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Zero Frustration Philosophy


Your brand is built in the mind of your customers. Each and every interaction that they have with your firm has a direct impact on their emotional connection. The first priority of any established business should be to look for the situations that cause frustration for customers and systematically work to eliminate them. In our One Day Strategy Workshops, we call this the “Zero Frustration” philosophy. It is usually very easy to find the low hanging fruit for frustration by talking to your service and sales departments. Of course, if that fails, you could ask some of your customers.

In the book "Effortless Experience", by Mathew Dixon, Nick Toman and Rick DeLisi, the authors clearly explain that if you care about growing customer loyalty, it is imperative to reduce customer effort wherever possible. They prove that during any interaction, each time a customer has to change channels or are handed off, loyalty can decrease to up to 10%.

Frustration is the opposite of inspiration.

What’s worse than a decrease in customer loyalty? Frustration. Frustration can cause a grave dissatisfaction to the point of irreparable damaged to your brand. In our environment of always-on, hyper-connected customers, frustration can have a devastating impact. Your technology investments can have a tremendous impact on how you respond to service disruptions that are bound to occur in any business. Your technology strategy should address all possible service disruption scenarios and it should especially make certain that there are no disruptions in your customer’s technology experience.

Here are where service disruptions typically lie and some questions to ask about your firm:

  • In the decision making experience:
    • How easy do you make it to find information about your product or service?
    • How easy do you make it to compare what you offer vs. your competitors?
    • How are you educating your customers when they are trying to figure out what is right for them?
  • In the purchasing process:
    • How easy and seamless do you make it to purchase your product or service?
    • How do you enable the sales process at the point of purchase?
  • When trying to learn how to use your product or service:
    • How are you listening your customer’s concerns?
    • How are you making those first few experiences amazing?
  • In the use of your product or service:
    • What happens when your product or service is broken or not functioning properly?
    • What happens when your service organization doesn’t behave correctly?
    • How are you following up with your customers who experience disruptions?

If you think about it, the most innovative products and services in the world, those that you become personally attached to, are those that take frustrations and effort out of your life. True innovation lies in looking for disruptive ways to reduce customer effort and eliminate all of their sources of frustration.

Once you’ve thought through these things for your business, think about all the ways that your technology can address each of those questions with consistency, empathy and in a way that reinforces your brand promise. Most importantly, make sure you know when to get the technology out of the way and have a person on the other end of the line to assist your customers through their disruption.

A Zero Frustration philosophy is what separates the great companies from the rest.