Part Four: How To Get New Customers – Customer Service
Part 4 of my series of how to “Get new customers” is one of my favorite subjects – CUSTOMER SERVICE. Let’s quickly recap; in the last 3 weeks I discussed 3 ways on how to “Get new customers”, namely: INTRODUCTIONS, NETWORKING AND TESTIMONIALS and this week I am going to discuss CUSTOMER SERVICE.
So how will customer service ‘get’ you NEW customers you might ask? Well let’s just say that customer service won’t necessarily get you NEW customers, however EXCEPTIONAL customer service WILL definitely get you NEW customers. You see we all expect a certain amount of customer service e.g. if the florist says they will deliver your flowers by 2pm then we expect them to deliver by 2pm, so this is considered ‘expected’ customer service and it shouldn’t be seen as ‘good’ service because this is what we paid for, right!
So how does EXCEPTIONAL customer service get us new customers then? The answer is simple and we all know it yet we sometimes forget about it. Let me share with you something that happened to me awhile back when I had being flying with a specific airline and I had spent in excess of over R1 million worth of tickets with them in the past 20 years.
On one of my trips I was unable to get a seat on ‘my’ airline and so I had to buy a ticket on another airline which I did. The day of the flight I was about to make my way to the airport when I received a call from someone at the airline to inform me that the flight had been delayed by 2 hours – that’s it, that’s all they did, they called me and told me the flight was delayed by 2 hours. Obviously I wasn’t happy the flight was delayed however AT LEAST THEY HAD THE DECENCY to call me and tell me – something ‘my’ airline had never done in 20 years of flying with them.
Now apart from being impressed by the phone call I had actually missed a meeting that morning due to other delays and as a result of this “unexpected call” I was able to attend this meeting which resulted in a significant amount of business for me which I wasn’t expecting and which I probably wouldn’t have secured if I had not attended the meeting. So the bottom line is “that call not only impressed me but it also resulted in business for me” and I was now delighted in the customer service I had just received from this airline because;
* Firstly, they had actually taken the time to call me,
* Secondly, I was already rushing so now I could take my time,
* Thirdly, I wouldn’t have wasted time sitting at the airport and
* Fourthly, I attended the meeting which I would have missed.
Even though I was delayed (it happens with all airlines), that simple customer service call made me decide to give this airline a chance and move my business to them (NEW business for them) plus I will sing their praises and tell other people like I am doing with you right now, although they still mess up now and then, but who doesn’t.
The airline was British Airways that made that call to me and I used to fly South African Airways but since that incident I converted to British Airways and I have never looked back (I would love to have supported our national carrier) but I wanted EXCEPTIONAL customer service and this is what BA gave me. So once again, how does EXCEPTIONAL customer service (like this telephone call) get a company new customers? Well you see because of that wonderful experience I tell my friends, family, clients, colleagues and YOU about how great I think British Airways is and as a result of this IF only one person decides to try British Airways then BA just got a new customer because of the EXCEPTIONAL customer service they gave me.
So do you offer EXCEPTIONAL CUSTOMER SERVICE? It really is easy no matter what industry or business you are in, you just need to do something exceptional and you will “Get new customers”.