After having a bad customer service experience, you may swear never to use a product again.
However, an exceptional experience can make you a loyal and lifelong advocate of a brand.
More than half of customers express their loyalty by recommending brands to family and friends, and almost half of those customers remain loyal to the brands they recommend. This is important because almost 50% of customers invest more in the brands they trust.
How can brands achieve customer loyalty? How can customer service professionals constantly delight and empower customers not only to keep choosing a brand, but also to recommend it to family and friends?
To answer these questions, we have compiled a list of two B2B brands and two B2C brands that are established as industry leaders and provide exceptional customer service. Since no two brands are the same, we synthesize the lessons and experiences from each story that any brand or customer service professional can apply to their current strategies.
4 examples of top-notch customer service from real brands
1) The Ritz-Carlton Hotel Company
Ritz-Carlton’s service policies are so legendary that some stories of satisfied customers have even been turned into books (like this one).
In this play, John DiJulius, a writer and customer experience expert, describes the story of his stay at a Ritz-Carlton hotel when he forgot something in his room.
“I left the Ritz-Carlton Sarasota in such a rush to the airport that I forgot my laptop charger in the room. I thought about calling when I got to the office, but before I could, I received an air parcel from the hotel containing my charger, with a note saying, ‘Mister DiJulius, I wanted to make sure you received this correctly. I am sure you need it and just in case I am sending you another charger for your laptop. ‘The note was signed by Larry K. Kinney of the lost and found department. “
While this customer service story may seem exceptionally positive, it is not. Ritz-Carlton’s commitment to high-quality customer service is so stringent that any employee is authorized to spend up to $ 2,000 a day to enhance the guest experience. Whether the employee works at the front desk, restaurant, or room cleaning, you can take whatever steps seem reasonable to make the guest experience exceptional, as was the case in the example above.
In an interview with Forbes magazine, Herve Humler, president and CEO of The Ritz-Carlton Group, explains the organization’s key to making customer service stellar: employee engagement. Humler has the following:
“I believe in the power of employee recognition and autonomy to make them 100% committed. Their commitment is essential to achieve guest loyalty. “
Ritz-Carlton is dedicated to providing excellent service, and its mission is summed up in this phrase: “We are ladies and gentlemen who serve ladies and gentlemen.” This reinforces and promotes the daily commitment of employees to be attentive to the moments when they can transform the customer experience.
Conclusions on customer service: Employee autonomy is essential to achieve good results for customers. The first step towards employee autonomy is commitment: make customer service part of your mission and make your mission part of everything your organization does. Next, structure and incentivize your team so that employees can work independently to solve customer problems and think creatively.
Even if you don’t have a budget of $ 2,000 a day, you can incentivize customer service representatives with strategies like the following:
- Conduct qualitative and quantitative assessments, and don’t stress as much on the number of technical assistance cases or tickets that are resolved per day.
- It reduces the time employees spend answering phone calls and queuing customers to do research, analyze data, create new processes, or work on other projects to achieve greater impact.
- Employ creative or inexpensive resources to help employees find opportunities to please customers with handwritten thank you notes, small gifts, or discount codes.
Our friends at Wistia, a video analytics and hosting platform, believe in the power of this medium to help tell company stories. However, Wistia is not limited to just marketing videos and social media content, but also uses this channel to provide excellent customer support.
Wistia team members create personalized instructional videos and individual thank you notes to help customers and teach them how to use the various aspects of the software through visual means.
It makes sense for a video hosting brand to use this medium to help customers, and this strategy is also very helpful to its users. As Harper, a member of the customer satisfaction team at Wistia says:
“When it comes to communicating technical concepts or processes, videos are the most effective method.”
Although I can explain something clearly in words, it is infinitely better to be able to show someone how you can go from point A to point B in a few steps, without having to read a text.”
This is how Wistia has achieved great customer service: with demos instead of words; In this way, customers can solve problems, learn more effectively, and remember solutions better than if they read them in an email or heard them over the phone.
Conclusions about customer service: Don’t limit yourself to phone calls to provide exceptional customer service. Leverage technology to deliver support in the most effective way. Resources like screenshots, GIFs, and videos can be very helpful in explaining a complex concept, and they don’t have to be sophisticated to be effective. You can use some tools like Jing, Awesome Screenshot , LICEcap , QuickTime Player and even your own Smartphone or webcam to create useful resources for clients.
Also, if you are a HubSpot client, you can integrate your account with Wistia and thus create and host videos using its first-rate software.
3) Warby Parker
However, I am not the only one to choose this brand. Warby Parker has revolutionized the high-end eyewear industry and positioned itself as a well-loved brand for users thanks to its affordable frames and in-home testing program.
One of Warby Parker’s most famous customer service stories tells an incredible case: A customer forgot his WP glasses on the train and, days later, received a package at home containing his old glasses and a new replacement pair. ; the shipment had been made by Anjail Kumar, a former general adviser to Warby Parker, who happened to be travelling on the same train.
Image Source: Forbes
This is an example of fantastic customer support, although it is obviously difficult to replicate every day. Some of the best customer service lessons can be taken from Warby Parker’s mission and business model.
As soon as they enter the Warby Parker website, visitors can take a fun poll that shows the wide variety of eyewear types to choose from. Visitors can then browse the selection of frames and select 5 options to try out for free in their homes. Customers can customize frames and lenses based on their needs, and also save money compared to other brands.
All these options make customers loyal to the brand, and that they not only continue to buy their products, but also recommend them to their friends. When the company sends customers the glasses, they recommend sharing selfies on Instagram with the hashtag #WarbyParkerPruebaEnCasa to receive other opinions (and, of course, to spread the word among friends).
Conclusions on customer service: We all like to have many options, especially when it comes to fashion. Offer options to your customers from the first moment they interact with your brand. Whether it’s creating interactive surveys, offering free demos or trials, or sending endorsement products, it’s important that you give customers the opportunity to “test” your products or get to know your brand a little more.
If you do not have sufficient authority to make these types of decisions, offer different options to customers from the first contact with them.
- Ask them which contact method they prefer and offer them services in the way that is most convenient for them.
- Do they prefer to receive care proactively and regularly or do they prefer to contact them when they need help?
It’s always good to have options, so appeal to the technology and flexibility to give them to your customers.
I recently heard Kristin Aardsma, a member of the customer service team at Basecamp speak at Support Driven’s SDX 2017. He talked about Basecamp’s customer service team; specifically, he referred to how the team changed the way of measuring success to reduce stress and employee turnover, and achieve better results for customers.
Part of Basecamp’s solution to solving customer problems and empowering its team members was to spend time during the workday on research, innovation and creativity. To that end, customer service representatives leave the phone lines and waiting line for two hours every day to dedicate that time to other projects. Employees have more opportunities to make a difference across the organization by collecting research, analyzing data, identifying patterns and trends, and working on projects and processes to achieve better results.
Two hours a day (10 hours a week) may seem like a long time, but it worked really well for Basecamp. Employees no longer feel exhausted, overwhelmed, or stressed, and Basecamp has no difficulty solving customer problems as team members are now more satisfied.
Customer Service Conclusions: Time spent off the phone is not wasted time, so be sure to spend a few hours a week identifying patterns, analyzing data, and creating processes to work more efficiently. When you spend the whole day dealing with technical support requests or on the phone, it’s hard to take your distance and stop for a moment; however, the information and feedback that can be gleaned from front-line customer support can go a long way toward helping your organization, so it’s important that you gather and share that information.
Spend time every week reviewing what went wrong, what went right, what feedback you get from customers and common issues you can identify and share with your team. In this way, you will be able to do your work in a more effective way and also help the rest to improve.
What are the best examples of customer service that could inspire you? Share them with us in the comments