TalkShop

Right-Sizing?

This term is generally used by companies as a replacement for "layoffs".  After an experience I had the other day, I have a new way of thinking about it.  I frequently get my RBSUV (Really Big SUV) washed at a local place that offers hand-drying.  Ah, there's nothing like a clean car!  In the summer, they usually hire a lot of teenagers, mostly female, mostly pretty cute; good for business, no doubt.  The girl who was drying cars the other day was only about 5' tall.  Very nice, thanked me, smiled, etc.  But,...

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Things Just Got Really Personal

As technology progresses and things start to get less and less personal, step outside the box and surprise your customers. When was the last time you wrote a letter? Everyone loves getting a personal note, so the next time you’re emailing to just “check-in” and say “thanks”, write a quick note. It’s different, and because it’s not just another email amongst the 3,000 your customers sift through daily, they will remember the gesture. What else works? Keeping regular phone contact with your customers, within reason, allows them to connect with you...

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What Do Your Communications To Customers Really Say To Them?

I bought a small box of breath mints recently (proactively, of course), and the wrapper instructed me to open the box to see if I had won one of their sweepstakes prizes.  When I opened it, it said, "Sorry, you are not a winner".  So was I now a loser?  I was having a great day up to that point.  I found a mirror, and did my best Stuart Smalley pep-talk, and got back to feeling good about myself.   What do your communications to customers...

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1 oz. Customer Service = 1 lb. Advertising

Today, Seth Godin posted on his ever-valuable blog on business and marketing the value of customer service at the moment a brand is under the most scrutiny by a customer. As Godin writes, airlines are realizing that delayed or cancelled flights are prime opportunities to offer potentially annoyed customers perks like free online books and movies while they wait. Read more here and keep in mind Seth’s word of warning: “if your organization has a stall, deny and avoid policy when it comes to customer interaction,...

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Apples And Oranges Can Coexist

Whether a manufacturer, retailer or service provider, most great companies will employ customer satisfaction surveys to measure how effectively they are meeting or (hopefully) surpassing their customer’s expectations.  Frequently these companies will also have a mystery shop program in place to help measure and drive improvement in operations and customer experience.  Often times, when companies have both types of programs in place, they are developed, executed and consumed in separate spheres within an organization, with little or no thought as to how these programs could be used in conjunction for maximum benefit. Rather than treating these...

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