Each week I read a number of customer service and customer experience articles from various 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.
The Secret Sauce to Customer Experience is a Blend of Four Ingredients by Joseph Michelli
(The Michelli Experience) Recently, a new client of mine said, “Just like everyone else I want to differentiate my business through the customer experiences I provide, but quite frankly I’ve tried a lot of things and am not seeing any sustained improvement.”
My Comment: Joseph Michelli is no stranger to the “Top Five” weekly roundup. This week he pens a short article on four “must do/have” customer service strategies: speed, convenience, knowledgeable help and friendly service. I’m glad he’s including convenience. That is what will turn a good customer experience into a great customer experience.
On Hold for 45 Minutes? It Might Be Your Secret Customer Score by Khadeeja Safdar
(WSJ) Retailers, wireless carriers and others crunch data to determine what shoppers are worth for the long term—and how well to treat them
My Comment: This is a fascinating article put out by The Wall Street Journal. You may have to sign in to read it, but it is well worth the extra effort. Imagine this: Two customers call for support at the same time. One is put on hold for 45 minutes and the other for 45 seconds. Why? Because these companies know who you are and have rated you on how much you spend, how much you complain and more.
21 Lessons From Jeff Bezos’ Annual Letters To Shareholders by CB Insights
(CB Insights) Each year, Jeff Bezos writes an open letter to Amazon’s shareholders. Over the last two decades, these letters have become an unparalleled source of insight into how the world’s richest man — and his company — think about customers, innovation, building products, and more.
My Comment: I’m always intrigued by anything I can learn from Jeff Bezos. For 21 years, he has written a letter to Amazon’s shareholders, which give you a glimpse into the way he thinks about customers, experience, innovation and much more.
(CNBC) The first step in online retail success: Accept there are some things that Amazon does that your company could never possibly compete with. Scope of product offering and price are big ones to concede to Jeff Bezos’ retail killer.
My Comment: As long as we’re on the topic of Jeff Bezos and Amazon (see Top Five article number three), here’s a great article about how to compete in the Amazon world. The secret? Don’t compete against Amazon. Do what Amazon doesn’t do.
Here’s Why Airlines DON’T Care About Customer Service by Kindra Cooper
(CCW Digital) Airlines seem to be above reproach when it comes to poor customer service, and the average air traveler knows it.
My Comment: This article is a bit controversial, in my opinion. I found it fascinating in that it is making the case for why airlines don’t care about delivering good customer service. That may appear to be the case with some airlines, but I’ll argue that it’s not true for all. That said, you’ll find it interesting, and it does close with an important statement: “And for those in the business of flying, know that your customers will always gravitate towards whatever is most convenient, and given the intensity of the competition, marginal differences in service can sometimes make a big difference.”
Shep Hyken is a customer service expert, professional speaker and New York Times bestselling business author. For information on The Customer Focus™ customer service training programs go to www.TheCustomerFocus.com. Follow on Twitter: @Hyken