In a recent newsletter I shared a number of customer service questions to ask yourself and your team. These were meant to be “conversation starters” and they managed to spark a lot of good conversation via feedback and ideas from our Shepard Letter readers and our YouTube video subscribers.
One of the most popular customer service questions was the first one, which was:
What three things do you do best that differentiates you from your competitors?
These must be benefits that the competitors won’t be able to say about themselves. For example, if you say, “We provide great customer service,” or, “Our people are really friendly,” don’t think the competition doesn’t say the same thing. They do. By the way, whatever you come up with needs to be important to the customer. It shouldn’t just be different. It should be a benefit. It should make a difference. Some better examples might be:
- We are the only manufacturer that can offer a 24 hour turn-around on special orders.
- Or, we are the only seafood restaurant in town that catches their own fish daily.
- We are the only store in our area that is open 24/7, in case you need something in the middle of the night or on a holiday when other stores are closed.
That question sparked some great conversation with a colleague, Dennis Snow, a wonderful speaker who worked at Disney for 20 years. We did a Google Hangout together, which I refer to as a Customer Service Hangout, and he has a very cool customer service question:
What three things do you want your customers to say about you when they walk away?
This is part of what you promise your customers. It’s your brand. While your competition may be able to deliver on some similar things, you still want your customers saying this specifically about you. Some examples might be:
- They have the most knowledgeable people that always have the answers to my questions.
- Those people are the friendliest people I have had the privilege of working with.
- Whenever I make an appointment with that business, I can always count on them being on time.
Dennis’s question perfectly complements the question about what differentiates you from your competitors. One question is the why and the other question is the what.
Here are the three reasons why you should do business with us, and these are the three things we want you to experience when you do business with us. You really need both.
If you come up with the answers to these questions, you’ve just doubled your Triple Threat. I guess that makes you a Sextuple Threat!
Shep Hyken is a customer service expert, professional speaker and New York Times bestselling business author. For information contact (314)692-2200 or www.hyken.com. For information on The Customer Focus™ customer service training programs go to http://www.thecustomerfocus.com. Follow on Twitter: @Hyken
(Copyright ©MMXIV, Shep Hyken)