Updated: Aug 1, 2022
There are so many articles that cover how to deliver great customer service, how to improve on the overall customer experience, or even what good customer service looks like. Right? Well, here comes another one for you.
You learn something every day if you pay attention. ~Ray LeBlond
One's perspective on any given subject is an individual response. So for me, I love to learn from many sources and pick and choose what I feel meets my need or my interest. Regarding customer service, learning all we can about delivering a great experience is the responsibility of all service providers.
I recently had an experience that matched a well written article that I read called, 3 Fundamentals of Better Customer Experiences, by Toby Bottorf. He mentions that customers will tell you what they feel or what they experience is broken with the service they receive or company they do business with. Learning what the customer thinks and feels is the sweet spot on how you can make a difference. Let's take a look at Bottorf's 3 fundamentals:
"Talk to me like I'm a person." Companies should always ensure that anyone that communicates with the customer in any capacity does so in a professional manner, which involves many factors. I recently changed payroll companies. Through the set-up process I would receive emails from different departments requesting information. One person in particular would send me emails that were worded as if I was a payroll expert. She would use codes, acronyms, and payroll jargon that would lose me quickly. I needed access to all the information and details, but she needed to speak to me at my level of understanding ~ layman's terms. Even after 3 emails telling her I did not understand the codes and acronyms, she didn't get it. Bottorf says, "Be direct, and layer the information so I can learn what I need and ignore what I don't." And I will add, do so with the understanding your customer is not a expert in your business.
"Prove you know me." It's a little creepy when you click on a website looking for a product and the next time you are on Amazon or Facebook it's customized to your preferences. If the internet does it, shouldn't we expect customized preferences as a customer? There are so many opportunities missed where the customer could have been Wowed with using their preferences to surprise and delight them. Bottorf says, "People have very different functional and emotional needs at the beginning -- the 'confidence to start' -- than they do as established 'users' looking for guidance, troubleshooting and feedback to keep them engaged."
"Level with me." The Internet has given consumers power. They walk into any buying situation better informed. Bottorf mentions, "The increase in personalization has led to an uptick in product complexity and human anxiety. People want to know that there isn’t another, better deal out there. Don’t make it hard for them to figure that out." I recently helped my daughter buy a car. We found what we thought was a great deal, until the surprise came when what appeared to be an option that you could say yes or no too, was not a choice at all, and was built into the price, but we didn't learn this until we were doing the paperwork. It was a hook, and quite frankly, bad advertising. Borrorf says, "...creating a collaborative relationship between business and consumer gives people a reason to believe, and a way to create shared value. The lesson here, then, is: Find ways to share control so that customers feel ownership."
Use these fundamentals to check how your team or business engages with your customers. Is there room for improvement? Want us to help you get to the next level of better customer experiences?