Every company in the world claims that they have over average customer service. However, we all hear stories about companies treating their customers poorly. I think the problem is that a lot of businesses include the words “great customer service” in their mission statement but they don’t really talk about specifics. It’s all about specifics. These are some ideas to help you win your customers’ hearts.
Follow Up After a Sale
Do you contact people after they buy something from you? This is a great way to learn what they like about your company and what you can improve. A lot of people don’t do that because they’re afraid that they might hear something they don’t want to hear. You need to deal with this; it’s your responsibility as a business. Learn what your weaknesses are and fix them. After a while, I can guarantee that most of the customers you call will have great news for you.
When You Screw Up, Apologize
The way some companies apologize makes me really mad: “Well, if we did something wrong, then we’re sorry.” Seriously? YES, you did something wrong, so don’t say “if”; take responsibility for the screw up. This is what I say when I screw up: “We really screwed up. I’m so sorry. You have no idea how bad I feel about this. We already fixed it and you have my word that this won’t happen again. I’ll give you a $100 discount next month for the inconvenience. Is there anything I can do?”
Ensure It Doesn’t Happen Again
Your customers want to hear that you’re sorry, but more importantly, they want to hear that it won’t happen again.
Your Customers Are Always Right (Even When They’re Not)
We’ve all dealt with difficult clients in the past. Sometimes it’s pretty clear that they’re wrong. Except that they’re not. They’re the ones funding your business, so they’re always right. Suck it up.
Be Willing to Take a Loss
Last month I bought a camcorder online. The website said it was brand new, but when I got it, it had videos of a couple on their honeymoon (no, not that kind of video). I returned the camera and the merchant finally issued me a refund for the camera price, but I had to pay for the shipping to my home and back to the store. When I asked the merchant why, he said that otherwise he’ll lose money on the transaction. You can see why this is stupid.
You have to be willing to lose money if you screw up. Why should your customer have to pay for your mistakes?
The Small Fish Are as Important as the Big Fish
It’s normal for business owners to spend a lot of time making their big clients happy and forgetting about the smaller clients. However, you need to keep two things in mind:

  • Small clients talk as much as big clients. They can really damage your reputation.
  • Small clients might at one point become big clients.
  • Small clients have friends working for big companies and they can recommend your business.

Never Answer an Email or a Phone Call When You’re Angry
Last week I made a big mistake. One of our nicest clients was frustrated because she felt we didn’t send her enough updates on her campaign. I was having a bad day and my response was extremely unprofessional. Luckily, she was very forgiving when I apologized later. If you’re not in your best mood, take a cold shower or go for a walk before you answer that email. Your customers will appreciate it.