We always talk about the importance of listening to your customer, have good follow-up strategies, keep a relationship and a conversation going with customers.
So sometimes, people get the wrong impression that this is the same as saying the customer is always right and that they have all final decisions. From how your business processes should be, to when they should pay you. Believe me, to understand this relationship is not only good for business, it is part of marketing too.
Have in mind that you as the business owner decide how to run your business, not the customer.
I found this blog post at Duct Tape marketing that I think explains this right:
“There is absolutely nothing wrong, in fact there’s everything right, with building a culture of making the customer thrilled at every turn, but you can’t adopt the mentality without two things firmly in place first.
1) You must absolutely set up every communication with the goal of attracting the ideal customer – ideal is a customer that values what you have to offer, values how you offer it, and determines that value is a mutual exchange of such – very much like any healthy relationship. Bad relationships come from misunderstanding yourself and what you really have to offer and the same might be said for attracting customers for the wrong reasons.
2) You must build an experience that does indeed thrill at every turn – from lead generation to getting paid.
With those two qualifications in place you can allow the customer to always be right, because you’ve designed a culture of mutual benefit and your “we won’t rest until its right” policy will serve both of you long term. Small businesses simply can’t afford to attract the wrong kind of life robbing customer and expect to make them thrilled, it’s a nearly impossible task and will be accomplished likely to the detriment of your ideal customers.”
So, repeat after me, the right customer is always right – with that mindset the accountability shifts from the customer to you.