Sales Make it Happen
Rethinking Customer Loyalty
Customer loyalty is a major concern for everyone in business today, perhaps because there appears to be so little loyalty among so many customers. At best, loyalty is fleeting among many customers, and at worst, it simply isn’t part of their thinking.
I am always amazed at how many books are written each year on the subject of customer loyalty. These books are written and read, I think, because we don’t want to face the reality of pervasive disloyalty in the business world. We do a good job for our customers, we treat them fairly, our pricing is competitive and we remain loyal to our customers. So why aren’t they more loyal to us?
At the risk of sounding cynical, customer loyalty really is a simple concept, and for me can be boiled down into the following statement: Customers are loyal so long as the rewards of loyalty outweigh the rewards of disloyalty! Approached from this understanding, the challenge of gaining customer loyalty may not become easier, but surely comes into clearer focus.
To make matters more challenging, providing good service to customers today will not guarantee continued loyalty. I was shocked to discover that 80% of
customers who switch vendors rate the service of their previous vendors as “satisfactory to good.” Good service is no longer good enough to guarantee customer loyalty!
Keeping customers loyal continues to be more challenging than ever for most businesspeople. Next week we will explore some ways to promote customer loyalty in highly competitive industries, like equipment financing.
--- from the desk of a retired, successful leasing company president.