Bell
You hit it on the head Bryan...it's all about being proactive and not reactive. If we are proactive and giving the experience, customers will come and buzz will start. If something goes sideways and we are reactive, well, it could blow up in our faces. Communication is key.

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