"Business is all about the customer: what the customer wants and what they get. Generally, every customer wants a product or service that solves their problem, worth their money, and is delivered with amazing customer service."
--- Fabrizio Moreira
In the many industry shows, seminars, magazines, books and lectures, one of the main topics frequently addressed is that of customer service. We all know that without our customers, we would not survive. The business is all about the customers. We hone our craft developing quality products for the customer. We strive to become experts in, (and then pass on that knowledge and wisdom to our employees), providing great customer service. We feed our families, pay our team members, invest in better tools and equipment, and give to charitable causes, all because we have customers.
But sometimes we forget. We forget how to treat our customers. We forget that without customers, we don't have a business and we can't share out passion and expertise for the products and services we offer for our niche within the sign industry. And, even if we do remember the importance of our customers, what we should do to improve customer service sometimes gets lost in our everyday hustle of running a business. Because of that, here are three reminders of how to offer lasting customer service:
"The aim of marketing is to know and understand the customer so well the product or service fits him and sells itself."
--- Peter Drucker
The first reminder is to know your customer. Make it a point to describe, in writing, what your ideal customer looks like. Who buys what you sell? What are your customer's product requirements? What kind of business is your customer in? Where do they live and work? Try to know everything about your customer so you'll know them when you see them.
"Rural technology is moving from kind of the back office to where everything, every company - sales, marketing, customer acquisition, new product development, media - all industries are becoming technology industries. And it's not information technology: it's business technology."
--- Michael Dell
The second reminder is to keep up with new technologies. Subscribe to technology magazines, blog posts, seminars, or anything else that will help bring you up to speed about what technology is available for you to use for your business to create a better customer service experience. For example, some businesses are using Square, a convenient payment device, out in the field to make it easier for customers to pay your invoices. Even if you only know how to turn on your computer right now, try to stay ahead of your competition technologically and offer more and better services to your customers.
"By putting the employee first, the customer effectively comes first by default, and in the end, the shareholder comes first by default as well."
--- Richard Branson
Finally, treat your employees like good customers. Be kind to them and reward them handsomely. They will in turn treat your customers like gold. Keep your house in order and your house will offer superb customer service.
Remember these three customer service strategies and implement them today. You'll begin to see an impactful difference right away.
"We see our customers as invited guests to a party, and we are the hosts. It's our job every day to make every important aspect of the customer experience a little bit better."
--- Jeff Bezos