Providing good customer service just isn’t enough anymore, not with companies the world over clamouring for the dwindling dollars consumers spend. And heaven forbid your customer service should be classified average! That could, literally, be the death of a company if it’s not turned around quickly.
Encourage your team to take customer service from bland and boring to knock-your-socks-off spectacular, and you can stand back and watch the amazing results achieved!
1. Engage your customers. Step into their shoes. Understand where they’re coming from. Listen. Empathize. Often customers only want to be heard. They may not even expect a problem to be resolved, but they want to know that your team cares about their problem. When your team does that, you’ve taken a long stride in turning customers into raving fans who’ll return to your company often and encourage others to do the same.
2. Create a positive, lasting customer experience. Walk through your company to see how customers perceive their experience in dealing with you from start to finish. This may be physically or virtually depending on your service channels. Did their phone call get answered promptly and courteously? Was the web experience clear and easy to follow? Where the floors clean? Were they greeted with a smile and a friendly hello when they walked in the door? If someone didn’t have an answer to a question or a need, were they quick to search for an answer?
Consider each element of the interaction a customer experiences when they do business with you, then work to build a positive experience that meets them at the door and walks them through their entire visit and beyond. Then chose 1 or 2 specific elements you can do better than anyone else. They will become your point of differentiation.
3. Get out of the proverbial box. Doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results is one definition of insanity. Customers love to be surprised and the best way to do that is do things a little differently. Do something unusual and extraordinary and your customers will keep coming back just to see what you’ll do next.
4. Indulge your customers. Let them know that you’ll go out of your way to ensure there are “wowed”! Offer a little more than the “other guy”. Your customers will notice. Wouldn’t you?
5. Get excited! Customers appreciate service delivered with excitement and enthusiasm. They’ll rave about how much fun it is to do business with your company. And who will they be raving to? Friends, family and anyone else who’ll listen. When your people are excited about serving customers — customers feel appreciated. In turn, they’ll reward your company with continued business and extravagant praise for everything you do.
Customer service goes far beyond a one-time visit or experience. Customer service that turns average, ho-hum customers into raving fans can only be accomplished by a team full of customer-oriented, customer-focused people driven to impress and inspire customers with their level of concern. Build such a team in your company, and you’ll amaze yourselves at the level of customer loyalty you create!