Better Marketing Results with Customer Involvement

March 11, 2009 at 5:00 pm Leave a comment

unhappy-customer

In the newspaper this morning there was a story that Telstra (our largest Telco) is changing the way they charge for STD and overseas calls.

They used to charge by the second and now it will be in 30 second block. This means that if you get through to a voicemail and have been on the phone 10 seconds you will still be charged for 30seconds. It is estimated that this change will affect millions of people.

Naturally there were negative comments on blogs and on Twitter alone there were over 45 negative comments this morning since the news broke.

The company explained why they were making the changes and a number of people have remarked that they are or were going to change to just using their mobile or VoIP. However it should be noted that they are many older Australians who like using the landline phone and they are unlikely to change their habits.

Throughout the story it did not say if there had been any consultation with their loyal customers or even any research to gauge the impact of this decision from their customers’ point of view.

So how does this relate small business marketing?

Everything you do in business involves marketing in one way or another and all decisions affect your relationship with your customer. Whilst a decision may be financially beneficially for a company it is the impact on your customers that is important. If you involve your customers, you may actually find a better solution to an issue.

A business change today with little consultation, for example the way you deliver your service can leave a lasting impression. Apart from losing customers, it can also harm the effectiveness of future marketing campaigns or new product or service launches.

Today positive and negative stories circulate very quickly and I wonder just how many of the people affected have discussed the Telstra decision and its impact with others.

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Entry filed under: Customer Relationships. Tags: , , , , .

How Important are your Customers? Building Quality Relationships

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Susan

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