Ten Customer Service Tips for Customer Loyalty Month

Customer Service Tip: We’re In Business to Serve Our Customers

Let me ask you a question: What is the function of your business?

Most often when asked this question, people answer, “To make money.”

But consider these important words from Dr. Theodore Levitt, senior professor at Harvard business School:

The function of every business and organization is to get and keep customers.

It is the goal of a business to make money – not the function. If you confuse the function with the goal, you may not reach your goal.

So, the important task which your business faces each day is getting and keeping customers.

Ten Customer Service Tips for Customer Loyalty Month

Customer Loyalty Month is every April. Thinking about what I could write or suggest, I read something that is unbelievable. The American Customer Satisfaction Index (www.theacsi.org) just released their latest survey and it indicated that customer satisfaction is at a two year low. While some of this has to do with economic issues, the industries surveyed indicate customer service problems as well. How can that be?

In a world where people have become extremely value conscious, one of the only ways to compete, outside of price, is with customer service. Create a better experience and you create better value. The companies that create the best experience and deliver the highest levels of customer confidence are the ones that stay in business longer and aren’t forced to sell their goods and service at thin or losing margins.

So, in honor of Customer Loyalty Month, here is a “Top Ten” list of customer service tips from my new book, “The Amazement Revolution.”

  1. Give your customer a membership experience. You don’t have to call them members, but treat them special.
  2. Make the customers’ problem your problem. By solving their problems and needs, you create a partnership.
  3. Create a brand promise that is so strong and compelling that it makes your customers think of you more as a partner than as a vendor.
  4. Get employees excited about working for you. An enthusiastic and positive work environment is felt by the customer.
  5. Make sure you have the right people in the “customer facing” jobs. Consider moving the ones that aren’t customer focused to other positions inside your organization.
  6. Send thank you notes.
  7. Consider a thoughtful gift for your customers. Not one that is expensive, but one that is unexpected, memorable and appreciated.
  8. Look at your customers as a community. Engage in conversations with them and listen to their ideas and suggestions. Make them part of your process for improvement.
  9. Teach everyone in your organization that when it comes to customer service, everyone needs to be a leader – and they should lead by example.
  10. Make it personal. People like doing business with people they know, they like and they trust. Take time to personally reach out to your customers to get to know them better and find out what they really need.
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