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Top 5 Customer Service & CX Articles for the Week of February 20, 2023

Each week, I read many 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. Jeff Toister’s Top Tips for Crafting a Successful Customer Culture by Melanie Mingas (CX Network) […]

Each week, I read many 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.

Jeff Toister’s Top Tips for Crafting a Successful Customer Culture by Melanie Mingas

(CX Network) CX author and keynote speaker Jeff Toister offers his advice for customer experience managers looking to create a winning customer culture.

My Comment: We start this week’s Top Five roundup with an interview with customer culture expert Jeff Toister. He discusses the difference between the customer’s expectation and the reality of the brand’s execution, using an example from a fast-food restaurant. Does the picture of the food look the same as what you’re served? (I refer to that as the expectation gap – what you think you are going to get versus what you actually get.) The gold in the article is his simple three-step approach to building a customer-focused culture.

The Six Degrees of Customer Experience by Computerworld

(Computerworld) How do you create an outstanding customer experience? It’s no easy task, as customers’ wants and needs move quickly. So, it begs the question of how you’re setting up your business to shift with customer expectations? Keep reading to uncover the six degrees of separation between your customer experience strategy and how to achieve it.

My Comment: If you’ve been following this weekly column, then you know I love lists. The author is a software marketing guy, and he shares his take on creating a “dynamite customer experience.” My favorite is number five, which is to “Take advantage of every customer touch point.” This idea should be the center of designing the CX you want your customers to experience.

How to Improve Your Team’s Customer Service by Evelina Brown

(TechDay) A company’s customer service team is at the forefront and represents the company. If they don’t have the skills to support customers when they need it, they’re going to continue to lose them. Continue reading to learn some of the best ways to take your customer service to the next level.

My Comment: Here’s another list! Consider this line from the article: “Having great customer relationships is a result of great customer service.” Is it that simple? There is much that goes into “great customer service.” This article goes on to share nine ideas. There’s one idea that shows up early in the article but is not part of the actual list. It mentions speed. Today, most customers want speed. I don’t disagree, but remember what they really want, and that is the right answer. Getting someone to a customer service rep quickly who doesn’t give the customer the correct information destroys your goal of delivering a good experience.

To Build Love for Your Brand, Focus on Customer Experience and Innovation by Hang Nguyen

(VentureBeat) Do you have a brand you just can’t live without? Maybe you’re a geek for Apple products, buy all your shoes from Zappos or simply refuse to get your groceries anywhere but Trader Joe’s. These companies might not appear to share much in common, but all three are household names with extraordinarily loyal followings. Their success stems from the ability to deliver exceptional customer experiences and develop innovative products and services that customers can’t get anywhere else. Consumers don’t just like these brands — they love them.

My Comment: Wouldn’t you like to be the brand or company your customers can’t live without? (Of course, you would!) The author is an associate professor at Michigan State’s Broad College of business. He surveyed 20,000 consumers and 152 brands over the past 12 years to understand how “brand love” drives profits. There’s plenty of ideas and examples in this excellent article.

‘I’m a Customer Service Agent—For Best Results, Don’t Do These 3 Things When Complaining’ by Helen Carefoot

(Well+Good) If you have a problem with a product or service and need assistance to get it resolved, there’s a good chance you’ll interact with a customer service agent. Whether the conversation involves jumping on a phone call and braving hold music, corresponding via email or chat bot, or even talking in person, such conversations have the power to be legitimately positive and helpful or a source of frustration in their own right. The good news is that you have some control in how things ultimately go. To get the best results you can, a customer service representative says it’s crucial to know what not to do when complaining.

My Comment: When you call a company to complain, are you abrupt or impatient with the customer support agent? Do you yell – or worse, do you cuss? (In our customer service research, 40% of the thousand+ consumers we surveyed admitted to yelling at a customer service agent. 33% admitted they cussed.) This short article has “3 things to avoid when complaining.” So the next time you have a complaint, read this article.


Why Your Entire Company Should Get Customer Service Training by Josh Centers

(TextExpander) Here’s an open secret: everyone at TextExpander—even our CEO—spent a week working customer service as part of our onboarding. Shep Hyken, a top influencer in customer service, says, “Customer service is not a department. It is a philosophy to be embraced by every employee – from the CEO to the most recently hired.”

My Comment: Our friends at TextExpander wrote an excellent article about the power of the entire company getting customer service training – not just people on the front line. It leads with one of my favorite sayings: Customer service is not a department. It’s a philosophy to be embraced by every employee – from the CEO to the most recently hired! This important article will help you understand the value of training everyone on how they fit into your customer service strategy.

CX Expert, Shep Hyken Hosts Interview Series with Relay CEO, Matt Gillin by Relay Network

(Relay Network) Our CEO, Matt Gillin, had the opportunity to speak with Customer Service & CX Expert, Shep Hyken about all things customer engagement, and how Relay is shaking up the space in a meaningful way with our solution, the Relay Feed. In three separate interviews, all featured below, Matt and Shep broke down important topics including: Truly Personal vs. Personalized Experiences, The Dominant Interface for Engagement Today: Scrolling Feeds, and Customer Dormancy and Its Impact on an Organization.

My Comment: This article includes three short interviews I did with Matt Gillin, the CEO of Relay. In the interviews, I ask Matt about the difference in personal versus personalized experiences, the concept of scrolling feeds and how they can be applied to almost any business, and how “customer dormancy” impacts an organization.

Show Your Customers Some Love .. the Corporate Love by Ted Ings

(Center for Performance Improvement®) When you love someone, you find ways to show your appreciation. A special note, a little gift, or an intimate dinner tells them that you care. Valentine’s Day is an opportunity to express that appreciation, not just in a romantic way with your significant other but to your customers as well.

My Comment: This short article is about showing your customers a little love. While the theme is Valentine’s Day, I believe you can show a little love to your customers (and employees) every day of the year. Take two minutes to read the article, and you’ll have several ideas you can use immediately.

Shep Hyken is a customer service/CX expert, award-winning keynote speaker, and New York Times bestselling author. Learn more about Shep’s customer service and customer experience keynote speeches and his customer service training workshops at Connect with Shep on LinkedIn.


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