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The customer experience is your best marketing

What is marketing? A quick Google search on the word marketing reveals this from the American Marketing Association (And, they should know!): Marketing is the activity, set of institutions, and processes for creating, communicating, delivering, and exchanging offerings that have value for customers, clients, partners, and society at large. Great definition, but marketing has changed.

Customer satisfaction is the enemy of exceptional customer service

Jim Collins, author of the bestselling business book, Good to Great said, “Good is the enemy of great.” A twist on this excellent concept is that, “Good is the foundation of exceptional.” A good customer service experience is doing what you are supposed to do. That’s expected. In other words, it meets basic expectations. It’s

Higher profits or more customers

As an organization gets larger, there is a tendency to start to focus more on overhead and profit and less on customer acquisition, and even more important, retention. My friend and customer service colleague, Steve Digioia brought this up and asked the question, “What are the causes of this change and how do you keep

Create your customer service mantra

Most companies have a tagline, a phrase or sentence that describes what they are about. Sometimes that doubles as a brand promise. Along those lines, I want you to come up with a customer service promise. For some companies, their tagline is their customer service promise. For example,’s tagline is Powered by Service. Three

Which lane are you in? Is it customer service?

There are some companies that are recog nized for their customer service.  It’s their focus, they have built their brands around it, and they’re good at it. You could say they “stay in their lane.” Some examples would be Ace Hardware (think helpful ), Nordstrom and Zappos. Are these companies known for being the low

Speed creates customer confidence: what is the velocity of your customer service?

The CEO of Busey Bank, Van Dukeman, has an interesting concept he calls the  of Business. I heard his presentation on the subject of how quickly a business moves when I had the privilege of working with the bank, and I realized the importance of how velocity applies to the customer service experience. What comes

Six differences between customer-focused companies and operations-focused companies

Many companies that claim to offer good customer service in reality are grounded in an operations' mentality with rules and policies that allow for little flexibility, preventing them from rising above anything more than average or satisfactory. The companies that really understand customer service have a different focus. Their hiring and training is focused on

Customer service may rule, but rules in customer service don’t

Even while on vacation with my family, I can’t help but take note of the customer service – or lack thereof. One resort employee denied a simple request using one of my least favorite phrases: I’m sorry, it’s our rule. Six of us had gathered for an early morning breakfast and wanted to sit together

Customer service: what not to do when you don’t know

I was recently preparing for an overseas trip and needed information about international calling plans for my mobile phone. I asked my assistant to call my carrier and inquire about the best plan for my needs. Sounds simple, right? Just call and get the information then sign up for the best plan. But it wasn’t

Sell the customer service experience, not the mechanics behind it

The connection between customer service and marketing is undeniable. If you deliver good customer service, let people know as part of your marketing efforts. And you can expect an effortless marketing boost as well, as happy customers talk to their friends about their experience. Smart companies know the value of promising – and delivering –