Monday, February 14, 2011

An Interesting Thought Model for Loyalty

I ran across an interesting model for loyalty that makes sense. I am not sure how I would apply metrics to the model but intuitively I like it. It's one of those models that feels good in your gut. The model consists of three components. I am not sure that each component gets equal weight - but that really doesn't matter until we define the metrics.

The three components of the model are:
1. Ability - in order to develop loyalty one must have the ability to provide the product or service. Of course the quality must be adequate for the product and/or service.
2. Integrity - the provider must maintain a high level of integrity. This means the product/service must be provided with honesty and consistently offered on a morale and ethical base.
3. Personal Concern - the provider should show concern for the customer in a personal way. This is nothing more than building a relationship with the customer and showing specific concern for the individual customer.

Most loyalty models seem to focus on one or more of the three questions; namely, overall satisfaction, willingness to repurchase and willingness to recommend. The surveys often will focus on ability of the organization and sometimes will examine the integrity of the business relationship.

The beauty of this model, albeit its shortcoming of not having a clear set of metrics, is the addition of the personal concern component. One of the most often cited concerns of customers is what I refer to as the "big company syndrome". The company providing the product and/or service is too big to be concerned about me. That "me" might be a clerk in a very large organization whose job function is to recommend particular suppliers and yet gets a feeling that the people he/she deals with have no personal concern for him/her. The point I am making here is that the feeling that I am not important can be coming from within a large company just as well as an individual customer.

The bottom line is that most of our loyalty models today focus on ability and integrity but often ignore the personal concern which is one of the three building blocks of loyalty. it is time to add the personal concern factor into our loyalty metrics.

The next blog will focus on how to build the person concern into your strategy.

1 comment:

Jan said...

Interesting comments on 'personal concern'. We've recently added a question to some of our service follow-up surveys regarding 'the concern of the person that helped you with a tech support problem'. It's too early to tell, but it will be interesting to see in a few months how this tracks with other loyalty measures. Maybe it should become a standard question for service follow-up that will tell as much or more than other loyalty questions that have become standard?


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