How to make your customer service memorable
By Adam Blanch
How do you create customer service that will be remembered, appreciated and earn great reviews?
Memorable customer service is easy to provide, but memorable doesn't always mean positive. It only takes one angry customer telling all their friends to stay away for business to plummet. If you need any evidence, online review sites are full of spectacularly shocking customer service experiences.
So how do we create customer service that will be remembered and appreciated? All you really need to do is respect the customer's investment of time and money in your business, and deliver on your promise. Let's start with that promise.
Every business, service and product is making a promise. In some way the product or service will make the customer's life easier, more exciting, more secure or more enjoyable. First figure out what your promise is, then determine how to make good on that promise. Your customer service is an extension of your promise. If it doesn't match your promise, it makes it hard for people to trust you.
If you're selling security, design your customer service around serious people doing serious work - this will engender trust. If you are selling excitement, excite them with service experiences that are surprising, fun and new. If enjoyment is your promise, then make your customer service pleasant with good aesthetics and helpful people. If you are selling 'easy', make it quick and simple for customers to deal with you (think supermarkets).
All good customer service shares a few basic features. The reason? They are all based on a relationship.
Effort: You should be doing the work, not the customer. Once a customer has presented themselves, it is your responsibility to continue the communication until they have what they want.
Respect: A customer is taking a risk to make contact with your business. They are giving you their time, attention and money in the hope that they will get what they want. You need to treat their trust with respect by being timely, doing what you say you will do, keeping them informed if there is a problem and treating them as someone important.
Care: We remember the people and the businesses that do more than they really need to. It's not a purchase - it's a relationship.
Repair: If there's a problem, fix it. A business will never be judged more strongly than when there's an issue to resolve. If you do it right, you will earn a customer for life. If you fail, they will spread the word to avoid your business.
We don't remember customer service that is merely satisfactory, which means we don't give that business preference next time around. Memorable service, good or bad, creates an enduring attitude in a customer. When it's good, it's money in the bank.