Troy Hazard, author of the best-selling book “Future-Proofing Your Business”, offers these 10 tips for great customer service:
1. THE ANGRY CUSTOMER: In an argumentative situation, think of how you would feel in your customer’s shoes. Take time to consider his or her personality and position. The faster you start talking in your customer’s language, the quicker the route to an amicable result.
2. WHEN SERVICE GOES WRONG: Try these customer service tips practiced by an airline with flight problems: Acknowledge the problem and take time for face-to-face when possible. Anticipate the needs of the customer and make the customer comfortable. Communicate the solution and offer as much information as you can.
3. PERSONAL TOUCH: After buying a car, the salesman, would send information about things I was personally interested in. The salesman ended up selling $1.5 million to my friends through endorsement or referral.
4. TRUE CUSTOMER APPRECIATION: Sometimes we think we are rewarding our loyal customers when really we are offering them a bribe. A random thank you note that says, “Thanks for being a great customer, please accept this voucher as a sign of our appreciation” is a reward.
5. KEEPING IT REAL: When I owned an advertising business, I did not try to be what I was not. I did not make promises I could not keep. And it got me the client.
6. PROVE YOUR WORTH: Instead of trying to convince potential customers that you can do the job better than your competitor, simply demonstrate to them a service that your competitors simply won’t do.
7. THREE QUESTIONS OF CUSTOMER RELATIONSHIPS: Two of the most important aspects of building customer relationships are communication and consistency. Ask yourself:
* How often are you reaching out to your customers outside of the times they come to you?
* How often do you offer them something that is good for them, which has nothing to do with you selling them another product or service?
* How often do you train or retrain your staff on how to build better customer relationships?
8. INFORMATION OVER BRICKS AND MORTAR: There is only one way to truly build solid customer relationships — understand their needs and do not assume their expectations. Ask them why they purchase from you and how that purchase affects their lives. You can then use that data to develop a significant emotional connection.
9. ANTICIPATE EXPECTATIONS: Put yourself in your customers’ shoes, and think about what they will want tomorrow — and deliver that product or service today.
10. BE SOCIAL ON SOCIAL MEDIA: As you launch your business into the world of social media marketing, remember that it is just that — social. It’s a means for your customers to praise or punish you.
For more information by Troy Hazard about good customer service, visit his website at www.troyhazard.com.