A previous blog commented on the importance of listening skills in choosing a consultant. Not surprisingly, listening is also important to successful business as a whole. As a business owner or executive, how and how well you listen has a direct impact on how the execution of those decisions and plans will actually benefit your company’s particular definition of the “bottom line.”
Which brings us around to customer touchpoints, succinctly described in this article: “Touchpoints Bring the Customer Experience to Life” (well worth reading for a nuanced overview of an oft-confused topic).
Distinct types of listening are required for varying choices, required actions, desired outcomes … and target markets, of course. Yet, one overarching goal silhouettes all these items: profit.
Regardless of size, companies not making profits can’t invest in themselves. Say a business is just breaking even and can only pay employees … in that eventuality, how can it continue looking for ways to develop customer relationships? The answer is, it won’t – such a business will stagnate and fail. Likewise, if an organization overspends before the identified target audience or customer set (i.e. who the company thinks it is serving) finds and embraces the value proposition, the company will run out of money and shut down.
Now let’s circle back to customer touchpoints and listening, which both (not surprisingly) represent a BIG piece of the profit pie. As mentioned above, the how in listening is important; perhaps of even greater significance is how well you understand:
- That what you’re saying is actually what people want; and
- That people are actually using the product/service like we think they are.
A comprehensive grasp of these two concepts represents a huge opportunity for development, longevity and repeat customers that will create amazing processes which create feedback loops involving all the concepts discussed in this article.
To successfully employ customer touchpoints, then, focus on improving your skills to effectively cultivate and utilize listening posts and the resultant feedback loops. Doing so will enhance and strengthen business in the short and long term.
What is your business experience regarding the interrelationship between listening, profit, customer touchpoints and feedback loops? Please share your thoughts in the comment section!