Clienting is a customer management methodology for improving the efficiency of the economic resources a company uses to increase customer loyalty. Clienting is the intellectual framework for customer strategies that try to improve revenues, margin, and customer service, creating a virtuous circle of organic growth.
For many companies, smarter customer management is the best option for growth. Many companies are facing several opportunities: to make their customers last longer as customers; to get those customers to carry out more, and more profitable, transactions during their time as a customer; and, to encourage them to do other things that benefit the company, such as making recommendations to family and friends.
These three dimensions of growth make up the basis of what we call “economies of loyalty.” The company gains economies of loyalty when the customer finds the service experience to be more valuable than he expected or than what he can find with other options in the market. Clienting is the logic with which we intend to facilitate a virtuous circle of improvement in both the customer’ s loyal behaviors and his perceived value. In order to initiate the circular dynamic, it is necessary to focus our energies on the way to increase perceived value so that, in chosen customer segments, there is an increase in satisfaction, loyal behaviors, and profitability, and in growth of these elements.
These variables must be managed in a synchronized manner. Any action that could increase perceived value, but not improve customer satisfaction, would be a disaster. Likewise any action that could increase perceived value and satisfaction, but not improve customer loyalty, would be nonsense. Finally, it would be useless to increase customer perceived value and satisfaction, and the accompanying loyal behaviors, if their impact on benefits was not sufficient to outweigh the costs incurred. In short, the relationship between perceived value, satisfaction, loyalty, and profitability should be sufficiently close that the initiated actions are capable of beginning the movement of the circle of sustained growth.
The circle of profitable growth is at the heart of the five-step Clienting methodology that we present below. The purpose of this strategy is to make profitable the company’ s latent economies of loyalty, and the focus is on the customer base. Clienting is the soul of customer strategies.