5 Ways to Use Language to Thank Customers

5 Ways to Use Language to Thank Customers

5 Ways to Use Language to Thank Customers

As the Thanksgiving holiday approaches here in the United States, we thought it would be a great time to discuss a few different ways you can use language to express your gratitude to customers.

Thanking customers and telling them how much you appreciate them are important parts of the customer’s emotional journey, and it is important to remember that these expressions are only as valuable as they are authentic.

Sure, a team member can occasionally get away with a perfunctory “thank you”; yet, over time, customers can  sense when expressions of gratitude aren’t sincere. Read more

Who Owns the Customer Experience | rowing team

Who Owns the Customer Experience?

Who Owns the Customer Experience | rowing team

Who owns the customer experience?

This question has probably caused more organizational leaders to point fingers and reach for antacids than “why are we failing to meet projections?”

Of course, the easy answer, the consultant answer, is “everyone owns the customer experience.”

Drop the mic. Put the bill in the mail.

The real answer, however, is inherently more nuanced and complex. While everyone must take ownership of the customer experience in general, not everyone can own each part.

Organizations, especially large ones, simply can’t function effectively where employees exist in a vacuum of responsibility, in some amorphous, theoretical world where everyone finds exactly the right time and place to either serve the customer or to step aside for someone else to do so.

As business truisms go, “everyone owns the customer experience” does a good job of reaffirming the notion that every team member, whether on stage or off, has a part in the customer experience. Yet, it’s worse than useless in defining the execution of this principle.

In fact, in execution, it tends to run smack into another (and dare we say more definable) business aphorism: “When everyone is responsible, no one is.” Read more

The Peak-End Rule and Customer Experience | proposal at restaurant

The Peak-End Rule and Customer Experience

The Peak-End Rule and Customer Experience | proposal at restaurant

One key to designing great customer experience touch points is to understand the way our minds process and retain information.

Customers do not remember every moment of a customer experience equally. First impressions and primacy effects demonstrate that the beginning of an experience can have outsized importance.

Similarly, the peak-end rule informs us that specific portions of a customer’s experiences are more important than others in determining how the customer remembers the experience.

What is the peak-end rule? The peak-end rule states that we remember an experience by how we felt at its most intense moment and at the end, instead of an average of how we felt throughout.

Look at the picture above; what part of that dinner do you think both people will remember years later?

It is important to remember that the “most intense” moment can be positive or negative. This is one reason why an organization can do almost everything right yet the customer seems to focus on the one thing the organization got wrong.

Read more

5 Expert Tips for Customer Service Recovery | upset customer

5 Expert Tips for Customer Service Recovery

5 Expert Tips for Customer Service Recovery | upset customer

No matter how great a customer experience your organization provides, you will always have a need for service recovery.

Part of creating great customer experiences is not just designing fantastic, memorable experiences but planning and preparing for the service issues that inevitably occur.

No matter how good the product or service, no matter how effective the systems and procedures, every organization eventually drops the ball with a customer.

And even when they do everything perfectly from their perspective, they can still disappoint customers who had differing expectations.

No matter how good your customer experience, you will always need customer service. Read more

Hospitality Customer Service with Christoff J. Weihman | pic of Christoff

Exploring Hospitality Customer Service (Video)

Hospitality Customer Service with Christoff J. Weihman | pic of Christoff

In my conversation with hospitality service expert Christoff Weihman, we covered a number of topics surrounding hospitality customer service, including how it is evolving and how it differs from other service models.

How to Give 5-Star Hospitality Customer Service

Christoff believes that 5-Star service is about feeling – how customers feel during their experience with the organization and how they feel after they leave.

Christoff and I also discuss how hospitality organizations are using technology to improve experiences, and how they need to make sure staff is trained to communicate with customers around certain technological changes.

Make sure to check out Christoff’s insights in the video below. Read more

What Is an Internal Customer? | Office worker handing file

What Is an Internal Customer?

What Is an Internal Customer? | Office worker handing file

One of the more popular concepts in modern customer experience thinking is the idea of the internal customer. But who exactly are internal customers, and why do they matter?

An internal customer is anyone in the organization who needs assistance or interaction from another to fulfill their job responsibilities. This manifestation can happen in virtually any direction organizationally and is only limited to the the fact that one party in the relationship depends on another. Read more

Save Your Customer Service Team from Vampire Customers

Save Your Customer Service Team from Vampire Customers

Save Your Customer Service Team from Vampire Customers

Vampire customers exist in every organization.

You know the ones — the ones that are excessively needy, that are overly demanding, and that can often be downright unpleasant.

In short, the ones that suck the life out of your team.

If your organization is like most, then I’m willing to bet that a small handful of “problem” customers are responsible for the majority of your service challenges. It’s the principle of the 80/20 rule, but in customer service, it’s usually closer to the 95/5 rule or the 98/2 rule.

A very small number of customers create a great majority of the serious issues. Read more

3 Themes for National Customer Service Week 2016 | Team

3 Themes for National Customer Service Week 2016

3 Themes for National Customer Service Week 2016 | Team

National Customer Service Week 2016 is just around the corner!

Starting on Oct 3, National Customer Service Week is an opportunity for you and your team to shine a spotlight on the importance of customer service to your organization.

A good starting point for celebrating national customer service week is to adopt a theme for the event. Having a theme makes the event more manageable by enabling you to center the activities around a specific customer service concept.

The official theme for this year’s National Customer Service Week is “ONE GOAL, ONE TEAM, NO LIMITS.” Make sure to check our the International Customer Service Association’s website for more on the official theme and to request your NCSW celebration guide.

Below are three additional themes you can use in your organization for this year’s customer service week to either complement the official theme or to serve as a focal point based on the current needs of your team. Read more

How to Treat Customers: With Respect | Karate kids

How to Treat Customers: With Respect

How to Treat Customers: With Respect | Karate kids

You don’t have to be a customer service expert to know that respect is an immensely important part of customer service. In fact, we consider respect a cornerstone of any customer service philosophy, and we include “being disrespected” as one of our 7 Service Triggers, the seven customer service hot buttons that are guaranteed to ruin a customer experience. Read more

21 Ways to Not Make a Good First Impression with Customers | Employee smoking

21 Ways to Not Make a Good First Impression with Customers

21 Ways to Not Make a Good First Impression with Customers | Employee smoking

Research on first impressions confirms two very fundamental facts: first impressions happen rapidly and subconsciously.

The old adage is true: you never get a chance to make a first impression. Because once that impression is made, our tendency towards confirmation bias means we are looking for evidence to support that impression and ignoring evidence that contradicts it. In other words, first impressions are hard to overcome.

If the first impression is a positive one, that can work for us and our organizations. If the first impression is a negative one, then we start the relationship with a negative balance in our brand deposits account, so to speak.

In thinking about first impressions, I pondered the many ways organizations had made poor first impressions on me, and as a thought experiment, I set a timer for five minutes and tried to list as many ways as I could remember.  Read more