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As the Rolling Stones sang in their 1965 Number 1 hit it’s a message that resonates with all of us at some time in our lives.  You just don’t want to hear this coming from your customers mouths.

In a recent McKinsey & Company article by Alfonso Pulido, Dorian Stone and John Strevel, they list the three Cs of customer satisfaction:  consistency, consistency, consistency.

The authors are not just talking about a transaction with a customer but their “journey”, their overall experience with different departments in your company (the sales experience, the customer service experience, the technical support experience, etc.).  And not just one experience but how they experience you over time.

In their research the authors found that “maximizing satisfaction with customer journeys has the potential not only to increase customer satisfaction by 20 percent but also to lift revenue by up to 15 percent while lowering the cost of serving customers by as much as 20 percent.”

1. Customer-journey consistency

This represents the customer’s overall experience with your company as they engage different departments for different reasons.  Research showed larger businesses, especially those with multiple locations, fared the poorest.  The secret…adhere to clear policies and procedures throughout your organization.

2. Emotional consistency

Their research showed that the emotion connected a positive customer experience was trust.  This was one of the biggest drivers of loyalty to a company.

3. Communication consistency

The authors argue that your brand is not only enhanced by delivering on your promises but also by reminding customers that you are delivering on those promises.  So communicate  your successes to them.


You have a better chance of creating customer satisfaction if you give them a positive experience throughout their entire interaction with your company (their journey) rather than if they experience satisfaction during one phase.

Identify where poor customer experiences are happening and correct them.  A negative interaction has 4-5 times the impact than a positive one.

Act now.  Customers are becoming less and less satisfied with an “average” experience.  And most will not tell you they are leaving, they just leave.

Consider Reading This

The Everything Store: Jeff Bezos and the Age of Amazon by Brad Stone is the story of Jeff Bezos, founder of  With access to current and former employees and Bezos family members we get a behind-the-scenes look at a company that started out delivering books and now wants to sell you everything.