How important is customer service to your business? This question can be answered with a more specific question; how important is customer service to you? There are plenty of tactics and strategies that boast “fool-proof” methods for converting potential customers into repeat clients, but when you take away the sparkle and shine of the author’s advertising, the tips and tricks are often rare scenarios of fortune and fame. Want a real strategy for making a difference in yourself and in your business? Learn, live and provide unrivaled customer service.
How can you learn the skill that will set you and your business apart from the rest? Consider following these guidelines for living the customer service lifestyle:
1. Potential Customers: High quality customer service starts before the company or individual is even an actual customer. What does this mean? Your target marketing campaigns should be personalized for the individual customer as much as possible. This can become difficult as your target market grows, but there is no tactic or strategy that will be as effective as the personalization of potential client interaction. How would you feel if you received a personalized letter that thanked you for simply looking at and considering purchasing the TV at TVShack? No sales pitch, no gimmicks, just honest appreciation for your time and potential business. There are businesses that are taking these steps, and it is paying off.
2. Current / Existing Customers: What are your current customers saying about you and/or your company? Do you even care? You should. Social media platforms such as Twitter and Facebook have made this feedback extremely powerful. No longer does your customer’s opinion of your product only matter to your customer. His or her opinion potentially affects everyone who sees or follows his or her social media timeline. Consider responding to customers. Find out what they are saying, and respond. Depending on the size of your company, this may be shocking to the commenter, but if this approach to business feedback to customers is calculated and professional, you will build an image of a business that really cares. And you do care don’t you? Your financial stability depends on it.
3. Past Customers: This can be a tough one. Are you currently approaching past clients to build the potential for future business? You should be. Don’t let pride step in the way of doing what is right. Now that they are no longer your customer, treat them like an old friend. Tell them you appreciate their past business, and look forward to the opportunity of future business. No matter what the circumstances of the split were, this can only affect your business image in a positive manner, if approached sincerely. Get out of your comfort zone and approach those you may have not treated so well in the past. The truth is, there is always an alternative. Improve your chances of being the trusted partner or provider by showing your past customers that you still care about their business.
As Thomas Friedman said in “The World Is Flat”, whatever can be automated, will be automated. The fact is, high quality, personalized customer service can’t be automated. There are tools that attempt to do this, but they are eventually ineffective, as they are unable to effectively communicate with the human demeanor. Set yourself and your company apart by taking the time to show your potential, current and past clients that you not only care about what you are selling, but you care about the person that is buying.