Why 60% of African companies, businesses and startups struggle to retain customers – Feyisola Maru

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Why 60% of African companies, businesses and startups struggle to retain customers - Feyisola Maru
Feyisola Maru

Feyisola Maru is an experienced and seasoned Customer Experience and Customer Service professional. Through his company, Amarsorl Africa, he has trained close to 1000 professionals within one year on customer experience and business transformation. He emerged one of MSME Africa’s top 20 Remarkable Founders 2022. In this interview, he bared his mind on the importance and relevance of customer experience in business.

Can we get to know you and the nature of your business?

My name is Feyisola Maru, the founder and lead consultant of Amarsorl Africa.  I am an experienced customer experience professional with over 7 years of experience in Customer Journey Mapping, Managing Customer Expectations, Creating a  Positive Customer Experience, Customer Insights and Understanding, Customer Experience Strategy, Metrics, Measurement & ROI, Design, Implementation, and Innovation, Culture and Accountability, I have trained more than 1000 professionals in different sectors of the economy within one year of starting Amarsorl Africa. I have also consulted for more than 10 companies in education, information technology and hospitality sectors. Amarsorl Africa is a customer experience consulting firm which helps companies to give a consistent “wow” experience to their customers. We aim to make customers have fewer ruined days while doing business with companies regardless of their size and location. We train employees to be more customer-centric while discharging their duties, how to manage customer expectations, problem-solving and create a positive customer experience.

Kindly provide a brief history of your business

Amarsorl Africa was founded in the year 2021 after the discovery that more than 60% of African companies, businesses and startups struggle to retain customers due to a lack of customer-centric culture and ignorance of who their customers are.

We have grown to have worldclass consultants both homegrown and expatriate. Businesses started consulting us before our door was opened. We are happy to have served customers across the country.

What influenced your choice of business?

Amarsorl Africa was founded to help businesses give an outstanding experience to customers thereby turning them to brand ambassadors.

Customers in Africa are not getting value for their money but in quality and the experience they get. An example is the power sector in Nigeria. While prices have been increased at several times, customers are still unable to get value for their money. This is the reason why we started Amarsorl Africa, to help companies build a customer-centric brand which considers customers before profit.

Customer Experience is crucial to customer loyalty in the long-term, what more can you tell us are the essence(s) of enrolling in Customer Experience Trainings as entrepreneurs?

  • Loyalty as key to driving long-term business success :very business wants to develop loyal customers. Focusing more closely on each customer’s big-picture needs helps accomplish this as well.
  • According to Customer Contact Week Digital, after the pandemic, customer experience is now more important to 58% of consumers.
  • Importance of understanding customer pain points: Helping customers solve challenging pain points is high on the list of things that generate positive customer experience. But this goes well beyond simply fixing something that’s broken. And truly understanding a customer’s most significant pain points is easier said than done.
  • Customer service vs. Customer experience: Customer service and customer experience are two very different things, but it has become increasingly important to understand how they are interrelated in today’s business environment. Superior customer service can go a long way  towards establishing a positive customer experience
  • Encouraging and acting on customer feedback is very important as this will give you the chance  to know what your customers want and hates.

What have been your company’s greatest challenges and how have you been able to overcome the challenge(s)?

Our greatest challenges have been getting customers. This is because we are a relatively new consulting firm in a space where businesses don’t really want to invest their money.

The second is publicity for the brand. We have already designed our publicity strategy which will start in August 2022.

The third challenge is that more than 80% of people do not  understand what customer experience is. So whenever we speak with people, we have to explain what customer experience is before talking about what we can do. A case study is the director of one organisation in the education sector on the mainland of  Lagos. When we started our conversation, he hasn’t heard about customer experience management at all. We took our time to explain the basics to him and let him understand why his company needs a customer experience strategy.

What does your company bring differently to the ecosystem of consulting firms?

We do a thorough observation of each client before we give advice or train people. Our Standard is to go to clients’ facilities to observe and speak with staff before we design tailored solutions. Each client is given specific solutions specially designed for them and not random solutions.

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