Business owners and operators all have a chance to offer much better service, but it requires resources such as time and energy plus a real commitment that has to start from the top and include everybody in the business. There can be no better way of building a profitable business than by being absolutely committed to offering the best customer experience as possible.
High levels of service to customers do not cost a lot of money and they certainly don’t take too much time, but they do require a strong belief in the value of customer service and how it is a major contributor to the future success and profit.
We are all consumers and customers and when we are in the business of providing a service to customers, we can’t help ourselves. We always assess the level of service of any business we deal with, either as a customer or supplier. It is so refreshing to go to a business and be pleasantly surprised by the level of customer service we encounter. Over the years, we have become accustomed to receiving less that average levels of service and when we come across a business that excels in this area, we can’t help but notice it.
It’s clear that those businesses to provide high levels of customer service have legions of loyal customers. The businesses grow by word of mouth advertising and their customers remain loyal through the good times and bad times. It is not surprising that these businesses survive recessions and economic downturns whilst their competitors who don’t supply any sort of service, disappear.
If you want to start a lively conversation, sit down with some friends and complain about a business that gave you a horrible customer service. Before you know it, somebody has topped your story and recounted an even worse experience. Now sit back and listen and watch as the conversation enters a downward spiral of complaints and horror stories about businesses that should not survive.
Because we are consumers, we use word-of-mouth marketing in reverse. Instead of telling people how well a business treats their customers, we instinctively take the negative path and ensure that the maximum amount of people hear about our example of appalling customer service. We had no hesitation in naming the business, explaining where it is, how to avoid it and what it has done to us. We create a bad advertisement for that business and earnestly advise all the people we know not to do with them. The cost of this to the business cannot be calculated easily but it is several times the cost of their marketing budget.
These negative experiences cause us to adopt a different opinion. First of all, we have become cynical about advertising and advertising messages. Secondly, we tend to believe friends and family about products and services. Thirdly, we won’t buy anything without a recommendation from somebody that we trust.