Exceeding expectations – service or delivery?
Do you really mean it?
Great customer service isn’t a convenient statement for business to slap on a mission statement. It’s not a gimmick nor is it a side-line for those filling a job card out while doing a PhD. Great service is serious business and it starts with a philosophy dedicated to an attitude. It takes an application of intuition and empathy and researching expectations to fashion exceptional service.
To present your business, through to delivery of product, is the greatest opportunity to showcase and promote who you are. Service – to deliver what has been ordered. It is one of the most powerful blends of adverting, suggestive selling and relationship building a business can have. The best opportunity for the client to experience you. You have to mean it.
Corporate image vs social media
The effort companies go to promoting ‘loyalty’ cards and ‘no claim bonuses’ to their customers. With an endless supply of catch-phrase advertising at giant financial costs they build an illusion that each client is special. One who deserves the very best. Yet it only takes a phone call or a face-to-face interaction to realise that maybe the advertising dollars could have been better spent elsewhere.
Take the national insurance company who openly prides themselves on putting the customer first. Upon investigation the conditions are extraordinary. If a client does not meet these conditions, they are refused. The advertising budget has become a punchline, a cautionary tale in the social media reviews. Social media could have worked for them, for free.
Turn a client into a fan
Don’t you just love a business who knows you? Who understands that you have a want and need and that both are entirely separate. The ‘want’ may be car insurance, the ‘need’ is to be understood by a professional who can recommend the best policy. Who can point out the areas you should focus on. Who speaks like they know the industry, the pros and the cons. Can inform you of the finer detail in an engaging conversation, not just a tick box.
I called in and the account manager greeted me by my name. Asked if I got the paperwork through? He always sounds so happy to hear from me. Are there any questions you need answering? And look don’t sign it off just yet, you have a week’s grace, send it in at the end of the month – let me save you money. He notes I bought the car two months ago, a Honda. He asks – so are you enjoying the car? For me getting a new car is incredibly exciting, you must be thrilled sir, glad you phoned me – I love looking after new clients. He again acknowledges my name. I am now his greatest fan.
To Exceed Expectations or not?
I wanted my new car, my pride and joy, to be covered with a great policy. I needed someone to understand how I felt about getting a new car and guide me through suitable options. Not to fit in with their way-of-doing-things or answer a tick box. And guess what – I pay more per month than anyone else charges, purely because of the service I get. So how much is your client really worth? Do you exceed expectations, or do you just say you do? Consider that one could be making you a fortune – an investment the future. The other could be eroding your business. As for me I am heading onto social media, singing my new companies’ praises.