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Customer Service: 9 ways to go from zero to hero in no time

While you may want to continue bringing in new customers, your success is greatly determined by your ability to increase your repeat customers.

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Customer, business, Polarization: How, attract, right, customers, ‘’wrong’,’ ones, out, A guide to identifying your profitable customers and improving your sales (1), customers, Customer Service: 9 ways to go from zero to hero in no time, How to implement customer feedback that will skyrocket your business growth

Quick facts

  • Most customers aren’t loyal.
  • Majority of first-time customers are in the process of fulfilling particular needs and are not interested in long-term engaging relationships with a brand.
  • Returning customers are far more profitable than newly acquired customers.
  • It is easier and more cost-effective to sell to an existing customer than to find a new one.
  • Marketing Metrics explains that you are 50% more likely to sell to an existing customer than a new one. In fact, marketing to a new customer is nearly seven times as expensive as maintaining an existing customer.

What these tell us is that while you may want to continue bringing in new customers, your success is greatly determined by your ability to increase your repeat customers. On average, your loyal customers are worth up to 10 times as much as their first purchase. Long-term, profitable customer relationships do not happen overnight which is why it is important to continue nurturing the relationship after the initial win. By investing in customer retention from the start, you can dramatically grow your bottom line while transforming one-time buyers into committed brand enthusiasts. Your customers should not feel the need to move away to your competitor because they found your customer care operators to be inefficient or your support mechanism to be weak.

Must-have customer service skills that every business needs, How your business can provide superior customer support during the holiday season (Part 1), How your business can provide superior customer support during the holiday season (Part 1)

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What tactics do you then employ to engage your customers and drive them back to your product/services after every purchase?

Your Social Media Channels

Social media is one of the best tools you can use to communicate and engage with your customers and loyal advocates. How do you ensure that you drive customer retention via social media?

Post-user-generated content: Your social media followers do not want to see your perfectly staged product photos all the time—they want to see your products being used in real-life. One of the best ways to remind customers how great your products are, is by encouraging everyone who buys from you to share photos of themselves using your products on your social media pages.

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Hire the right person

The fact is, some people are better at customer-facing roles than others. They are born with a talent with which they naturally communicate well with customers. You can train, you can practice, you can instil culture, but some people just have it in them. Look for it during the hiring process, and continue nurturing it through every moment that employee spends in your organization.

[READ MORE: 10 ways to maximize holiday sales and engage your customers)

Communicate Effectively

Loopholes in the customer service arena are based on the fundamental ability to communicate effectively. Investing in training here is a no-brainer, but that applies to all staff working who deal with customers directly, and not just CSMs. Effective communication implies sharpening verbal communication and listening skills. Let us have a look at the three core principles:

  • Make it simple: Don’t utilize solutions that are long-winded and unnecessarily complex.
  • Make it effective: It’s not good enough just trying to help; you need to provide the solutions that truly help.
  • Make it honest: Stick to the core organizational values at all times.

Keep refining your product or service

The awesome thing about customer service is that it also serves as your research and development arm. By interacting with your customers, you learn exactly what people are looking for and what concerns them. This should not be taken for granted. Diligently take note of the concerns of the customers and improve your product or service based on the customers’ pain points. Ensure you also give your customers a call back if any of their product concerns have been resolved. This will make them feel that you care.

Include data-driven recommendations in transactional emails

Transactional emails are triggered by a specific action, like completing a purchase, registering for an event, or signing up for a free trial. In this case, we’re recommending that you include data-driven product recommendations in the email you send to confirm a customer’s order. Say your customer ordered a pair of earrings. By including three top-selling pairs of earrings at the bottom of their order confirmation, you nudge them to make another purchase right away.

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Encourage upsell and cross-sell with personalized product recommendations

Product recommendation emails differ from transactional emails in that they’re sent proactively. That is, instead of waiting for the customer to browse your website, you nudge them to buy by sending a carefully curated selection of products straight to their inboxes. Basing these recommendations on their purchase history will increase your chance of making the sale.

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Reward customers for desired behaviours

One sure-fire way to build customer loyalty is to reward customers for engaging in behaviours that help grow your business. For example:

  • Making a purchase
  • Following your brand on social media
  • Sharing product pages with friends and family
  • Publishing product reviews
  • Spreading positive word of mouth online

Must-have customer service skills that every business needs

Use customer care emails to build brand affinity

Customer care emails are effective and free ways to build goodwill. Here are a few ideas to stimulate your imagination:

  • Celebrate customer milestones. Has your customer crossed an activity milestone? Have they spent a certain amount of money? Have they repeated buyers for certain periods of time? These are all occasions you should celebrate.
  • Wish customers a happy birthday. Recognising moments that matter to your customers helps you build a relationship with them.
  • Show a bit of gratitude. Saying thank you after every purchase demonstrates that you value their business. This simple two-word message can go a long way in earning your customer’s respect.

[READ ALSO: A guide to identifying your profitable customers and improving your sales (1)]

Offer refreshments

Invest in a nice water or coffee system. Place it where customers can easily find it and serve themselves while they wait or prepare for their meetings.

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These are not hard and fast rules. Ultimately, what you sell has a huge impact on which strategy you should focus on. Stay customer-centric!

 

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Business

LIRS further extends deadline for filing annual tax returns by one month

“We constantly debated what other measures could be taken as an organization to support individuals and businesses at this time, hence, the additional one-month extension from June 1, to June 30, 2020.” – Ayodele Subair

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LIRS further extends deadline for filing annual return by one month

The Lagos State Internal Revenue Service (LIRS) has again extended the deadline for filing of Annual Tax Returns from May 31 2020 to June 30, 2020.

This is part of the state government’s effort to provide relief to taxpayers in light of the economic impact of the Covid-19 pandemic. With this development, annual returns for individuals, both employees and self-employed persons, can be filed anytime before June 30, 2020.

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In a press release signed by Monsurat Amasa, the head of LIRS’ Corporate Communications Department, the agency urged taxpayers to take advantage of the magnanimity of the government and file their returns. The LIRS’ Executive Chairman, Mr. Ayodele Subair, explained the extension thus:

“As the Lagos State Government keeps abreast of global best practices in containing the Covid-19 pandemic and eases the effects of an economic downturn on taxpayers and residents of the State, LIRS had initially extended the deadline for filing annual tax returns for two months, from the statutory March 31st of every fiscal year to May 31, 2020.  

“We constantly debated what other measures could be taken as an organization to support individuals and businesses at this time, hence, the additional one-month extension from June 1, to June 30, 2020.”

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(READ MORE: COVID-19: Lagos issues new guidelines, considers full reopening of economy)

He further explained that taxpayers can file the annual returns from the comfort of their homes and offices using the LIRS eTax platforms. They can also generate assessment and payment schedule, and other tax administration matters on the same platform. Updates on business operations and alternative payment platforms are to be found on the verified handles, and the LIRS website.

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Business

Where to invest in May

Post-COVID-19 lockdown, Nigerians need to send their money on the right errands in May 2019, if they will not be caught napping the expected recession.  

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Money

This May, post-COVID-19 lockdown, Nigerians need to send their money on the right errands, if they don’t want to be caught napping during the anticipated recession.

When listing out assets that should make up the ideal portfolio in May 2020, founder of Nairametrics, Ugochukwu “Ugodre” Obi-Chukwu, explained that investors should consider choice stocks in the Nigerian and foreign stock exchanges, as well as investments in money market instruments where some decent profits can be made.

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Ugodre said this during the maiden edition of the Nairametrics Monthly Investment Guide Webinar.

According to him, this will also be the time to look into Agri-Tech investments, using crowdsourcing platforms, after which you can sit back and watch your funds grow over a time span of 5 months to a year.

According to him, it is also important to invest in foreign currencies and crypto-currencies to balance one’s portfolios.

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He noted that foreign direct investments have reduced over the last couple of years due to reduced trust in Nigeria’s economic policies, and the desire of foreign investors to cash out their funds with ease. This also explains why portfolio investments grew by 38% in 2019.

He said, “Foreign investors love portfolio investments because when they put their money in, they can easily take it out as well.”

(READ MORE:   CrowdFunding: Who is qualified according to new SEC Guidelines)

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Finding the right stocks

On the stock market, he noted that quite some stocks improved in the month of April and could improve in the coming months. He listed 20 suggested shares, including six stocks which he described as COVID-19 proof.

Agritech,Errands you can send your money in May 2020  

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Dangote Sugar Refinery, May & Baker Nigeria Plc, GSK, Neimeth International Pharm, Nestle Nigeria, and Cadbury Nigeria Plc are fast-moving consumer goods companies that are expected to be resistant to pressure from the pandemic.

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He advised investors to track stocks that are liquid, have good financials and good corporate governance, in order to limit risks borne by investors. Valuation of the shares, he said, could be done by comparing stock value and earnings per share.

Working around cryptocurrency volatility 

While making a presentation on “Why Bitcoin should be in your portfolio,” Yele Badamosi, CEO of Bundle stated that foremost cryptocurrency, Bitcoin, had maintained a steady appreciation over the last decade giving investors high yields.

Although the market is highly speculative and unregulated, its high returns and high risk indicate that investors with high-risk appetites could find the market more attractive.

To avoid being on the wrong side, he advised users to consider time-based rebalancing, or tolerance rebalancing to reduce risks and rebalance one’s portfolio.

(READ MORE: AfCFTA delay: A bane to Africa’s $3.4 trillion economic bloc)

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“There are reputable people in the space, but it is important to do your research, start small, and buy regularly. Be wary of get-rich-schemes and unrealistic guaranteed returns,” he advised.  cryptocurrency,Cryptocurrencies and its usage in Africa, Errands you can send your money in May 2020  

 

With applications like Bundle Africa on Google Play Store, buying cryptocurrencies is as easy as selecting the buy button and having it saved in your bundle wallet.

What to expect in Q2 2020

According to Wale, an economist, who also spoke at the webinar, the demand for crude oil will remain low as several countries and businesses are still in lockdown, even though OPEC has cut down production.

Interest rates may remain low, though, despite this, Nigerian business entrepreneurs cannot expect single-digit interest rates.

Foreign reserve and government reserves will remain under pressure in the coming months. The World Bank says that this is the worst year so far, going back to the great depression and this is what I think as well. This is probably going to be the worst economic crisis we have seen,” Wale said.

He added that with the exception of industries in the Healthcare sector, telco companies, digital technology companies, and food producers, other sectors could very well expect a big hit.

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Business

Why risk your life when you can bank with V by VFD (VBank or V)

Unlike other apps that are laced with either unbidden and hidden charges, V is free, as there are no charges for customers whether they are transferring money to another customer of V or another bank.

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VFD MFB closes gap with bank customers, launches new app, Why risk your life when you can bank with V by VFD (VBank or V)

The recent lifting of the lockdown has seen Nigerians rush to the banks to execute banking transactions that they have missed in the last five weeks.

Saying that this action or mis-action contravenes the physical distancing preached by the health agencies and government, is only stating the obvious. By doing this, they endanger themselves, and other family members whom they return to after their day at the bank.
But what if it was possible to do all your banking from your phone?

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V to the rescue
V disrupted the banking industry when earlier this year, it launched a highly optimized virtual bank app that enables users to carry out all banking transactions with ease and from their phones.
Users are able to create and set up a bank account with the app within 5 minutes and start carrying out transactions immediately.
Of course it doesn’t matter if you already have an account with the traditional banks. There’s always room for pleasant disruptions, aren’t there?

What they offer
VBank was launched as Nigeria’s first fully virtual bank to close the gap which hitherto existed between established traditional banks and their customers. That means there are no barriers between the bank and its teeming customers and potential customers.
Unlike other apps that are laced with either unbidden and hidden charges, V is free, as there are no charges for customers whether they are transferring money to another customer of V or another bank.

(READ MORE: VFD Group meets nutritional needs of residents of Olowogbowo community)

According to Azubike Emodi, MD/CEO, VFD Microfinance Bank, experts behind V are taking a consumer-centric approach with an aggressive feedback collection mechanism to build an app that meets the objectives of the customer.
The app, which is available for download on App store and google playstore allows users to monitor expenses and income, categorize budgets, and set spending limits. V is available to download by searching for “V by VFD” on App Store and Google Play store.

Why risk your life when you can bank with V by VFD (VBank or V)
What else could one ask for in a bank?
Another landmark feature of V is referral functionality (Veelage), which is also connected to monthly financial reward. It allows interested users of V to earn income and advance though the V community simply by getting account holders signed up with a unique ID and maintaining an average balance.

About this unique feature, Olukunle Salami, Business Performance Manager, VFD Group Plc would say that It is a 2-way value proposition that ensures individuals can earn consistently for several months beyond the initial referral point.

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Whoever guessed that we could earn from our bank?

 

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