Customers and clients are the lifeblood of any organization, regardless of industry. You need people to buy your product and utilize your services. This is why sales is so important. There are many sales funnel tools out there to help leads in your sales pipeline make it from the top of the sales funnel into qualified leads that convert into loyal, paying customers.
While sales have gotten more sophisticated, the internet has bombarded prospective leads with more offers and information than ever. The increase in sales promotions and offers and an increasingly systematic, impersonal way of obtaining leads has led to a disconnect between a ramped up sales marketing strategy and less than mediocre business growth and success. More sales materials are getting sent out to more people, but the number of prospects making it all the way through the conversion funnel has either stagnated or declined.
Voice of the Customer (VoC)
The lack of businesses keeping in touch with their prospective customers and clients is the biggest culprit of this disconnect. Businesses have become more about selling a product or service than meeting the needs of their customers. In fact, many businesses don’t know much about their customers.
Voice of the Customer (VoC) is the term used to describe the business sales process of listening and getting feedback from the customer so that the company can better meet their needs with their services or products. According to VoC, successful businesses are the ones that take the time to hear from their customers and evaluate how their products or services are meeting the needs of the customers. These successful businesses know their customers so well that they know what needs they have to be met.
Another element of voice of customer is the realization of the gap that may be present between the expectations of one’s customers to the brand and their actual experience with the brand, service or product. For a strong VoC, and therefore a more successful company, collaboration between business operations, product development and customer service must be seamless and unified in improving products and services to make it a better experience for the customer through each of the sales funnel stages.
There are many ways a company can begin to listen to their customers and practice voice of the customer methodology. Some of the most common practices include:
- Online reviews
- Customer surveys (on-site and online)
- Customer interviews
- Live chats
- Feedback forms
- Focus groups
- Social media interactions
- Website interactions
- Net Promoter Score
These abovementioned practices can all give your company a pulse as to what your customers’ experience is with your company and your products and services. By gathering customer feedback from different sources, you can get a better idea of who your customers are as well as their needs and how your products and services are or are not fully meeting those needs.
In addition to the practices mentioned above, a company can utilize VoC by synching it with their customer relationship management system (CRM).
Customer Relationship Management System (CRM)
You may have heard of customer relationship management (CRM) before. If you’re new to sales or work in a different department, CRM is a platform on which the interactions your company has with customers and potential customers are managed. The management of these customer relationships help your company improve its business relations with customers in order to stay in touch with customers, streamline your business’ customer processes and increase overall business profitability.
There are many CRMs out there and it could be overwhelming trying to select the best ones for your company. Most customer relationship management systems are highly sophisticated and give you great insight into your customer’s journey through your conversion funnel. There are many automated features that easily allow you to segment prospects to find those that will most likely convert.
Even though these are great at making your company’s sales, marketing and advertising initiatives effective and efficient in getting new customers to become a converting customer, there are holes that limit how successful it can be in achieving your company’s sales strategy.
Where most CRMs fall short is an area concerned with cold leads. These leads may have started your company’s purchase loop, but before they could arrive at the lead conversion phase, they stalled in their interest or pursuit to be enticed to be sold on your product or service.
Every company has cold leads and these types of leads have a variety of causes including changes in their own company, busyness, their needs weren’t getting met or they were the wrong customer in the first place. Many businesses forget about these leads and pursue those who look like they will become loyal, paying customers. Little do they know the great opportunity and value of these discarded cold leads.
VoC + CRM=Success
Have you caught on to the relationship between voice of the customer and customer relationship management? Listening to the customer and meeting the customer’s need are what join these two together and what will bring about business success.
According to VoC, companies that are in-tune with their customers and their needs will thrive. CRM gives one insight about the customers and CRMs, like Aktify identify those cold leads and instead of neglecting them, allow you to re-engage with them and rekindle your brand’s relationship with them. Aktify helps your company revive these cold, or dead, leads by identifying them and helping you hear from them and figure out where you’re not meeting their needs.
With Aktify, you’ll learn why your cold leads stalled in the purchase funnel and reestablish a relationship with those cold leads who still have an interest in becoming customers.
Not every cold lead is disinterested. Some simply started down the lead funnel and either got busy or saw that your product or service wasn’t what they needed. Aktify’s CRM lets you learn about these cold leads so as to hear about their needs and seek to meet them through the company’s products or services.
Hearing and getting feedback from the customer and knowing his or her needs and how your company’s product or service can help meet those needs are a fundamental principle of voice of the customer methodology. It is also a hallmark characteristic of successful companies. CRMs like Aktify can help you learn about the neglected needs of cold, or dead leads and take advantage of otherwise missed conversion marketing opportunities. If you’re tired of not getting all the leads you’re expecting, let us at Aktify help you resurrect your cold leads and let you keep in touch and be familiar with the needs of all your customers. Contact us to learn more.