Happy Customer, Happy You: Three steps for improving your franchise's customer service.

Author:Kuhn, Kathleen
 
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The power of a brand is largely built on awareness and reputation, both of which can be won or lost by customer satisfaction. Long gone are the days where franchisors could rely on initial training and the occasional site visit or check-in with a franchise location to ensure they are meeting brand standards and exceeding customer expectations.

Consumers today are empowered with an ability to share their negative customer experience with your brand with a large and social audience. The ramifications can have an impact not only on the location where the customer was served, but throughout the brand. So, what's a franchise brand to do? Here are three practical steps to take to closely monitor and improve the customer service experience.

Step 1

MEASURE YOUR CUSTOMERS' SATISFACTION LEVELS

The business adage "what cannot be measured cannot be managed" holds true when it comes to customer feedback. Fortunately, there are many tools that brands can employ to measure customer satisfaction and address an unhappy customer experience before it escalates.

As the president of a national home inspection organization, ensuring our customers are happy is not only paramount to our success, it's critical to company growth and reducing liability. Our customers are always in a state of stress when using our service, as a high percentage are in the process of buying or selling a home. Whether they are moving in or out, it's always a stressful situation. Not to mention, there is a lot at stake; buying a home is often the largest investment anyone will ever make. Add to that the fact that hundreds of different elements are evaluated within every home and all the parties in the transaction have differing motivations. There is a lot going on with every inspection, so customer experience must be stellar.

To this end, we employ a third-party Net Promoter Score (NPS) system that encourages all our customers and the representative they work with to rate their experience. We track these results across our 300-plus franchise locations very closely. Before doing anything further in the customer service department, make sure you are monitoring your customer's experience so that you have hard evidence of how well you're doing as a franchise system.

Step 2

SHARE CUSTOMER SERVICE DATA FINDINGS WITH THE ENTIRE SYSTEM

Step two is equally important: Share what the data is telling you throughout your system. HouseMaster's NPS data has become a powerful tool to reinforce brand...

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