Wooing customers in the age of apps and social media

In an age when consumers can switch to your competitor at the tap of a finger, nailing your service is the key to keeping the cash coming in

Wooing customers in the age of apps and social media

The customer is always right. You’ve heard this a thousand times but it’s never been more pertinent than it is right now. In this new digital age, getting the service right is critical to your company. Thanks largely to the continuing growth of social media and large-scale review services such as Trustpilot, it’s never been more important that customers get the service they want in the time and place they expect.

Being the CEO of an on-demand dry cleaning and laundry app, I know this first-hand. In my experience, putting the customer first is more important in laundry than it is in any other business because it’s an immensely personal service that requires a lot of trust. It’s also an industry steeped in tradition and personal relationships, where trust is the central foundation to building a lasting and loyal customer base.

We’ve taken the traditional bricks and mortar model into the digital age, replacing the face-to-face element with an app. Thankfully, rapidly growing on-demand apps such as Uber and Deliveroo have built large-scale awareness and paved the way for other services delivered directly through an app – otherwise this would be an impossible challenge.

Building loyalty and trust in a digital age with a digital product is clearly tough. But even tougher is managing the expectations of an increasingly switched-on audience that is ready to switch at the tap of a button to your closest competitor. The adage ‘you’re only as good as your last order’ has never been truer, partly because it’s never been easier to switch services.

Jeff Bezos, founder and CEO of Amazon, was once quoted as saying: “If you make customers unhappy in the physical world, they might each tell six friends. If you make customers unhappy on the internet, they can each tell 6,000 friends.” Today, thanks largely to the growth of mobile and the prominence of reviews within the App Store and Google Play store, providing a quality product and service is imperative in ensuring you retain prominence in the only shop window you have.

At no other time in the history of business has over-promising and over-delivering been more important. The idea ‘focus on the service and profit will follow’ is an increasingly important approach, as apps and services claw desperately to keep their loyal customers engaged and away from competitors. With over 1.5 million apps on the App Store and the average smartphone user having approximately 50 apps on their devices, the customer has never been more powerful. They can make or break your business like never before.

The old adage that the customer is king has never been more relevant but in this new and emerging digital age the customer is not only king – they’re also a king-maker.

Edward Relf
Edward Relf

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