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  • Writer's pictureKenneth Cochrane

The Dreaded Churn

We’ve done a number of studies in the financial services market place to understand product churn. The number one reason given is price. But, to understand price as the driver to change, we need to delve into what prompts the price examination. Here the primary driver more often than not is dissatisfaction with the service or product purchased. 

Most firms know where their pricing falls relative to their competitors. So do their distributors. But do firms really understand why clients become dissatisfied? All clients are different. They have differing expectations, perspectives, optics, backgrounds, family and friends. All will influence their decisions in different ways.

But, do you know why clients and/or distributors become dissatisfied? What upset them enough to go thru the often arduous, sometimes painful, process of changing carriers? With a better customer experience could the client be saved? Were expectations initially set that may have been incorrect? What was the advisor’s role in the change? The incumbent advisor or a new advisor?The most important question is could you have saved the business and how?

We all realize financial service products traditionally don’t break even for the carrier until they have been in effect for a period time. Therefore it’s pretty simple to understand, if you keep the clients happy, the book of business will profitably grow.

Here’s why I bring up this point: We perform voice of the customer interviews to understand why they leave. Our clients will send an email to departed clients asking them to give us, an independent third party, 15 minutes by phone. We capture why they left, identify and aggregate themes and over time, identify trends. The feedback we supply our clients, gives them the insights to initiate corrections and in time we identify emerging our clients can anticipate.

Third party voice of the customer interviews are incredibly valuable to companies. Our clients receive unbiased feedback, identify issues driving customers away. We also unearth from the client what and how to correct dissatisfaction. Third parties also approach voice of the customer projects with a depth of knowledge from broad work across the industry, By putting issues into context, identifying the issues when corrected will have the greatest impact versus the least can save companies dollars and resources leading to greater profitability.

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