Need an Update on “Customer Satisfaction” as a Management Tool?
Customer Satisfaction Is Not What It Used to Be – Thankfully!
Customer satisfaction analysis is used everywhere. To adjust parameters. To reassure ourselves that we are customer oriented – customer centric or maybe even customer driven.
A lot has happened since ”customer satisfaction” gained traction – these changes also relate to B2B companies.
In the beginning, customer satisfaction was often defined by a framework of questions concerning how satisfied customers were on certain parameters which could be adjusted, in turn making customers more satisfied. Often, companies alone defined on what parameters customer satisfaction should be measured.
The parameters later became parts of complex models which were able to define satisfaction factors and how they should mutually be weighted. Some years later, the weaknesses of the models were acknowledged and the NPS concept was invented. The simple question as “to which extent you would recommend a company on a ten point scale” could be data processed (and, if needed, be supplemented with a couple of questions as to the cause), thus providing a reliable expression of the overall customer satisfaction.
Eventually, the propagation of customer satisfaction measuring was strengthened when simple web software made it possible for companies on their own to – cheaply and quickly – conduct customer satisfaction surveys.
Today, in 2022, terms such as “strategic customer management” and “customer experience” enable “customer satisfaction” to be raised to another competence level from a managerial point of view.
- Strategic customer management yields an overview as well as a detailed management tool available to those in charge of a B2B company.
- Customer experience means that the “customer satisfaction” includes emotional parameters in a customer’s assessment of the company.
In our AALUND RECOMMENDATIONS we have used years of experience with customer satisfaction as well as our own research to describe some tools that can raise the competence (and turnover) of a customer-driven management.
Download a pdf with AALUND RECOMMENDATIONS on organic growth through strategic customer management by clicking the button below or by scrolling down to keep on reading.
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Aalund Recommendations - "Successful with customers?"
Strategic Customer Management
Organic growth comes from the 5 entrances named A to E. More often than not, a B2B company’s challenge may lie with B, C, and D.
This figure offers the strategic overview which the customer strategy of the company must be built from. An organisational setup needs to be created along with a distribution of managerial responsibilities, regularly repeated customer analyses, and an approved plan of action involving all circles and boxes in the figure. All this should be digitally supported in a tool available to various levels of management; including top management.
Digital Tool for Customer-Driven Strategic Management
A “Customer Relation Status” affords management a total picture of the current “state of health” in the B2B customer base or in a particular segment. As well as on an individual customer level.
Provide Top Management with a Customer Tool that it Will Love to Use
Top management is often far removed from customers – physically or when it comes to insight. It continues to be the case that 20 percent of customers comprise 80 percent of turnover. That can amount to 2-300 customers worldwide. Or merely 5 out of 20 customers in a B2B company.
B2B customer relations consist of many relations - and persons – within the company itself as well as with the customer. That is why it is difficult for top management to obtain an insight into the state of health of the collaboration – with just the major customers. Likewise, it can be difficult to locate the place in your own organization where things are less than optimal.
Aalund Sales Guard is a digital tool allowing top management, in only a couple of minutes, to get a complete overview and a deep insight into the relations and future with the company of an individual customer. It also lends an insight into the performance of all departments and Account Managers. Training is not necessary and it is accessible from all locations.
For a number of years, the tool has been used by one of the largest and most profitable companies in Denmark. Today, this company has accelerated away from its competitors worldwide – and is now at the top of its industry.
The Value of a Unique Customer Experience
In 2020, McKinsey calculated that 70 percent of the customer experience is decided by the manner in which a company “treats” its customers. In other words, how customers feel treated!
At Aalund, we have completed large surveys in 2021 and 2022 (4600 business leaders) which showed that “treating its customers” can be defined as shown in the figure below. This is where B2B companies in particular should pay attention to whether the customer feels appreciated. That feeling carries large consequences to customer satisfaction, recommendations, and image as shown by the initial figure.
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