5 Top Customer Service Articles For the Week of December 17, 2012


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Top Customer Service and Business Articles

Each week I read a number of customer service articles from various online resources. Here are my top five picks from last week. I have added my comment about each article and would like to hear what you think too.

Twitter: A New Age for Customer Service by Lisa Quast

(Forbes) Social media has offered a new way for businesses to interact with both current and potential customers. Sanda Belaire, a manager at Nordstrom’s flagship store in Seattle, knows firsthand how beneficial it is to form these online relationships. She has used her socially savvy skills to promote both the company she works for and herself professionally.

My Comment: This is an outstanding interview with Sanda Belaire from Nordstrom who uses social media to interact with current and future customers. While Nordstrom is a retailer, the ideas that Sanda shares are relevant to virtually any business in any industry – not just retail. Most articles about business and social media focus on Twitter and Facebook. It’s nice to see a couple of other channels mentioned; Pinterest and Instagram.

For Customer Experience, “Just OK” Is Not OK by Camilo La Cruz

(Fast Company) The brands we celebrate unequivocally have superior customer experience–something only 3% of companies can claim. These questions will help get your company there too.

My Comment: Just okay is NOT okay. Good enough is NOT good enough. There is a big difference between satisfied customers and loyal customers. Companies that aim to “satisfy” their customers miss the opportunity to create a more meaningful business relationship that fosters repeat business, word-of-mouth-marketing and more. I was surprised from the Forrester research that three out of four companies have a goal of being different based on the customer experience, but that only 3% actually seem to do so. It wouldn’t hurt any company – even the ones in the top 3% – to read through the list of ideas in this article.

How to Win a Customer Back by Geoffrey James

(Inc) Departing customers can teach you how to win them back, but only if you’re open-minded.

My Comment: Another great list from Geoffrey James. I especially like the first strategy in winning a customer back, which is to get the back story. There is an old saying: The thinnest piece of paper has two sides. Make sure you get the BOTH sides of the story!

Shoppers Will Switch for Customer Service By Brian O’Connell

(The Street) Consumers know time is a commodity too, like ball bearings and Barbie dolls. So when they’re doing their holiday shopping or are online looking for a good deal on gifts, they don’t want to wait or find problems completing a purchase, and they expect fair treatment from retailers.

My Comment: Even though the numbers in this article focus on companies that are more retail oriented (business to consumer), you can’t ignore them regardless of the business you’re in. Study after study proves that customers will spend more for good service. So the take-away from this article is simple: Deliver the best service you can provide your customers. If you don’t, a good number of your customers will find a place that does, even if it costs a little more.

The Power of Enthusiasm In Customer Service by Errol Allen

(Business 2 Community) A key ingredient to success in the customer service industry is enthusiasm. This component is crucial to both gaining and retaining customers. Whether you’re on the phone, face to face, emailing or web chatting, your level of enthusiasm is apparent to your customer. Enthusiasm is contagious! Here are a few tips on enthusiasm.

My Comment: Someone once said, “Enthusiasm is contagious.” You can’t help by feeling better about doing business with someone who is upbeat and has a great attitude. As an employee, you can’t help by feeling better about working with someone who has that same enthusiastic attitude. So, it’s also important to remember what my colleague Danny Cox once said: “If enthusiasm is contagious, then if what you have is not enthusiasm, that is also contagious.”

Republished with author's permission from original post.

Shep Hyken
Shep Hyken, CSP, CPAE is the Chief Amazement Officer of Shepard Presentations. As a customer service speaker and expert, Shep works with companies who want to build loyal relationships with their customers and employees. He is a hall of fame speaker (National Speakers Association) and a New York Times and Wall Street Journal best-selling author.


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