Saturday, February 21, 2009

customer service still sucks

Bad customer service equals business death.

If you don't know how to kiss your customer's ass, you better get down on your meager humility and learn. There will now be fewer purchases, lower sales frequency, and declining markets. Only the customer-centric will survive. If your business is still guided by a mission statement, marketing campaign, or PR fluff, you're doomed.

Passion for solving a customer's problem, or enhancing their life. That's what's most important, not profits, not increased production, not expansion into new markets. Serve the customers you already have. Start being nicer, more generous, more attentive to the client or user closest to you right now.

Increase your knowledge of the industry, processes, consumer psychology, and depth motivations. Continually improve your product or expertise. Transform satisfied customers into passionate word of mouth ambassadors, by treating them better and giving them more.

Most customer service STILL sucks. Even in this economic downturn, it STILL sucks. Can you believe it?

Here's a great example from a recent event. Last night my wife went to a new hair stylist. She waited until 15 minutes past her appointment time. When she inquired at the front desk, my wife was informed, after some disorganized whispering and calendar checking, that her stylist had not come in, and would she like to re-schedule?

My wife said no, and a few other things, and left. Never to return to this beauty salon.

How much do you value your customers?

How valuable, kind, and generous, in time and effort, are you to your clients?

Do you abandon them after a major project?

Do you offer to do extra work, add something cool, enhance an application, train them in some technique you're good at?

Customers are getting pickier. The economy is in ruins. You can't afford to spend a lot of money acquiring new customers and you can't afford to lose current customers.

Improve your customer relations now.

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