Welcome to the Monthly Mash, a mashup of tools, tales and tips on customer service and the customer experience from around the blogosphere.
Volume 22: August 2013
Thoughts on the Customer: The Customer’s Invisible Rules
We all have too many rules, and our personal rules can be some of our greatest sources of conflict and unhappiness.
Our customers have rules as well. In customer service, we refer to them as expectations, but here’s the catch: the word expectations is not strong enough to represent how some customers feel.
Sometimes the customer’s view of what, when, and how something should happen is so strong, so fixed, that when we fail to live up to it — we get an upset customer instead of just a disappointed customer.
Often with customers, we are faced with a divergence between the strength of the customer’s reaction and what we see as the level of the service failure.
In these cases, it is helpful to remember that while we think we failed to meet an expectation, the customer thinks we violated a rule. And therein lies the difference between disappointed and disgruntled.
The Month in Customer Service Blogging
A collection of the best posts about customer service and the customer experience we read this past month.
- How Do You Quantify the Value of Self-Service? – An interesting calculation for determining what self-service is worth based on the cost of a customer service rep handling the situation.
- How To Promote Your Bar or Restaurant Using Customer Testimonials – Six tips for restaurant owners on how to use testimonials to promote their business.
- So Your Customers Are Showrooming? Big Deal – This realistic attitude toward showrooming can help retailers stay in business, even if their customers do it.
- 7 Reasons the Customer Is Often Wrong – A great guide for consultants or teams who work with customers on long-term projects.
- What Are Your Employees Doing When You’re Not Around? – Many managers would rather not know, but not knowing can be detrimental to your customers’ experience.
- Why Employees Don’t Pass Along Customer Complaints – If you rarely receive customer complaints from your front line employees, then read this article immediately!
- Customer Service: Start With The End In Mind – Thoughts about whether customers or employees should be the primary focus of a new company.
- How To Get More Customer Service Complaints! – Frequent customer complaints may not necessarily be a bad thing.
- Is Your Customer Routing Strategy Like A Paper Map? – A fantastic metaphor and strategy for how contact center routing should operate.
- 10 Companies With Excellent Customer Service – Can’t say I agree with number 6, but what do you think?
- Come In As Strangers, Leave As Friends – If you succeed in making your customers feel like friends, you could earn their loyalty for a long time.
- Why New Customer Rewards Stink For The Rest Of Us – A lesson for businesses that loyal customers deserve rewards and appreciation just as much as new customers do.
- Could You Compete Against a Customer Experience Giant? – Smaller retailers must be prepared to top the customer experience of their bigger and cheaper competitors.
- Loyalty Is Earned, Not a Given – A strong case for why loyalty must be earned and how easily it can be lost by a business.
- WOM Tip #215: Remarkable Thank-You Notes Amplify Customer Feedback – An incredibly creative and memorable way one customer service rep said thanks!
Someone Was Listening
Sometimes the most popular post from the previous month; sometimes just the one I liked best.
This month we were proud to debut When Customers Stick: Customer Retention by the Numbers (Infographic), our first CTS infographic! The infographic illustrates a few great customer retention statistics with some fun visuals and graphics. Take a look; we’d love to hear what you think!