Thursday, August 11, 2016

Title the Entitled “Risky to Please”

You can’t make everybody happy. But you’d think that if you do satisfy customers, they’d say that the product or service they got from you was more valuable. It often doesn’t work this way, according to University of Tulsa researchers. Season ticket holders for a National Hockey League franchise were asked for ratings of satisfaction with customer service and value from their ticket purchase. The finding was that many of the fans believed they were entitled to great customer service and therefore didn’t think great customer service added value.
     This falls in line with another set of findings at University of Georgia and University of Southern California, which looked at a variety of retail purchase types more typical than sporting events. Here, too, customers who believed they were entitled to great customer service weren’t particularly impressed when receiving it.
     Actually, customers might not even notice if you do manage to exceed expectations unless the excess is dramatic. When shoppers’ expectations are exceeded, shoppers with a sense of entitlement often take it for granted and don’t give lots of credit. It’s when expectations are not met that there’s an impact on the entitled customer’s evaluation of value.
     The risk in aiming to always exceed expectations is it nudges expectations up for the next time the customer visits. At some point, it is no longer profitable for you to keep raising the bar for yourself.
     For two reasons, this entitlement split between satisfaction and a sense of value is especially strong with retail transactions like those NHL tickets. First, season passes to name-brand sporting events are expensive, and when you’re paying a lot, you do start to feel entitled. Second, fans of a team tend to consider themselves part of what are known as “consumer tribes,” and members of such tribes reinforce each other’s sense of entitlement.
     Whatever you’re selling, when a group of your customers share not only an allegiance to your store, but also a passion for shopping with you, and when those customers share their passion with each other, you’ve created a consumer tribe.
     Historically, consumer tribes have been more exclusive than inclusive. A source of the members’ emotional devotion was a conviction that they were distinctive. However, in the interest of getting better returns on your customer service work, I recommend you encourage fans to invite others in rather than you creating a sense of entitlement for tribe members.

For your profitability: Sell Well: What Really Moves Your Shoppers

Click below for more: 
Handle Customer Satisfaction As Relative
Dazzle Your Customers
Show Effectiveness with Stewardship Claims
Try Being a Tribe Without Reservations
Profit from Status with Loyal Customers

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