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.
(Forbes) Historically, customers used to buy the practical benefits of a product or service. More recently, however, the experience that customers receive has become ever more important and the battleground on which most companies are now competing.
My Comment: I’ve always felt that a company’s “giving back” campaign (as in giving back to the community or philanthropic efforts) are part of the customer experience. Some customers feel good about the companies they do business with when they know they are contributing to, as the author of this article calls it, a greater purpose. And, more than just feeling good, some customers make the choice because of the company’s contributions. Richard Branson’s Virgin Unite has won the hearts (and dollars) of tens of thousands of customers because they like being a part of that “bigger cause.” This article points out the importance of making philanthropy a part of the customer experience.
Making Customer Experience Your Marketing and Sales Magnet by Chuck Sykes
(CustomerThink) The takeover is complete: The customer is in control and customer experience now reigns supreme over the business universe.
My Comment: A few years ago people were saying, “Customer service is the new marketing.” Today it’s not the “new marketing.” It’s is marketing. The author of this short article makes three important points to emphasize that customer service, marketing and sales have merged to create an experience that helps customers make buying decisions, and at the same time, makes them feel good about those decisions.
The One Question That Saved This Company From Losing My Business by Kostya Kimlat
(Kostya Kimlat) I was trying to get electronic payments out to my partners and vendors before the end of the year. What should have been an easy process turned into a nightmare.
My Comment: I just love a good story that makes an important point – and in this case, it’s a point about customer service. He was walking out of his bank, ready to do business elsewhere, when an employee asked a powerful question. It was a true human-to-human interaction. It made him want to come back. This line sums it up nicely: No matter how great your brand may be, the reputation and customer loyalty is determined by the final exchange between employee and customer.
(Websitebuilder) You are undoubtedly aware of the importance of customer service on your online business’ road to success. But, what you may not know is that customers’ expectations have now reached new heights, demanding instant support and fast acting. In order to keep up with the latest trends, it is essential to improve customer experience. If you cannot think of an innovative way to do so – we have the answer.
My Comment: This short article and infographic was sent to me earlier this week. 101 reasons for live chat is a lot of reasons, and some are more compelling than others. Regardless, there’s some interesting stats and facts that confirm that customers like using this simple technology. Depending on your business, if you’re not already using live chat, it’s time to think about it.
(QuestionPro) Organizations have long emphasized on customer experience and the value it adds to the organization. Right from purchasing a product to the after sales interaction can be broadly termed as customer experience.
My Comment: One of the most common discussions we have with our clients is around how to develop a powerful customer service or experience survey. This short article has some of the basics that should be considered as you create the perfect survey that will give you the insights you need to deliver a better customer experience.
5 SIMPLE TIPS to MASSIVELY increase survey RESPONSE RATE by Kushal Dev
(Customer Guru) If you are getting low responses on your surveys your customers are pretty much thinking the same. A low response rate only means low stickiness.
My Comment: Following up on the fifth article in this roundup (about creating surveys), it seemed appropriate to add this article as a “Top Five Bonus.” Our friends at Customer Guru, the NPS experts, wrote a short article about how to increase response rates to your surveys. Great info!
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