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Why Great Customer Service Can Still Lose You Customers

A common but potentially fatal flaw for any service based business it to mistake their customer experience for customer service itself. Admittedly, I think we’ve all been guilty of this before–I know I have. Of course, it’s recognizing this flaw and turning it around that can make all the difference.

With the focus for many organizations being zeroed in on employee training and improvement practices around customer service that’s offered, many businesses miss the point of a bad experience in the first place. In this scenario, the majority of resources a business has for customer service are spent on ensuring that each touchpoint during the customer’s journey creates an exceptional service experience. It’s a great tactic, but it certainly does not guarantee you have a happy customer at the end of the journey. After all, if the process of obtaining, using, or troubleshooting a service or product is faulty, the customer experience may still be a negative one despite ideal customer service.

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Why Customer Expectations Are Binary

Customer expectations are binary. You either exceed them, or you fall short. Similarly, if you’re trying to keep up with increasing consumer expectations, you’re fighting an uphill battle.

Amazon, no longer a small online bookstore by any measure, knows this. Their objective isn’t to meet expectations. Rather, their objective is to exceed customer expectations such that customer expectations increase by way of the service they provide. Scot Wingo, Co-Founder of Channel Advisor, calls this increasing customer expectation the “Amazon Effect.

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Data Doesn’t Have to be Complicated

The unprecedented expansion of markets into an online space has changed up the customer journey. That means that is has never been more important to connect with your potential customers on their terms– but for your sake, it should be done in a way that capitalizes on their established behaviors. Sound complicated? It’s not in today’s tech savvy world.

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What Technological Advances Have Taught Us

The rate of innovation is ever increasing. What would seem like a giant leap fifty years ago appears more like a small step today. Second, these innovations are changing the average consumer. Going from the world where connected technology was mostly a dream to such ubiquity where more humans have mobile phones than access to working toilets is nothing short of impressive.

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Making A Good First Impression

When it comes to your customers, it’s important to realize that building a relationship with them begins immediately.  When you meet someone face to face, you have about seven seconds to make an impression. Seven seconds! The truth is, your website probably doesn’t have much longer than seven seconds to keep the attention of your customers and your potential customers. Everything from the color palette you choose to the font you use speaks volumes of who you are as a company–and what you stand for.

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Amazing Technological Advances Part V

This is the final installment of amazing technological advances over the last sixty years. As you can see, our society (and the world) has come a very long way in just a short time. I, for one, am very excited to see what kind of tech advances will come to us down the road.

2004 – 19-year-old Mark Zuckerberg launches thefacebook.com in his dorm room as a Harvard sophomore.

2005 – YouTube is founded by former PayPal employees Chad Hurley, Steve Chen, and Jawed Karim. The idea was born at a dinner party in San Francisco the year before, inspired by two key events that year: Janet Jackson’s wardrobe malfunction at the Super Bowl and a devastating tsunami in the Indian Ocean.

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Amazing Technological Advances Part IV

The series continues! There have been some amazing technological advances over the last sixty years. Today, we take a look at some of the biggest tech advances since 1995.

1995 – Google begins as a research project by Larry Page and Sergey Brin. Both are Ph.D. students at Stanford University.

1999 – Kevin Ashton coins the term “the Internet of Things” (IoT) while working at Auto-ID Labs.Oracle executive Marc Benioff invites three friends to his San Francisco apartment. His business idea gets a lukewarm response. Cofounder Dave Moellenhoff doesn’t sugarcoat it, “You’re an idiot. That’s the stupidest thing. This is never going to work.” The group presses forward and launches Salesforce, one of the first enterprise cloud software services in the world. The company pioneered the concept of delivering enterprise applications via a simple website.

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Amazing Technological Advances Part III

Today offers us a lot of technology. Of course, before today’s tech existed, there were an awful lot of technological advances that had to be made. Here are some of the more prominent ones from the last forty years.

1983 – Motorola releases its first commercial mobile phone, known as the Motorola DynaTAC 8000X. The handset offered 30 minutes of talk-time, six hours standby, and could store 30 phone numbers. It cost nearly $4,000.10

1989 – Tim Berners-Lee, a British scientist at CERN, invents the World Wide Web. The Web was originally conceived and developed to meet the demand for automatic information-sharing between scientists in universities and institutes around the world. The first website at CERN – was dedicated to the World Wide Web project itself and was hosted on Berners-Lee’s NeXT computer. The website described the basic features of the Web; how to access other people’s documents and how to set up your own server.

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Amazing Technological Advances Since the 60’s Part II

With all of the technology available today, it’s hard to remember a time existed before tech was widely available. In Part II of my technological advances series, we dive even deeper into that tech that drove us toward today.

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Purple Goldfish Hall of Famer–Southwest Airlines

Hall of Fame Class of 2010–Southwest Airlines

I fly a lot for business. It seems that whenever I talk to people about air travel these days, however, there’s always a gripe. Poor customer service, rising costs, and increased delays seem to be a black cloud hanging over the majority of the airline industry. That being said, I personally look forward to my flight experiences. Southwest Airlines, with their happy staffers, bags fly free policy, and no change fees policy, are a beacon of light in the darkness.

THE ORIGIN

Perhaps you’ve noticed the huge heart that Southwest Airlines uses in their branding. True advocacy comes when you reach the heart of your customer–and Southwest Airlines knows this. In an industry that seems solely focused on their bottom line, Southwest Airlines continues to value their employees who in turn value their customers. Their customers value service and that is what this airline is all about.

WHY FREE BAGS AND NO CHANGE FEES?

In 2016, airlines made a reported $3.35 billion in baggage fees alone. Given that that stems from roughly $25 per bag, you can only imagine what a $200 charge fee is capable of making for an airline. Southwest Airlines is committed to putting that extra money in the pockets of their customers–and they know that such service gets them customers for life.

TAKEAWAY

When it comes to serving your customers, it’s important to look past your bottom line. This doesn’t mean that you have to go broke trying to please customers, but it IS important to realize there’s a big difference between being in business because you love it and being in business to make money.

Today’s Lagniappe (a little something extra thrown in for good measure) – Southwest Airlines helps to make a couple’s special day even more unforgettable.