Eight Lessons These Entrepreneurs Learned From Their Own Customer Service Experiences

Eight Lessons These Entrepreneurs Learned From Their Own Customer Service Experiences


While it’s often the horrible customer service experiences that go viral on social media or become the topic of discussion over dinner, when asked, most people could likely think of a time when they experienced really excellent customer service. From a friendly attitude to a personalized solution, there are plenty of reasons why these experiences might stick in our minds.

For the members of Young Entrepreneur Council, positive customer service experiences are learning opportunities for the future. Below, they share what they learned from specific customer service interactions and why they chose to implement these lessons into their own company processes.

1. A Friendly, Approachable Attitude Goes A Long Way

One time, I ordered a variety pack of Melinda’s hot sauces. Instead of the flavors I ordered, the bottles I got were all the same and not necessarily something I wanted to try. I contacted their customer service, and the support agent sent an order for the variety pack of hot sauce, upgraded it to one-day delivery and told me to keep the other bottles because they made the mistake, not me. Amazing! I received my bottles the next day and have become a brand loyalist. My takeaway from this experience was this: A friendly, approachable and helpful customer support team can change everything. I probably wouldn’t have ordered again if they hadn’t been so kind. Now, most of my friends and family know about Melinda’s sauces and I’ve made multiple purchases since. – John Brackett, Smash Balloon LLC

2. Own Up To Your Mistakes (Even If The Customer Doesn’t Notice Them)

I had my car serviced and was unable to pick it up during their business hours, so they said they would leave my car keys in a lock box and send me a code to pick up my car after hours. I completely forgot to pick up my car because it wasn’t that important to me, and the next day I got a call from management sincerely apologizing for not doing what they said they would do. They then said the next oil change was free of charge and that they know my time is valuable and were sorry if they wasted any of it. I was so impressed by their accountability and integrity because I would not have even known that they forgot to do anything had they not brought it up. I use that experience as an example for my team to show them that when a mistake is made, to not hope the customer doesn’t notice, but to own up to our mistake. – Givelle Lamano, Lamano Law Office

3. Excellent Customer Service Is About Authenticity And Timeliness

I’ve had great experiences with other app companies via the Apple App Store and Google Play Store. After I left a review, especially an unfavorable one, I always heard back within 24 hours. This is why I’ve implemented this strategy in my own company. We aim to answer all negative and positive reviews within 24 hours. Other leaders should realize the importance of timeliness. If you’re unresponsive for longer than 48 hours, that sends a message to your customers that you don’t care about them and whether or not they like your product, which will cause your company harm in the long run. Authenticity is another must. Don’t sound like a robot when responding to customers. Instead, make them feel like they’re talking to a real person. – Simon Bacher, Ling App

4. You Should Give The Customer A Reason To Tell A Great Story

One of the most important aspects of customer service is how the business handles their own mistakes. When Starbucks gets my drink wrong, they remake it on the house with a smile. Sometimes, they’ve included vouchers for future drinks if the wait was long or if they had to remake it multiple times. The lesson is that doing right by your customers and meeting every problem with a smile and the will to solve it is a long-term investment. Don’t focus on the numbers of one specific negative experience a customer might have. Focus on the unmeasurable ROI of the story they’re going to tell other people about your company. Give them every reason to tell a great story about how professionally and kindly your team solves problems. – Tyler Bray, TK Trailer Parts

5. Focused, Personalized Attention Increases Customer Satisfaction

I learned a beautiful customer service lesson in a retail shop. I was looking for baby products, and there were no clear directional maps for that. When I asked a customer service employee for help, instead of directing me, he walked me to that particular section and helped me find the exact item. This simple notion supercharged my buying experience. I learned that a little personalized attention could leave a permanently positive impression on your customers. I shared this experience with my entire team and told them to inject similar customer personalization efforts into our business. Customizing an experience for an individual can lead to increased satisfaction levels. This is because the customer feels that the company has taken the time to understand their specific needs and wants. – Kelly Richardson, Infobrandz

6. Always Aim To Anticipate Your Customers’ Needs Before They Do

I was at a hotel eating lunch when a man at another table dropped his fork onto the floor. Almost immediately, the head server picked it up and gave him a clean fork that she happened to have with her. I was so impressed that it happened so quickly and smoothly that it made a tremendous impression on me. It was almost as if she anticipated his need and was there waiting for him to realize his need too. That gave me the idea for my approach to customer service: We have to know our customers so well that we can almost anticipate their needs and desires before they do. Providing something extra that they want helps build relationships and endears us to them. – Baruch Labunski, Rank Secure

7. Customer Service Should Start Before A Problem Occurs

Excellent customer service can make or break your small business. One example that comes to mind occurred when I bought email marketing software for my business. I figured I would buy the tool and learn it on my own. The next day, I got an email from their support team asking if I would like to schedule a hands-on tutorial so I could learn the ropes and start seeing results. I appreciated this proactive approach to customer service, and it really did help me get comfortable and convert my first visitors into email subscribers. I liked this approach so much that I started using a similar strategy and have managed to boost our engagement and retention rate. – John Turner, SeedProd LLC

8. Your Team Will Treat Customers The Way You Treat Them

I remember one particular instance when I was at McDonald’s. I saw the manager greeting and talking to the staff in a very friendly way, treating them as they would treat the customers. I realized that if you treat your employees well, they will in turn treat your customers well. This is an important lesson for all leaders to learn. Creating a positive and supportive work environment is essential to maintaining a happy and productive culture. When employees feel valued and appreciated, they are more likely to provide excellent customer service. This was certainly the case at McDonald’s. The manager’s positive attitude and friendly demeanor created a pleasant work environment that led to excellent customer service, which is a lesson I have tried to implement in my own company. – Abhijeet Kaldate, Astra WordPress Theme


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