Learn secrets of how successful companies get ‘close to the customer’

From: Policy Publications Ltd
Published: Mon Apr 16 2007

Why do some companies excel at building highly profitable customer relationships? How do they find and retain high-value customers? How do they improve customer satisfaction levels? How do they handle complaints and compliments? How do they keep profitable customers loyal or differentiate between "good" and "bad" customers?

These and other customer management issues are addressed in the ‘Close to the Customer’ series of briefings. The mission of the series is to show how companies can harness fresh management ideas and current and evolving technologies to build closer links with customers, increase market-share and enhance profitability.

According to Prof. Colin Coulson-Thomas, consultant editor of the briefings and chairman of Adaptation Ltd, "Building more effective, intimate and mutually beneficial customer relationships is a high priority of ever more businesses and vital for competitive success. Customer management ought to be at the top of the agenda. Yet managers at the sharp-end are faced by a daunting list of urgent challenges."
Faced by the enormity of what may need to be done and the many different areas that may have to be looked at Coulson-Thomas, who works with a wide range of businesses finds: "People can become mesmerised. They need guidance from people with ‘real world’ experience. They need help in accessible and bite sized chunks."
Coulson-Thomas explains: "Each ‘Close to the Customer’ briefing targets a specific hot topic. It presents the results of research by a team of global specialists in a concise easy-to-read format. Each briefing is aimed at the needs of busy managers who need to keep abreast of thinking about key marketing and customer management issues."
Critically, people with customer management responsibilities require actionable information. Coulson-Thomas points out that: "In each briefing, you find a clear overview of management thinking in a given area. You discover relevant management techniques and methodologies. And you tap into hard practical experience that will help you shape your own customer strategies with more confidence."
Issue by issue, the ‘Close to the Customer’ series of briefings builds into a portfolio of ideas and information about customer management. Coulson-Thomas finds: "Some people have saved hours of time researching key customer issues." According to the University of Lincoln professor, "Our intention is that the briefings should provide a cost-effective way of building knowledge and expertise about keeping customers satisfied, supply analytical tools to help you find answers to key questions in your own company, and provide practical help designed to guide you to the right decisions for your company."
Briefings have been published on customer value management, effective data mining, targeting high-value customers, managing complaints and compliments, relationship marketing strategy, building customer relationships best practice, relationship marketing technology, customer loyalty best practice, a new strategy of marketing, direct mail best practice, implementing transparent marketing, best practice customer management, managing good and bad customers, managing customers with e-business, models of customer management, customer management on the move, multiple intermediation, the intelligent e-business, the intelligent supply chain, time-lapse customer management, people in customer management, and customer pricing.
Because the briefings are modular, people can select a portfolio of briefings to address their companies’ particular customer management issues, priorities and opportunities. Sector specific briefings have been published covering: managing frequent traveller schemes, managing retail customers, retail insurance customer management, retail banking customer management, managing customer service in utilities, and managing automotive customers.
Information about the initial 22 ‘Close to the Customer’ briefings and six further briefings can be obtained from www.ntwkfirm.com/policy-publications/
The briefings, bespoke benchmarking reports, a related ‘Winning New Business’ resource pack, and winning business reports covering individual sectors and seven professions can be obtained from Policy Publications: Tel: +44 (0) 1733 361 149; Fax: +44 (0)1733 361459; colinct@tiscali.co.uk or from http://www.policypublications.com

A range of further support services including courses and bespoke benchmarking are also available from the winning business and customer relationship research and best practice programme led by Prof. Colin Coulson-Thomas, co-author of ‘Winning New Business, the critical success factors’ and author of ‘Winning Companies; Winning People’, who has reviewed the winning business processes and practices of over 100 companies and spoken at sales, business development and CRM events in some 30 countries. He can be contacted via Tel: +44 (0) 1733 361 149; Fax: +44 (0)1733 361459; colinct@tiscali.co.uk or http://www.coulson-thomas.com
Company: Policy Publications Ltd
Contact Name: Colin Coulson-Thomas
Contact Email: colinct@tiscali.co.uk
Contact Phone: +44(0)1733361149

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