Jeb Blount in his book People Love You: The Real Secret to Delivering Legendary Customer Experiences masterfully sets out the most important customer service challenge facing sellers today: “There is no loyalty when everything looks the same.”
From the client’s perspective, Blount argues, virtually all products and services are identical. If you do happen to have a truly unique product or service, similar offerings will very quickly enter the marketplace to compete with you.
If customers believe your offering is like everything else out there, how can you create a customer experience with the power to retain them when a competitor offers them a cheaper price or another color or a prettier package or better service or more bells and whistles?
The answer? Love. I know, at first glance it sounds silly. But it isn’t.
People Love You isn’t a pie-in-the-sky gooey piece of sugar floating somewhere outside reality. Blount builds a solid basis for creating a customer experience that results in an unbreakable relationship built on trust, solving real customer problems and creating positive emotional experiences.
Blount employs these seven essential principles of customer engagement:
1. You need your customers more than they need you.
2. Customers are people.
3. You are always on stage.
4. Customers act on emotion and justify with logic.
5. Customers do things for their reasons, not yours.
6. Customers don’t do illogical things on purpose.
7. Always give your customers more than required.
With this foundation laid, People Love You dives into the five levers of customer experience:
1. Put customers first.
3. Solve problems.
4. Build trust.
5. Create positive emotional experiences.
Blount says that the goal of the book is to “teach you techniques for interacting with customers in a way that creates deep, enduring relationships.” To that end, he says, “you must learn how to step into your customer’s shoes and to feel and see things from their point of view.”
Blount’s book deals specifically with the customer experience in the business-to-business sales world, but it’s just as applicable for the business-to-consumer seller.
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- Go the extra mile
- 3 ways to make sure your clients love you tomorrow
- 10 ways to keep ‘em coming back
Paul McCord is a best-selling author, speaker and leading authority on lead generation. He has more than 20 years’ experience coaching and mentoring salespeople. For more information, go to mccordandassociates.com.