Showing posts with label #CXinGhana. Show all posts
Showing posts with label #CXinGhana. Show all posts

Wednesday, June 21, 2017

How my mum sustains Customer Experience (CX)?

Snapshot of my mum's charcoal table
For as long as I can remember, my mother's charcoal business has helped in seeing my siblings and me, through school. It's a family business we are proud of. I have wondered how she's sustained her customers over the years. Here are some strategies she's applied to retain and grow her customer base, while ensuring they are satisfied with the product and her services:

Make sure the product is always available
One evening, I sold the last charcoal on the table, and wondered when my mum would be able to travel to Mamfe or any of the charcoal-producing towns in Ghana to buy more sacks. The following day, she went to the Tema Kwasiadjoaso and returned with five sacks of charcoal. She had actually gone for it so she sells it for the market lady. I was disappointed and didn't understand why she did that, more so when I realised she didn't make any profit on them. She noticed my displeasure and explained that the move was meant to retain her customers. Imagine what will happen when they come to buy charcoal and she has none -- she'll lose them to her competition. She jokingly asked, "If I lose them, and I am finally able to travel and buy my own stock, would I go round door-to-door or with a gong and ask my customers to come buy charcoal from me?"

Respect and Cherish your customers
Every morning, I observed my mother interact with customers while she packs the charcoal on her table. A couple of these customers were very punctual as they came to our home earlier than my mother began her work. I observed how they shared family issues and the interest my mother took in their lives, sharing in their joys and sorrows. The relationships grew from business to personal ones. This was good for business as referrals came in. On our part as her children and 'employees', we were made to understand what a smile can do to enhance the customer experience. We learnt to be fair but firm with the customers as some took our business for granted and may buy on credit and never pay. There were times some customers came to buy the charcoal in very bad moods. Our calm and respectful nature was the remedy.

Give value
Some customers usually came to buy the charcoal with nothing to carry them in. I realised my mum started keeping the polythene bags she got from vendors at the market whenever she buys groceries for our home. These polythene bags were used to serve her customers. She made sure nothing got wasted. There were roasted plantain sellers who loved the smaller sized charcoal, and there were chop bar operators who loved the bigger one. For some of the customers who liked to buy a sack from time to time, my mother showed them how to tell good charcoal from bad ones (even when they were in a sack).

Request for and act on feedback
My mum encourages feedback from her customers with respect to the charcoal they've bought or how her 'employees' relate to them. This informed her decisions on changing a particular supplier, or scolding us for being disrespectful and unprofessional.

I decided to share this, as I reflect on how some organisations pride themselves with qualifications of their staff, but fail to perform such little acts to enhance the customer experience they so desire to achieve.

Book sense no be sense o.





Monday, May 11, 2015

What Yahoo! can learn from a kelewele seller

Yahoo! says Flicker isn't available in Ghana
 Naa Merley is one of the earliest Kelewele sellers in her neighbourhood.
She enjoyed a greater share of the market until other Kelewele sellers began operations in the same neighbourhood. Naa wasn't disturbed because she still had customers loyal to her 'brand'.

Then reality hit.

Customers were patronising other vendors who had both kelewele and groundnuts for sale. They no longer bought Naa's kelewele, as it meant they had to go to another place to get the groundnuts.

The above scenario is what Yahoo! is facing. As a Yahoo! Mail user in Ghana, I am able to download and use the mobile app, but then I'm surprised I can't download and use the Flickr app -- Yahoo! says it's unavailable in Ghana.

I. Don't. Get. It.

If I can use the web versions of both services in Ghana, why can't I equally use the mobile apps?
Yahoo! Mail App is ready to be installed.


Customer retention is based on value being got out of using a product. If Yahoo! is really looking at gaining popularity and usage for its photo-sharing app Flickr, it has to make it available in countries -- like Ghana -- where photo marketing; local content creation using pictures is gaining ground.