In business, we often focus on the competition or our bottom line, while assuming that we already know all we need to know about how our customers feel about our services or products. But, according to an article in Inc., two of the most common mistakes entrepreneurs make are:
- Not connecting with customers by providing a product they love
- Building too many features into their products or services instead of offering something that solves customer needs in the most simplified way
The article advises that, "Your customers should love your product. If not, then you have a real problem. You need to find out why. The only way you can do that is by really listening and responding to their needs.”
So how do super busy entrepreneurs and business owners carve out time to understand their customers better? It starts with developing an ongoing customer intelligence system designed specifically for their business.
A simple but strong system should include these four components:
- Mechanisms for customer-facing staff to obtain feedback and record it
- Regular evaluation of customer data
- Monthly or quarterly customer insights activities
- Annual evaluation of your customers’ needs and satisfaction level
This can be as basic or sophisticated as your budget and time allow - but leaders of successful organizations will tell you: put something in place.