What We Should Be Asking Clients

By Andrew Paparozzi
In March 13, 2016

We talk to our clients all the time and visit them regularly. We conduct client surveys and run open houses and other events to get to know them better. We ask plenty of questions. But are we asking the right questions?

That’s the subject of a pair of insightful posts I read recently: “5 Questions You Should Ask Every Customer,” by John Jantsch, and “10 Questions to Ask Your Customers,” by Rodrigo Fuentes. Among the must-asks that make one or both lists:

  • What’s one thing we do better than others you do business with? We think we know already. But what clients think may be very different from what we think. Listen carefully for themes. And use what we learn to, as Jantsch puts it, identify a “true differentiator” that can be our “core marketing message.”
  • What do our competitors do better than us? Again, let’s not assume we know. Let’s verify by asking the people whose opinions matters most—our clients. We’ll learn about the competitions’ strengthens and our weaknesses. We can then move aggressively to close the gap.
  • How would you find a business like ours on Google? What key words and phrases are customers using? It’s unlikely they’re the words, phrases, and jargon we believe they use. “This is the new lead generation question,” according to Jantsch, “but understanding what it implies is very important. If you want to get very, very good at being found online, around the world or around the town, you have to know everything you can about the actual terms and phrases your customers use when they go looking for companies like yours.”

More must-asks are listed in the Epicomm State of the Industry Spring 2016 Update we recently published. The Update also discusses the Customer Effort Score, a key predictor of client retention. Members will be receiving their complimentary copy soon. Non-members can order a copy at www.epicomm.org.

Andrew Paparozzi

Epicomm's Andrew Paparozzi, Vice President/Chief Economist, is well-known for his accurate and thoughtful discussions on the economy and US commercial printing industry. A foremost author and speaker on economic business trends in the printing industry, Paparozzi heads Epicomm's Printing Economic Research Center.

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