Shep Hyken\'s Customer Service Blog

5 Top Customer Service Articles for the Week of March 4, 2019

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.

Why Is Customer Service So Bad? Because It’s Profitable. by Anthony Dukes and Yi Zhu

(Harvard Business Review) It’s a familiar scenario: A service provider fails to live up to your expectations and you feel some restitution may be in order. Yet, when you call customer service to voice a complaint, you’re faced with an automated voice menu, put on hold, or told that the agent is not authorized to refund your money.

My Comment: Interesting concept here. A little contrary to what we are used to; delivering bad service – actually not caring about delivering good service – because it doesn’t make a difference to the bottom line. Read this for an interesting perspective on why bad service can sometimes not have a negative impact on the bottom line, and even be profitable.


Even the Slightest Bit of Friction Can Derail Your Customer Experience. Here Are 2 Simple Ways to Eliminate It by Sonia Thompson

(Inc.) Don’t let your customer experience be remarkable for all the wrong reasons.

My Comment: When I talk about friction and customer service, I’m usually referring to convenience. However, the poor design of a product can also create friction, forcing the customer to the inconvenience of getting support. This article has a great example and two suggestions on how to create a friction-free design of your product.

How the Internet of Things is Changing Customer Service by Alan Finlay

(Relay) As we near the landmark year of 2020, the answers to once easy support questions are not as clear.

My Comment: The Internet of Things (IoT) is positively impacting the customer experience. This article focuses on home appliances, like TV’s, thermostats, and more, but it will give you insights into how some things we thought were space-aged technology just a few years ago are now reality. The future is here, and the customer experience is better because of it.

4 Brands That Mastered the Omnichannel Experience by Erin Ollila

(Smarter CX) Take a look at how 4 brands are mastering omnichannel customer experiences across different industries.

My Comment: The concept of omnichannel simply means a customer can connect with you, seamlessly, a number of different ways; in person, phone, message, social media channels, etc. Some companies do this better than others. Here are four short case-studies from four recognizable brands that may give you a few ideas on how to leverage omnichannel.

5 Ways to Improve Customer Retention With Email Marketing by Emil Kristensen

(Fourth Source) Fortunately, you can improve customer retention and improve customer relationships with email marketing.

My Comment: Is email marketing dead? I hardly think so, and this article makes the case. Email can add to your customer experience strategy, with a number of ways to give customers great content and keep them engaged. This is a comprehensive article with lots of detail.


CX Icons by Daniel Frank

(Tru Rating) We caught-up with Shep shortly after the publication of his latest book The Convenience Revolutionto find out why making life easy for the customer, is where businesses really need to be paying attention in 2019.

My Comment: I was recently interviewed about my latest book, The Convenience Revolution, by the fine people at TruRating. Their questions captured the main points about why eliminating friction and being easy to do business with is a competitive strategy that will disrupt competition and create fierce loyalty.

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 Follow on Twitter: @Hyken


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