5 Top Customer Service Articles For the Week of September 10, 2012


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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.

A Customer Complaint Is a Gift by BJ Gallagher

(Huffington Post) “What a concept!” I marveled to myself as I read Janelle Barlow’s book, A Complaint is a Gift. It’s a business book about customer service and the importance of getting feedback, especially negative feedback, from customers. Barlow, and her coauthor, Claus Møller, assert that complaints are not problems to be avoided — complaints are actually gifts to be welcomed. What a radical way to think about negative feedback!

My Comment: Great summary of why we should embrace a complaint. We have a chance to fix a problem, renew the customer’s confidence and find a way to improve business.

6 Smart Tricks to Get Better Feedback by Charlie Graham

(Inc) Want to know what your customers really think? Go beyond focus groups and try some of these clever techniques.

My Comment: Customer feedback is so very important. The six ideas to get feedback are great. I’d add one more idea, which is to also get feedback from your former customers. And also very important is that once you have the feedback, you should do something with it!

Internal Service Cooperation by Peter Psichogios

(CSI International) As I have stressed in the earlier customer experience blogs, I believe service is an “inside out” proposition. Meaning, for you to consistently create exceptional customer experiences, you first must have great internal service from work group to work

group and individual to individual. Then and only then will you and your organization be in a position to consistently create memorable experiences for your external customers.

My Comment: Peter gets it when he writes: The one thing the best service organizations all have in common is exceptional internal service cooperation. Internal customer service is where outside/external customer service begins. The customer feels what’s happening inside of an organization, both the good and the bad.

3 Smarter Ways to Raise Prices by Geoffrey James

(Inc) An increase in price, if done correctly, can actually make your current customers feel more appreciated.

My Comment: Great strategies on how to raise prices without upsetting the customer. As mentioned in the article, NetFlix raised their prices and created a customer service debacle. Just before that, Bank of America started charging extra fees and it became a PR nightmare. Helping customers understand why the prices are being increased ahead of time may actually create a closer connection. Great point! Communication is the key!

(Business 2 Community) To share published content in social media is not enough. Content creation and content marketing as a holistic strategy must be performed on regular basis to gain measurable and profitable results on the long term.

My Comment: Becoming a resource for your customer builds confidence (as a thought leader) and loyalty, as the customer turns to the company for advice, support, help, etc. Original content is great and preferred, but sharing “curated content” shows that you are well read and keeping up with current information. In the end, sharing content is a powerful way to create confidence, which can help lead to customer loyalty.

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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