Is Your Customer Service Remarkable | Orange Man Against Crowd

Is Your Customer Service Remarkable?

What makes your company and your service stand out from the crowd? Do your customers rave about your business when speaking with friends and family? Are your customers thinking about the standards of excellence created by your business when they are engaged in experiences elsewhere?

To be remarkable is to be remarked upon — and hopefully in a positive way.

To be remarkable is to stand out from the pack — and to shine by comparison.

Is Your Customer Service Remarkable | Orange Man Against Crowd

How does your organization compare to the following?

Your Industry

Your industry sets the baseline for customer expectations. Customer expectations for a fast food experience are far different than for a fine dining experience, and the bar for being remarkable is much lower (lower, does not mean easier to achieve, however).

Your Competition

No matter what the expectations set by your industry, you will be judged by the best performing competitor your customer has frequented. I noticed a new Windows/PC retail store is opening at a local mall. Setting aside product quality for a moment, for the Windows store concept to work, they will have to improve upon what Apple has done in their stores. Apple has created the expectation; Microsoft now has to exceed it.

Your Past

Our organizations set their own expectations for repeat customers. What will you do to be remarkable on the 5th visit or the 9th purchase? We have to remember that we have created our own expectations in the past and while being remarkable does not mean upping the ante on every interaction, it does mean executing consistently and occasionally delivering extra-WOW moments that meet or exceed our past remarkable moments.

Everything Else

Are you remarkable compared to the rest of the world? What if the standards set by your industry and your competition are so bad that simply exceeding them slightly would still create a customer experience that is poor compared to, well, everything else.

If you are in the used car industry, would it be enough to just have a cleaner lot than the typical used car business or would you need to go further still to exceed the limits of your industry and make people want to come back? That is what CarMax did when they setup used car dealerships that got rid of haggling and looked like major auto dealerships.

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The first step to being remarkable is knowing what you have to do to achieve it, and this entails knowing what your customers’ expectations are and where they come from. Your service and your customer experience should be dictated by understanding your customer — what they want and how they want to receive it.

However, we do not operate in a vacuum, and our customers do not live in one. You can spend forever and a day studying your customers and figuring out what you believe is the ultimate customer experience — and how will it serve you if the solution you devise is still below that of your most direct competitor?

To be remarkable, we must do that which is worth remarking upon. And to do that, we just have to do it better than everyone else.

Is your organization remarkable?

About 

By Adam Toporek. Adam Toporek is an internationally recognized customer service expert, keynote speaker, and workshop leader. He is the author of Be Your Customer's Hero: Real-World Tips & Techniques for the Service Front Lines (2015), as well as the founder of the popular Customers That Stick® blog and co-host of the Crack the Customer Code podcast.

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4 replies
  1. Bill Dorman
    Bill Dorman says:

    We have our moments. Because so many things can go wrong with insurance, I think a lot of people have an expectation that it will not be a good experience if you have to call your agent.

    However, because things can go wrong, it creates opportunities; and it’s these opportunities is where we can shine at times.

    We have a good culture at LUI and it is built around taking care of and servicing the customer. If we stink up that end of it, our customers will definitely go down the road.

    Reply
    • Adam Toporek
      Adam Toporek says:

      You have such an interesting industry Bill, because you’re key touchpoints are selling the policy and when stuff goes really wrong. I guess you have to make sure you’re remarkable in a good way when the stuff hits the fan, because you’re only going to get one shot to deliver.

      Reply
  2. Josh
    Josh says:

    Customer service is so poor in so many places and industries it seems to be a great way to distinguish a company from the competition.

    You are correct about the value in comparing yourself to your competition and using that to help gauge where you could or should be.

    Reply

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