Think back to your the last great customer service experience. Most likely, you still can remember the customer’s name, visualize the customer’s face and feel good about the experience. At the time, you probably happy to shared it with friends and fellow workers. Great customer service is unfailingly memorable. It’s always right even when the customer isn’t. It is one of the best strategies for developing a sustainable competitive advantage. People like to buy from people they like. Creating positive customer relationships opens customer to like you and your product. Your customers will feel good about buying from you the first time and second time and they’ll keep coming back.
The extra mile that’s never crowded
An 89-year old Pennsylvanian was snowed in around the holidays. His daughter was worried he wouldn’t have enough food. She couldn’t find anyone to deliver through the snow. Her last call was to Trader Joe’s, who doesn’t normally deliver, but said they would in this special instance. They took the order, delivered the food with 30 minutes of the call, refused to accept any money and saved the holiday for one elderly man and his worried daughter.
After the daughter ordered the food, the employee told her not to worry about the price. They would bring her father his groceries free of charge. Just thirty minutes later, the man received all the groceries he needed. The groceries even came with some extra items suggested by the Trader Joe’s team. Their customer service philosophy is simple and powerful: ‘Do the right thing when a person is in need.’
Customers remember great customer service experiences. In a crowded marketplace, a great customer experience can often be the deciding competitive edge.
Create customer crusaders with great customer service
You can convert a difficult customer into a loyal crusader. Listen to the customer. Let the customer believe she is important to you. Empathize with a sincere apology. Let the customer know you can make things right. Give them what it takes to do the right thing. Doing the right thing for a customer is a powerful way to deliver great customer service. Most difficult customer converts become great loyal crusaders and spread the word at every opportunity. Customer converts are a marketing goldmine. They take word of mouth advertising to the next level. Everyone likes a glowing 5-star reference from a satisfied customer.
Give customers what they want
Build a success plan for great customer service. Use an incentive program for employees to deliver great customer experiences. Set the program’s target goals high. Measure achievement with a metric your employees will understand. Get employees involved in deciding the rewards. Kick off the program with a lot of sizzle and keep the excitement popping.
When employees deliver great customer service immediate recognition delivers the better results. Immediate rewards can help increase customer service, productivity and sales.
Plan for great customer service and you can have it.