For the best performing sales and marketing organisations the voice of their customer is vital for shaping future performance, with 100% of them systematically tracking customer feedback.
In contrast, only 34% of low performing organisations bother with customer feedback at all, we say they are missing a trick!
outside in recently contacted over a hundred customers to ask them about B2B sales and marketing performance. We looked at the key trends in the data and found some interesting results to support this point. Adding this to key findings from other studies we see a clear case to support the need for a systematic and broad ranging approach to customer engagement.
- The world economic downturn has put increasing pressure on customer retention. It is typical in these situations for customers to concentrate their reduced spending on few trusted organisations, are you one of those?
- It costs upto 10x more to acquire a new customer than it does to service and grow an existing one, look after them and well.
- In the outside in study, we can see that high performance organisations in our study retained customers much better than the rest; over 75% keeping more than 85% of their customers over the last two years. Low performing organisations fared much less well (only16% exceeded 85% retention)
- Connections are growing exponentially with the rise of social media, offering many opportunities for conversations about your brand outside of your direct control.
- A 5% increase in customer retention rates can increase a companies profitability by 75% (Bain & Company)
So what do you do about it?
You could carry on in the hope that you will come through this recession regardless of what your customers think about you. Hmmm.
Perhaps many of your customer are under contract and not likely to move anyway.... or as we would call them, "prisoners". This was the case in one organisation we worked with recently and they were surprised when they failed to win at contract renewal! In the long term it is not enough to continue doing the same things, ignorant of the fact that customers are not happy with the value you bring.
Alternatively, you could invest some time and effort with a simple, closed loop, systematic approach to customer engagement and feedback. This need not cost a fortune and can bring real insight into the strategic decisions you make.
After all, retaining just one of your major clients will repay the investment many times over!!