“There’s only so many times someone is going to come back for a good cup of coffee … if your attitude sucks.” -Gabriel De La Garza, owner of Jitterz Coffee Bar
These words couldn’t be more true. When it comes to owning a business, customer service plays a lifeline to the people who will either make it or break it.
“Too many places are ‘forcing’ employees to be nice to the customer, but you can tell they aren’t being sincere. I think authenticity also plays a big part in good customer service,” De La Garza added.
RGVision Media agrees with De La Garza wholeheartedly. We believe the way you treat the client plays a giant role in the success of the company, and whether you will be recommended. Clients want to know they are making a good investment in you and your company. They want to feel as if they will somehow come out better in the end for spending money on your services or product — which they rightfully should. Nothing brings more confidence from clients than the feeling that your company or product can be trusted, and was a wise investment. Satisfaction is also a big concern. Customers want to know that if for some reason something went wrong, they would be able to contact you, or get a refund, and that you will willingly and gladly hear out their concern. We all dread the customer service hotlines that have automated voices asking you to click 10 buttons before you speak to an actual person. The reason is because we lose value, and our assistance feels cheapened.
So RGVision Media took the time to compile what we believe are the catalysts to good customer service.
First, we must ask, why is good customer service so important?
- Clients want an experience to look forward to: You probably own a business that has a fair share of competition. What is going to keep your customers coming to you when they can go somewhere else? Believe it or not, it’s not a lower price. Lower price doesn’t always indicate quality. Most of the time, people will pay more for a comparable product just because they get such excellent customer service.
- You are part of a web: Nothing beats good old-fashioned word of mouth. When you create strong business bonds with customers who trust you, they will tell all their friends about you — who will then also become your customers.
- Your customers are who keep you in business: Your business can either die, survive, or thrive. Think about it — if you sell a product, you wouldn’t have to worry about cutting production costs if you could just increase your sales.
What does good customer service look like?
- Be authentic: When you address a customer, they want to feel as though you are treating them individually. Making sure to laugh at jokes. Carrying on a conversation is also a good trait. Look them in the eyes when you talk. Just be personable overall, and don’t just repeat assigned catchphrases that don’t actually create engagement.
- Don’t upsell: The term “sleazy car salesman” comes to mind. Clients want to know you are not in this business to simply “close the sale.” They want to feel like they can trust that your product is quality. Don’t over-promise or create on-the-spot features just to close a sale. Being honest is key to whether people keep coming back.
- Don’t think your product will sell itself: Ideally, the quality of your product should sell itself, meaning people trust they are paying for something that either meets or exceeds their expectations. But don’t think that it is a reason to neglect the customer themselves. People will gladly find other options that are more pleasantly accommodating. Think of a fancy uptown shoe or purse store. If you walk in underdressed, they treat you like a servant. No one respects this kind of treatment, and they are likely to look for something else, even if the product is less in quality.
- Getting to know your customer: What are the likes and dislikes of your customers? What do they want to see more of? Less of? Then accommodate them.
- Be available: Customers want to know they can reach you when you say you can be reached. Never returning phone calls, or never answering your phone is a big turnoff.
- Be consistent: Don’t just deliver once. It needs to be an ongoing satisfaction. Again, trust and honesty are key.
We hope that you will read this, and it will inspire you to keep doing a great job as a fellow entrepreneur. Remember, customer service is probably going to be the number one thing that keeps you in business, and we can’t wait to see you thrive. Now go out there and wrangle in some customers with a great smile and welcoming attitude.