Today I want to share a winning tale of customer service, done right.
(By the way, isn’t it unfortunate that good customer service is so rare that when you do experience it, it’s a big enough deal that you feel the need to sound the trumpets? Because really, it should be an everyday occurrence.)
So a couple months back, I went to my favorite place for killer pizza here in Wilmington, NC, Slice of Life. Good times, good times. And did I mention they have killer pizza?
Anyway, a few weeks later when I got my bank statement, I noticed that there was a $3.00 difference between what I actually spent on the night in question and what was on my receipt, and the amount that I was charged according to my bank statement. (I’ve worked in plenty of restaurants in my day, by the way, and I know that the end of a long Saturday night when you’re entering the credit card receipts, this can happen.)
So I called up the restaurant to point out the overcharge, and talked to a lovely person named April, I believe. She was genuinely apologetic and promised to take care of the issue, pronto. All good, and I’m happy.
What I didn’t expect was to get a phone call from the owner of Slice of Life a few days later, personally apologizing and telling me he was going to: A, send me a coupon for a free pizza, and B, a check for $20.
I kid you not. (By the way, thanks Ray.)
I mean, really, I was blown away. The owner of the restaurant calls to apologize, says “that shouldn’t have happened, that’s unacceptable, and it’s not the way we do business. I’m going to send you a coupon for a free pizza and a check for $20 to make it up to you.” Top notch customer service skills, I tell you.
I already loved Slice of Life for their excellent pizza, and I would’ve continued to visit regularly anyway, but this makes me feel ridiculously loyal to the Slice of Life brand.
Because Ray didn’t have to reach out that way, but he did. He went above and beyond. He showed that his customers are important enough to go the extra mile for.
That, my friends, is an excellent customer service experience.
And believe me, customers remember this, and they tell all their friends about it.
So here’s your one simple tip: A simple, easy to implement way to stand out from the crowd and build strong customer loyalty is to do for your clients and customers what other people in your niche don’t do, or won’t do. Like Ray did. You know, something unexpected. (Like the flower manhole cover at the beginning of this post. 😉 )
We all get lackluster, even atrocious, customer service on a way too regular basis, so any effort to do better than that, especially if you do waaaaay better than that, will win you loyal and happy customers who can’t wait to spread the word about the kick-ass thing you did – just like I’m doing here.
And word-of-mouth marketing like that just can’t be bought. (Unless we’re talking $20 and free pizza. Ha ha, I kid.)
So what about you? Do you have any tales of excellent customer service to share? Please share your story in the comments!