Connections: The Voice of the Customer Round-Up

Connections is your resource for agency/brokerage improvement ideas, and the number one way you can instantly improve is by listening to your valued clients. See below for excerpts from Connections articles that pertain to listening to the voice of the customer.

Log in to the Connections website using your Applied Client Network website credentials to access this month’s content, as well as plenty of archived material to suit your professional needs. Bookmark Connections  for ease — new insights arrive weekly!

The Voice of the Customer

The_Voice_of_the_Customer

You may know more about insurance than the majority of your customers, but the truth is always the same: The customer knows best. They’re experts on their own preferences, and that is the kind of information you need for success in today’s competitive marketplace.

This article will detail a few ways in which you can improve your own relationships with your customers to retain their business, potentially encourage referrals and establish the kind of reputation that draws in new customers.

Clear Communication

Gone are the days when communication was handled face to face, or even voice to voice. Customers today value choice — they want to be able to reach you however they feel like communicating that day. The more options you can offer them, the better for you. The 2014 EY Global Consumer Insurance Survey outlines the various preferences customers hold for communication:

  • 48 percent of survey respondents said they would consider using a 24-hour telephone hotline;
  • 41 percent would consider using email; and
  • 40 percent would consider using a web chat feature.

At the very least, it’s in your best interest to offer three to four communication channel options. Now more than ever before, variety is the spice of life.

To see more ways in which you can improve your client relationships, log in to Connections.

Soliciting Feedback: How and What to Ask

Soliciting_Client_Feedback

Applied Client Network agency/brokerage professionals need to be in sync with customer wants and needs. You may "think" you know what your customers want, but the only way to be sure is to ask. And then ask again. And then again.

Why Ask?

A recent Applied Systems success story provides one example. Matt Foran, vice president and general manager of IVANS Market Appetite, explains how the IVANS Index came about in a recent blog on the Applied Systems website.

"The IVANS team asked agents and insurers, 'What insight is missing in the industry that you truly need to better run your business and serve your clients?' The resounding response was policy renewal pricing guidance."

Could Foran and Applied Systems have anticipated that need without soliciting feedback? Maybe. But armed with the information provided by their customers, they were 100 percent certain of what their next move must be to stay in step with their customers. They asked for honest feedback, and then they acted upon the feedback received.

This falls in line with what the customer experience experts at Help Scout identify as key elements to consider before beginning: 

  • What part of the user experience do you want to improve?
  • What will you do with the data you collect?
  • Which channel works best for your goals?

All three must be first strategized and then executed effectively to obtain actionable input. “A fierce commitment to gathering, organizing and sharing customer feedback plays an important role in pushing your product and business forward,” concludes Help Scout.

To read more about the client feedback solicitation process, log in to Connections.

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