Here are five of my top pieces of customer service expert advice. Paste these to your mirror, work on them daily, and your competitors will never know what hit them!
1. Obsess over the beginning and ending of the customer interaction.
Because of how human memory works, you have to get these moments right if you want your customers to remember their time with you pleasantly.
Not only are beginnings and endings crucial, but they often start before you know it. This principle is exemplified by Walt Disney obsessing not just about how their actual parks look, but about how the surrounding neighbourhood looks as well: because the guests’ entrance to “the park experience” starts before the actual entrance.
The same is true—maybe even more so—online: What is your customers’ first impression of you online? (It’s probably not your website.) Is there anything you can do to improve this?
2. Meet your commitments in a timely fashion.
A perfect product, delivered late, feels like a defect. (And the timeline for what customers consider “late” is continually getting shorter.) If you have to be slow, you’d best work hard to re-define expectations or to change the customers’ experience of time.
For example: On the phone, offer call back times without the customer losing their place in the que. Most call waiting technology offers this functionality; you may have already experienced this option as a customer during a peak period. Implement it into your own business!
3. Offload the transactional.
Customers appreciate it when you streamline or automate transactional details, the things machines can do as well or better than humans.
Be intelligent about doing this, however: Certain types of transactional offloading may be completely off-brand for what you’re trying to accomplish.
And be gentle: Few customers like to be forced into a particular channel for service.
4. Don’t just be good—be memorably good.
If you don’t create a memorable experience for your customers, your story won’t spread. Customer service is indeed the new marketing, or at least it is an incredibly powerful support that makes your marketing resonate by matching it with the truth of your business.
So don’t only be nice; be nice in a memorable way. Extra nice, quickly nice, authentically nice, even quirkily nice… you get the idea.
5. Learn to apologize.
Things will go wrong. (Things will go right and yet customers will perceive them to be wrong–it’s the same thing.) Prepare for this, emotionally as well as operationally.
Carlos Quiroga is a customer service expert who lives and breathes the advice he offers.
At Enhance Services, we are committed to providing quality products guaranteed to meet the highest standards.
This blog was adapted by Carlos Quiroga General Manager Client Services, Enhance Cleaning 2016 from an article appearing on Commercial Cleaning on the Commercial Janitor website (US). Carlos can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org