I found myself pondering this question this month as I waited for a gas fireplace repair part to arrive. The technician that diagnosed the problem ordered the required part and advised it would take 2 weeks to arrive. Two weeks passed and then 3 weeks with no follow-up call to advise of a delay or new eta for the part.
My call to the office resulted in a promise to get right back to me with an update - a week later and still no call back. I start to feel like I'm a pest or inconvenience to the service provider as the pleasant receptionist keeps passing my weekly messages to no effect.
I consider starting again with a new repair company but I have the suspicion that, like many home repair trades, the service might be no different elsewhere.
So the original company gets my patience and loyalty by default - I think they all give the same disappointing service so what's the point of changing?
Finally after 6 weeks of waiting with a fireplace out of commission, I get angry with the company and demand to speak to the owner. Surprise! The part had arrived two days ago and now I get the awesome service of being able to select any time next week for installation.
- Loyalty by default occurs in our industry as well. People might assume the customer experience is no better anywhere else, so they put up with being only somewhat satisfied.
- Loyalty by default relies on your competitors being just as unremarkable as you.
- Loyalty by default is very weak and easily lost.
- Loyalty by design means you pro-actively try to prove that you are noticeably better that everyone else.
- Loyalty by design is earned based on your specific actions and the value you bring.
So which will you choose, loyalty by default or loyalty by design?
"Customer satisfaction is worthless, customer loyalty is priceless."
- Jeffrey Gitomer