Commandments 4-7

I’m continuing my post regarding the Top 10 Commandments of Customer Service. Today, I’m covering commandments 4-7.

4. Make customers feel important appreciated. Amen! Your customers make your business possible and you should certainly appreciate them. Re-read my series on service calls. There are a few things I suggest that companies do to make their customers feel important. See what type of difference it could make? How do you feel when you receive a thank you card? It makes you feel good. How do you feel when a company pays attention and does something to make you feel appreciated? It feels great! Chances are, the company will gain some respect and likely, some business.

5. Help the customer understand your systems. People hate industry or company-specific jargon or terms. They also hate having to learn how to use things. Something that customers hate even more is not having any ways to learn how to use things.

If you have a complicated product, have a few ways for customers to learn how to use it. Have tutorials, have manuals, have FAQs, have videos – whatever it takes. Ask your customers what you can do to make your product easier to understand and use. You may be surprised about what they say.

Here is a story reflecting an experience I had. I was working with a client who happened to deal with storage. For computer savvy folk, what a gigabyte or a megabyte (maybe even a terabyte!) is fairly clear. For someone new to the Internet or online storage? It’s like another language.

I suggested the client to explain what a gigabyte was. A few days later, they posted a page on their site with definitions of terms. Their explanation for a gigabyte? “A gigabyte is 1024 megabytes.” I told the client that the explanation needed a bit more work. This is what I suggested. “A gigabyte is 1024 megabytes. In less technical terms: your average song is about 4 megabytes. This means, about 500 songs equals about 1,000 MB, or about 1 Gigabyte.”

The 4 megabyte song example isn’t 100% accurate, but it helps potential customers who don’t know that much about storage understand the term gigabyte. Try and do that when explaining terms for your product or service.

6. Know the power of “Yes.” Saying yes is so important to customer service. The advice the articles gives (when you get a request that is at least somewhat feasible, say Yes and then figure out how to do it). This is going the extra mile, and your customers will appreciate it. Say no as little as possible and do what you can to fulfill your customers’ requests and make them happy.

7. Know how to apologize. People make mistakes. Everyone realizes that. Admit when/if you make a mistake and offer the customer a sincere apology. Don’t blame others – try to fix the problem. Respond to complaints accordingly and make it so customers know where to voice their feedback and concerns.

I’ll finish the mini-series with commandments 8-10 later this week. Tomorrow’s post is about an experience I had related to an excellent follow up experience. It definitely relates to commandment four and is exemplary of a well handled follow up.