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Marketing, customer satisfaction and loyalty
Satisfied customers will follow you everywhere
Competition forces traditional taxis to change : finally !
Dec12

Competition forces traditional taxis to change : finally !

The traditional press is full of articles regarding the legal procedures against Uber in Europe. In this judiciary fight, traditional taxis and VTC (Vehicule de Tourisme avec Chauffeur) have joined forces to fight Uber’s aggressive strategy to enter the market despite legal requirements (for more information read our previous article on this topic). Brussels minister for mobility was proud to announce that he had seized vehicles...

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Serving unfair customers: here’s what you should do
Dec08

Serving unfair customers: here’s what you should do

When a customer is unsatisfied, he/she sometimes engages in an interaction with the company to obtain redress. At that point frustration may combine to dissatisfaction and result in aggressiveness and outrageous behavior on the part of the customer. Marketing specialists are unanimous to say a firm should apologize and accept the responsibility. But doing so has also consequences for the employees. How would you feel, as a service...

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What are the mechanisms leading a consumer to be satisfied (or not)
Dec03

What are the mechanisms leading a consumer to be satisfied (or not)

Customer satisfaction is one of the main construct of modern marketing and an important pillar of firms’ strategies. Yet few business people actually understand how satisfaction works in the heads of their customers. Although it is still being debated experts agree on the process of expectancy disconfirmation to explain of customers become satisfied or unsatisfied.   What is the role of expectations in the customer satisfaction...

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Politeness matters: iOS 8 helps you to be polite
Dec03

Politeness matters: iOS 8 helps you to be polite

First of all my thanks to our client Florence for bringing this to our attention. A while ago I wrote with my colleague Laurence Rosier an article entitled “Politeness strategies in firms’ answers to customer complaints“. We made an argument that politeness strategies developed by firms help increase customer satisfaction and analyzed which leviers to activate to effectively make your unsatisfied customer more …...

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Complaint management: an example you should NOT follow
Nov26

Complaint management: an example you should NOT follow

As you may know our agency is working a lot on complaint handling and complaint management practices. Handling complaints well proves to be very rewarding in terms of customer satisfaction and loyalty. Make sure you listen to the podcast we recorded with Prof. Davidow in March 2020 on this topic. Prof. Davidow is one of the world’s most renown experts as far as complaint handling is concerned. To offer recommendations to...

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Retailing: fighting browsing shoppers is wrong. Here’s what you should do.
Nov21

Retailing: fighting browsing shoppers is wrong. Here’s what you should do.

Browser consumers are not new. Academic papers dating back to the 80’s are mentioning this behavior and called for researching it. posing what retailers consider being a great threat to their business. Today however they actually pose also the question of the survival of the brick-and-mortar retail sector vs. online retailing; browser consumers are visiting stores and then buying online, an option which didn’t obviously...

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Google Glass used by SNCF to enhance customer satisfaction
Nov17

Google Glass used by SNCF to enhance customer satisfaction

This article is primarily about the use of Google Glass to enhance the customer experience. But let me first start by dealing with the iWatch (sorry … it’s the Apple Watch). The long awaited Apple watch got finally revealed on Sept 9th. Despite the displayed enthusiasm at the conference, I must confess that I was disappointed. It’s not that the apple watch is ugly, or useless. It’s just that waiting so long had made me build some...

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Customer satisfaction for airlines : safety announcements made attractive
Oct31

Customer satisfaction for airlines : safety announcements made attractive

If you’ve travelled on a plane recently, you had to undergo a session of safety announcement before the plane took off. That’s a legal requirement. Most probably you’ve undergone a regular –boring- session of safety instructions that few passengers actually listen to. That part of the in-flight customer experience is, to say the least, not very satisfying and most probably will not be a trigger for you to remain loyal. Yet, some...

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How to transform a negative moment in a positive customer experience
Oct10

How to transform a negative moment in a positive customer experience

Today we wanted to finish the week on a positive and joyful note. Today’s post is inspired by KLM, the Dutch airline. There are many frustrating experiences that can happen when you travel by plane, and insatisfaction can arise for many different reasons. Loosing something in the airport, forgetting something on the plane (think about your keys, your smartphone) can lead to intense negative emotions. Fixing what one may see as a...

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Suit Supply has found a nice way to measure customer satisfaction
Oct06

Suit Supply has found a nice way to measure customer satisfaction

Customer Satisfaction surveys have been popular for decades; Yet the response rate to online surveys is very low if there is no reward. One of the major problem is the time required to answer the survey. People don’t have time. Marketing experts have proposed solutions in the form of one-item satisfaction instrument. In other words you get only one question to answer. The NPS (Net Promoter Score) is a good example of such instrument...

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Mistakes to avoid when measuring in-store satisfaction of customers
Sep03

Mistakes to avoid when measuring in-store satisfaction of customers

Measuring the satisfaction of customers in a point of sales has always been a challenge for retailers. Paper-and-pencil initiatives are usually launched to measure at a given moment, but until recently nothing was available to measure customer satisfaction continuously. Fortunately new devices were introduced on the market (look for instance this example of satisfaction measurement in Heathrow airport) that allow a simple measurement....

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Belfius : 95% of satisfied customers. A customer satisfaction survey that failed?
Jul16

Belfius : 95% of satisfied customers. A customer satisfaction survey that failed?

Belfius prides of targeting 95% of satisfied customers. This score is actually so high that it becomes suspicious. In today’s article we’ll investigate the three mistakes Belfius may make that would lead to misinterpreting the results. How did you define customer satisfaction ? The first question that arises immediately is whether or not the questions that were asked in the customer satisfaction survey were really relevant. Let’s have...

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La Minute Retail : the future of retail and the impact of digital technologies
Jul04

La Minute Retail : the future of retail and the impact of digital technologies

When you manage a blog about marketing you necessarily have to cover many different areas of interest. Retail is one of them. And what do you do to get new ideas, insights and keep up with the latest news in your field? You read others’ blogs. Laminuteretail belongs to my shortlist of blogs to follow. It was launched a little but more than a year ago by Anthony Leroy, a young and passionate marketing enthusiast living in Lille,...

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Customer satisfaction: BMW enables tracking of your order
Jul02

Customer satisfaction: BMW enables tracking of your order

A few days ago we were dealing with digital innovation in Brussels’ BMW Flagship store. BMW inspired us once again with an IT innovation proposed to customers ordering a new car. Ordering a car can be an amazing and joyful experience; accepting the delivery time can be much more frustrating especially with German cars which have long waiting lists. If you are an oversea customer this frustration is even higher as you know that you...

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Is the Net Promoter Score a reliable measure of customer satisfaction ?
Jun16

Is the Net Promoter Score a reliable measure of customer satisfaction ?

This article is also available in French The Net Promoter Score (NPS) is a 1-question scale introduced by Reichheld in 2003 that aims at measuring the propensity of customers to recommend a company (the famous word-of-mouth, also called WOM). This scale has encountered a fantastic success … because it’s extremely simple and quick to apply. Imagine how wonderful this customer satisfaction measurement instrument is: you ask just one...

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The top 3 reasons why customer satisfaction surveys fail
Apr30

The top 3 reasons why customer satisfaction surveys fail

In this post I’d like to remember the main reasons what your results to customer satisfaction surveys will not be representative. Eventually I’ll complete this post with another one: a reflection about Belfius’ advertised 95% customer satisfaction rate. 3 top reasons why customer satisfaction surveys fail One thing you should keep in mind of customer satisfaction survey is that the design of your questionnaire will very much influence...

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O2 and Deutsche Telekom create an innovative customer experience
Apr22

O2 and Deutsche Telekom create an innovative customer experience

Choosing a new smartphone, tablet or accessories can really be difficult for most customers. Not only does technology constantly evolve, but you won’t be allowed to actually touch, feel and try real devices in cell phone stores. The risk to get unsatisfied customers is high. Very high. This situation is just unbelievable. Customers about to buy a 500€ device must rely on not trustworthy sales guys and will discover when they are home...

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Uber banned: Brussels taxis remain up to 122% more expensive.
Apr15

Uber banned: Brussels taxis remain up to 122% more expensive.

On the website of the European Commission Neelie Kroes attacked publicly minister Brigitte Grouwels for the “crazy court decision to ban Uber in Brussels” (read more about Djump and UberPop business models in our article published a few days ago)  Consumers will keep paying high fares. But are prices of Brussels taxis really outrageously expensive ? The answer is in the article. Let’s start with Kroes’ words on...

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Djump and Uber banned by Belgian authorities… is Airbnb the next on the list ?
Mar31

Djump and Uber banned by Belgian authorities… is Airbnb the next on the list ?

For those of you following the news on the startup and IT scene, you may have heard that the Belgian government has forbidden Uber (link in French) to do business in Belgium and that the police even seized two cars (link to the article in French). Last week they went even further and asked Djump, a “ridesharing” platform, to stop immediately its activities. In today’s post we’ll think about what triggers such reactions...

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A call for a revolution in customers – firms relationships
Mar24

A call for a revolution in customers – firms relationships

You may remember the post published two ago about managing expectations to increase customer satisfaction. In that post I also mentioned a recent negative experience with Coolblue. The guys at Coolblue proved once again their professionalism by handling the complaint perfectly and actually increasing my loyalty even more. Here is how. The complaint handling paradox It’s probably been mentioned already here but I can’t repeat it...

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Luxury: shocking bad service and low customer satisfaction
Mar19

Luxury: shocking bad service and low customer satisfaction

Service quality is essential to increase customer satisfaction and loyalty. Personal encounters are crucial to increase the level of service; yet some brands in the luxury sector recruit employees that don’t master the codes of the sector which leads to a complete discrepancy and to dissatisfaction. Here is a true story that just happened to me and that involves Berluti, a brand of the LVMH group, and two other less known brands :...

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Increasing customer satisfaction through expectations management
Mar10

Increasing customer satisfaction through expectations management

Managing expectations is key to increase (or just ensure) customer satisfaction. In this article we explore bit the mechanism of expectation creation based on one actual example : Coolblue How do expectations influence customer satisfaction You’ve experienced already it : you purchased something on the internet. You’ve been waiting several days on the delivery and when it arrives, you unwrap the parcel and you’re disappointed by what...

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Dave Carroll: interview of a 12-million-view complaint champion
Jan17

Dave Carroll: interview of a 12-million-view complaint champion

Dave Carroll is known worldwide as the guy who paved the way for complaining in video. His famous “United breaks Guitars” video not only helped him resolve his complaint but it also scored more than 12 millions views on YouTube. This success empowered many to complain also. Dave’s story is so unique that it deserved getting its own Wikipedia page. We’ve dealt the whole week with complaining behavior and took the example of Kenny...

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Interview of Kenny Martineau, the million-viewer unsatisfied customer
Jan15

Interview of Kenny Martineau, the million-viewer unsatisfied customer

If you don’t know who Kenny Martineau is, may we kindly suggest you read this article first. IntoTheMinds: Kenny, what does “customer satisfaction” mean to you? Kenny Martineau: As far as the Crédit Mutuel is concerned I can’t really understand what it means to them. A bank is supposed to assist customers in their projects and help you overcome difficult times. Quite the opposite happened with my bank. ITM: As a consumer,...

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Videos are excellent (and effective ways) to complain
Jan13

Videos are excellent (and effective ways) to complain

In an earlier post we talked about David Carroll, a musician whose guitar was broken by United Airlines. The company proved very bad at managing his complaint and he found no other way than to compose a song (eventually seen by millions of people) to get his complaint addressed. It was shown to be effective (United Airlines compensated him) and seems to have inspired another complainant in France. If you want to learn more on...

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A nomad product enhancing customer satisfaction
Oct30

A nomad product enhancing customer satisfaction

In our post on Monday we promised to deal with a nomad object we recently discovered in France. If you read regularly our blog you know that we already touched this topic when we visited the flagship store of Bodum in Paris. One of Bodum’s best sellers is a fancy metal bottle you can carry with you and fill with whatever you like. We found better than that … A multi-purpose recipient Qwetch is a French startup created by Stéphane...

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Be responsive: a business strategy that works … if you apply it!
Oct09

Be responsive: a business strategy that works … if you apply it!

Here’s a true story that many of you have already experienced and which resulted in a incredible feeling of frustration. It’s the story about looking for a company to provide a service or a product you need. Sending a request for appointment to all the biggest banks My story begins with the quest for a new bank; a bank that could host my private as well as professional accounts. The bank I’ve been with for 10 years now is not...

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Will Ryanair really improve service quality to satisfy its customers?
Oct02

Will Ryanair really improve service quality to satisfy its customers?

Michael O’Leary, the arrogant yet charismatic CEO of Ryanair, announced last week that the company would strive to improve customer service. “We should try to eliminate things that unnecessarily piss people off” and “A lot of those customer services elements don’t cost a lot of money … It’s something we are committed to addressing over the coming year,” O’Leary said on Sept 20th 2013. Market...

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« Clic and walk » reinvents the customer satisfaction survey
Sep20

« Clic and walk » reinvents the customer satisfaction survey

The social media rise has launched a new era in customer satisfaction measurement; twitter, Facebook and the like have allowed marketers to collect more primary data to evaluate whether clients were satisfied or not. Yet the multiplicity of sources makes it difficult (not to say impossible) to properly analyze this data. Before even being able to analyze anything one has to select the relevant data. This selection process is a...

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Customer satisfaction and the attention for details
Sep16

Customer satisfaction and the attention for details

It is well known that the devil is in the detail. The attention to details in the product and service development is indeed an evidence of quality and dedication to customer satisfaction. It is therefore not a surprise that satisfaction surveys constantly show that those details allow to rank high in terms of satisfaction which, as you know, enables to foster loyalty. I’m therefore very sensitive to efforts made to work on details...

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How a postcard can create high customer satisfaction
Sep06

How a postcard can create high customer satisfaction

We promised in an earlier post to deal with one example of how a company can increase its customers’ satisfaction and loyalty by paying attention to details. This example is inspired by Werner Bruyns, the CEO of Coolblue whom I met at a bpost event earlier this year. After the event I browsed the Coolblue website and found out that the promises made (and the prices) were pretty attractive. I ordered a few stuffs (all the promises were...

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BNP Paribas Fortis: how their hotline make them lose customers
Sep04

BNP Paribas Fortis: how their hotline make them lose customers

Websites have become nowadays a tool to attract and retain potential customers. They either allow the visitors to perform certain actions by themselves or get a trigger to call an agent. This mechanism is especially important in B2C transactions where customers want immediate contact. The role of hotlines is therefore to make the customer acquisition process as smooth as possible to increase the acquisition rate and retain as many...

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Some innovating ideas around customer satisfaction and loyalty
Jun28

Some innovating ideas around customer satisfaction and loyalty

I recently attended an internal BPost event where externals speakers went to give a speech and inspire the audience. This  event had been organized at the initiative of BPost COO Peter Somers and it was a great opportunity to better understand the strategy of the group as it was explained to investors during the pre-IPO phase (which has been a big success by the way). Two speakers had been invited: Google Belgium CEO Thierry Geerts...

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Measuring customer satisfaction: the practices of large corporations and SMEs in review
Jun10

Measuring customer satisfaction: the practices of large corporations and SMEs in review

Customer satisfaction measurement is a much debated topic. In this article we claim that measuring the satisfaction of its customers may not be useful for SMEs. Here’s why. For many firms the measuring their customers’ satisfaction level has become an end in itself which keeps people in the marketing department busy and has generated a whole industry dedicated to software for the design and the administration or satisfaction...

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Avoid biased results when measuring customer satisfaction
Jun07

Avoid biased results when measuring customer satisfaction

Measuring satisfaction of clients is a widespread practice among large companies as we showed in an earlier post. A new practice is however to link employees’ salaries to customer satisfaction scores. We’ve had the opportunity to witness this practice in two large automotive retail groups in Belgium last month. In one of them we also witnessed what kind of excesses this practice may lead to.   An example of well-implement...

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If you care about customer satisfaction, pay attention to politeness when answering customer complaints
May31

If you care about customer satisfaction, pay attention to politeness when answering customer complaints

We’ve finally completed our research on what companies should do to increase the level of politeness when answering a customer complaints. Answering complaints well is essential to maintain customer satisfaction levels. The results of this research will be presented at the next EMAC (European Marketing Academy Conference) that will be held in Istanbul in early June.   The results in a nutshell Our research shows that using common...

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