You don’t have to be a doctor to understand customer pain

By Marc O'Dwyer - 11th Feb 2019

Find under: Accounting

 

 

You know where your customer’s pain points are, don’t you? It’s a singular customer because even if you are following this process a thousand times over, there is only one customer who matters: the one you are talking to at that moment in time.

The reality is that while some businesses take the time to fully understand those issues on an ongoing basis, most will use the opportunity of the initial sales pitch to fact-find on their customers.

And then assume that those pain points elucidated at that point, never change.

It’s a relationship whereas the provider of goods or services, you ought to adopt the Green Cross Code: stop, look and listen. Oh, and drop the assumptions; treat each customer as a clean slate but never forget what you have been told previously.

Clarity is the byword to providing the solutions which will generate more revenue for yourself. If you understand them, you know where your business fits into the solution.

What are the five steps can you take to achieve this goal?

1.    Ask The Right Questions

It’s all very well sitting down with the customer and asking questions, but if they are the wrong questions, you achieve nothing. Make sure you are clear about what you want to achieve at the end of the process before starting.

Think of it as a route-planning exercise. You know the starting point and you know where you want to be; it’s up to you to make sure you plan the right route to get there.

2.    Listen

The theme of collaboration runs strong throughout this process but that can only work if you are prepared to listen. Key to this is not interrupting the customer’s train of thought as they divulge information to you. Follow-up questions can wait until a natural pause in the conversation.

Most casual conversations turn into a competition to see whose voice can be heard, irrespective of what is right or wrong. This is not casual; always listen, repeating points to indicate you’ve understood or are seeking clarity of an issue.

3.    Don’t Be Afraid

Too often in life, we hesitate when a bold step is required; fear kicks in. With this scenario of finding out customer pain, you cannot afford to be fearful at any step of the way.

When beginning the journey, you should already be confident of being able to provide a solution; just be open-minded what that solution is.

And certainly never be afraid to ask questions along the way. Clarity is the only way to understand how the solution will work.

4.    Collaboration

Never forget this is a collaborative process. The customer may find some therapeutic value in unburdening themselves over pressure points, but they will also be more confident of a solution being delivered if they have input into finding it.

And with the opportunities cloud technologies offer, there is no reason for not collaborating. Sharing information in a cost-effective and secure environment is the very essence of the cloud.

Allowing customer input saves time in the long run and protects the work itself. No need to worry that you are not in the office. Data, plans, documents and drawings can be accessed from anywhere at any time.

5.    Present A Clear Solution

At the end of the process, this is the answer customers want. A clear solution gives the customer the confidence that you listened throughout the entire process and noted their input into the solution.

The destination is reached by successful delivery of the solution and is key to customer retention and claiming repeat business in the

About the Author: Marc O'Dwyer

Marc is the CEO at Big Red Cloud, the easy to use online accounting software for micro, small and medium sized businesses. Having founded the company back in 2002 with the goal of helping companies to better manage their accounts, Marc also finds time to train and compete in Ironman and triathlon events in Ireland, the UK and across Europe.