Have you ever had a customer service experience with a business in which you could tell that they could care less about you and they didn’t care if you knew it?  How aggravating is that?  And on the opposite end of the spectrum have you ever had an experience with a business or a service that completely blew you away and gave you much more than you thought you were paying for?

Of course everyone has horror stories about a bad customer service experience.  But what about the businesses you have used that went above and beyond to serve you?  What exactly is it that makes an experience with a business an exceptional one?  People work hard for their money and when they spend it they want to feel that they are being appreciated for choosing to spend it with you!  Everyone no matter who they are wants to feel like they are cared about and being treated special.

Here are a few examples of some things that I have noticed that made me feel extra appreciated for my business:

  1. The doctor that personally calls you back to check in on you and gives you an update on your health status without having to wait weeks before you know what is going on.
  2. The hotel staff that greets you warmly and seems genuinely happy to have you staying with them.
  3. The lawyer that makes a special trip to your home to execute your will so that you don’t have to get a babysitter.
  4. The waitress that refills your drink without you having to ask when she has 20 tables to wait on.
  5. The gas station attendant that takes a minute to clean your windshield and check your oil.
  6. The salesperson in a department store that offers to bring another pair of pants to the dressing room so that you don’t have to get dressed to go back out on the floor to get another size. (And of course, it’s always the smaller size!)
  7. A 5 minute neck massage you weren’t expecting while you are waiting for your nails to dry after a manicure.
  8. A cute little seasonally fitting bandana on your doggie after they have been groomed.
  9. A handwritten thank you note, a birthday card or a holiday greeting.

These are just a few examples of things that businesses can do to make their customers and clients feel appreciated.  Of course some of these are more expensive or harder to accommodate than others, but the general idea should be to think out of the box.  If you don’t keep your customers and clients happy you won’t have much of a business.  And staying in business is one of your top goals, right?  You must always remember it is much more expensive to find new clientele than to keep and maintain the ones you have.

What are some other ideas in your industry that have worked to help keep the level of customer service in your business great?

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6 thoughts on “Customer Service: What Makes You Feel Valued?”

  1. Brava Andrea… You really hit a cord for me. I believe most business owners want to do more to let their customers know how valued they really are. But either the grind of the day or lack of a simple process to do so holds them back to do so. I was lucky enough to grow up in a time of core business values such as “the customer is always right” were in still in place. To move ahead and win in todays world we need to again pay attention to the basic core values you nicely laid out in your post. Thanks for the reminder. I look forward to hearing more for you.

  2. Andrea:
    In response to your inquiry, in my industry of Law, it seems that merely answering my own phone is a great customer service technique. It gives the caller an introduction to the level of customer service my clients receive. I cannot tell you how many people cherish an attorney who gets on the phone immediately to help guide them as to what course of action should be taken next. They tend to be grateful. The next time I meet them face to face, they already have a preconceived opinion about me. “He makes himself available”

    Imagine getting an AT&T or American Express employee on the line immediately without being switched through a maze of remote options and red tape.

  3. Thanks Bill and Craig!

    Yes Bill, I agree that the daily grind of work does sometimes keep you from going that extra step to show you value your customers and clients, but I think it is probably the most fun part of work for me. I enjoy the diversity from the grind of the everyday responsibilities in being able to get creative!

    And Craig, it is absolutely frustrating when you are trying to speak to someone and all you get is the runaround with the phone system. It is so important to make your clients feel that you are available to them, especially in your field where people need the reassurance that they are doing the correct thing.

  4. Hi Andrea.

    I found this blog extremely interesting since in the past week I have had two exceptional experiences; one with a customer service representative at Verizon, when I was trying to figure out why my “smart- droid- phone” seemed smarter than me; the other with Audio Acrobat when I was struggling with how to email my teleseminar, “It Really Isn’t a Secret.”

    Being new to all this modern technology, sometimes it is overwhelming, but in both cases the customer service was outstanding. So outstanding that I made it a point to ask for the name of a Verizon supervisor I could comment to, and told Brian at Audio Acrobat how wonderful it is to call them. They never say, “It’s listed on our webpage.” Instead they take me by the hand and walk me through always offering more help in the future.

    People are quick to complain, but how many of us take the time and make the effort to say, “Thanks for treating me so special?”

  5. Very thought provoking Andrea

    In this day and age, we can sometimes rely too much on technology to service our clients, and can easily forget that it’s the personal relationship and interpersonal contact that keeps our clients satisfied with us.

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