Looking at the definition above the word helpful really jumps out. It can make all the difference. Especially in light of the Consumer Reports Customer Service survey findings that were reported yesterday. The findings included 64% of respondents saying they had left a store because of poor customer service and 67% saying they had hung up the phone before receiving a solution to their problem. I know that I have encountered similar situations.
Recently, I saw a Groupon offer that I missed purchasing by minutes, so I sent a tweet to the company making the offer to see if there was a chance they would have another offer in the future…they responded…3 weeks later. When I didn’t originally receive a response, I sent an email to the company (normally wouldn’t go this far, but the savings would have been great), and a nice person responded by saying, “I don’t know, that information comes from corporate.” This company lost my business, but they almost had it.
Today’s #smchat will focus on offering great customer service and creating customer expectations for that service. I want to preface the chat by offering a couple of recommendations:
- Make it clear to your customers when and where they can expect service from you. (Some think that it is 24/7 and everywhere, I disagree. It is smart for companies to determine what is sustainable and fiscally feasible to offer to their customers.)
- Publish your service hours and contact information in each place that you are providing service. On Twitter, create a custom wall paper. On Facebook, list it in your profile. On your blog, on your website, etc…
- Where are you offering customer service to your customers?
- Do you “patrol” places that you aren’t offering service to see if there is a need there?
- Do you know what your customers are saying about you?
- How are you addressing customer service issues?