A business’s return on investment is only as strong the priority it places upon client service. As Herb Kimble can attest, the success of a business hinges upon on an outstanding customer service plan. We’ve always known that customer service was crucial, but just how large of a role it plays in profit may be surprising. Did you know? According to Desk.com 81% of customers are more likely to give a company repeat business after receiving great customer service, and on average, the loyal customer is worth up to ten times as much as their first purchase. Not to mention, poor customer service is the primary reason for a business’s bad reputation. Given heightened competition and greater customer engagement through internet marketing and social media platforms, businesses can no longer maintain a competitive edge with “good” customer service. It needs to be exceptional.
Where to start? Today’s successful client service plan prioritizes convenience. This means that customers have easy access to product information both in store and online, experience an easy-to-use web interface on a company web page, and can order a product or arrange for a service in multiple ways. Convenience also means that when a problem arises, a company already has a strategy in place to readily resolve it. An exceptional client service plan remediates an issue with additional incentives and service that exceeds client expectation.
An effective customer service team understands the value of active listening. In the world of customer service, it’s our job to identify the problem and provide the best solution. Passive listening and inadequate attention stand in the way of customer satisfaction. In fact, if your company can convey active listening and sincerity while on the phone with a customer, you’ll be ahead of the game; 85% of consumers are currently dissatisfied with their customer service experiences on the phone.
Herb Kimble also believes that the most competitive client service plans also emphasize expertise! There are few things more valuable to a customer than a sales person who is ready to respond to any question about a product in detail. Exceptional client service emphasizes valuable product insight, as well as an understanding of the industry as a whole.
A client service plan that truly goes above and beyond to meet the needs of its customers is a great way to ensure positive feedback; this can be accomplished by treating each customer as an individual, speaking with sincerity, frequently using their first name, etc. Give more than a customer expects, survey the playing field and offer an extra incentives your competitors don’t.
Finally, today’s exceptional client service plan leverages social media to solicit customer reviews and feedback. The first step to improving customer service is to identify areas of weakness. Use your customers’ honest opinions from your social media customer review section to make continual adjustments.