Thursday, March 17, 2011

Loyalty Begins with "T"

While The Customer Institute continues to seek quality research in the areas of customer satisfaction and loyalty, there are times when a little diversion may lead to some new ideas on the subjects. This blog will focus on a different concept for customer loyalty; namely, looking at a business process that might provide a path to customer loyalty.

The process is one that we often use and may not be aware that such a process can be accurately labeled. The concept is that there are three Ts that often lead to better relationships.

The first T is transparency. By transparency we mean that there are no secrets between the customer and the company. The company (and all the best salespeople) make sure that the customer is completely aware of all the facets of the relationship.

The second T is trust. As the customer and the company become aware of the completeness of the transparency, trust follows. It is very difficult to build trust between a company and its customers if there is no transparency. Without transparency, there is always a lingering doubt about the true relationship. (This is not being offered as a guide to personal relationships between two individuals).

The third T is truth. With knowledge of complete transparency and trust, both the company and the customer are usually willing to tell the truth. The likelihood of getting the truth without these previous conditions (transparency and trust), is small.

The bottom line is loyalty does not come quickly nor should it. Loyalty often implies a sharing relationship. These three Ts appear to offer such a foundation for a strong relationship which could become the basis of the sharing relationship that will lead to loyalty.

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