Traditional marketing was used to get customers “in the door.” But today’s marketing keeps customers coming back. It’s more than a marketing message; it’s a marketing experience. Service professionals such as field service technicians represent the human face of a company and can make a huge impact when working in tandem with marketing.
More and more, the case for customer service and experience is being closely linked, if not actually being made one and the same. The marketing department has always been responsible for delivering a message or brand promise that makes customers want to do business with you. At one time marketing was all about the product. In some cases, it still is. However, smart companies are recognizing that what they sell is a commodity, in that most of the time their customers can find the exact product, or something very similar, at another business or website. The smart companies market more than the product. They market the benefit of buying that product from them, and the benefit is the promise of quality service and an amazing experience.
Think about advertising on TV, radio, print and online that touts various customer service awards, such as JD Power. These companies want you to know they deliver value beyond the product. That is what they do to de-commoditize themselves from their competition.
Marketing today continues long after customers hear or see the original message. It happens throughout the entire customer journey, and when the customer comes back, it repeats itself. The new way of marketing is to be so good throughout the customer’s journey – at every interaction or touch-point – that the customer not only wants to come back, but also evangelizes on behalf of the company. (Hence the term word-of-mouth marketing.) The perfect situation is when the customer tells their friends, family members, business associates and social network about not only the product they love, but the company from which they bought it.
The key is to manage all of the contact that your customers have with you throughout and after their experience to reinforce that they made the right decision to do business with you. It’s about how you handle the touch-points and interactions that the customer has with your field service representatives, your website, your support channels and more.
Quality service drives the customer experience. That’s your best marketing.
This article first appeared on Shep Hyken’s Customer Service Blog and was written by Shep Hyken. You can read the full version here.