Quality customer service seems to be few and far between these days. The “mom and pop” stores that once offered that personal touch and warm, homey feeling seem to be the days of yore, replaced by large stores and companies who either offer little help, or act rude, pushy or careless when they do assist us.
Take what happened recently to a family member, for example. She was eating at a restaurant and they messed up her order pretty badly. Rather than make a scene or wasting more time sending it back, she decided to speak with the manager after her meal just before leaving. So, when she asked for the manager, a 20-something man walked out and when she explained what happened, his response was, “Hope you have a nice day.” What in the world is this? It’s something I’d expect to see in a sitcom, but not in real life.
But, what’s arguably worse than bad customer service? How about a reward program that makes little sense, or only infuriates the customer even more? I’ll give you two examples.
The first is AMC Stubbs. This is a low-cost annual membership for AMC customers that offers Tuesday discounts of up to $5 off per ticket, a large popcorn for the price of a medium and a medium popcorn for the price of a small, along with points for every movie you buy on any day, and four additional cards for friends to rack up points for you, with points going toward food/drink and free movies. What a great idea/service, and something much needed to combat the wildly popular streaming services like Netflix and Amazon Prime. However, to get the Tuesday discount, you have to go purchase the tickets in person, rather than online. Are you kidding me? That means the customer not only has to go out of their way to take the time to get the tickets, but they also risk the movie being sold out or not getting a good seat. That is infuriating. Why have a membership only to deny your members a logical benefit like this?
The second example deals with Keurig. Now, Keurig is a great product that saves people time and money, producing 1 hot drink in 40 seconds. And, they even have Club Keurig to reward their customers, except that the rewards often make no sense! If you accumulate points, guess what you are eligible for? A coffee maker. But, you already have a coffee maker! What you really want is free coffee. Sure, they sometimes run discounts where points can be used to buy discounted coffee at 30-50% off, but even then, it’s costing you.
These two examples are just a slap in the face to customers, arguably making us even more upset than we are with poor customer service.
At Cytron and Company, customer service and client experience are first and foremost. Besides the fact that we genuinely want to help our clients succeed and reach their goals, we know that we would not exist without them. As cliche as it might sound, we are most happy when they are happy, and want to create an experience they love.
That leads to an important realization: every client should be treated with a high level of care and respect, but not every client should be handled the same way. That’s because each client will be different in their specific needs, and how they want to work. Some will want to swing for the fences, while others want to take baby steps and build their way to something bigger. Some will want to be very businesslike all the time, while others will be more laid back and want to have fun, and have a more personal relationship. And, some will want certain services, and others will want and need different services.
Whatever the client wants, we should all aim to deliver a great experience. However, this does not mean always being a “yes” man for us. If the client wants something a certain way and we disagree, we will offer a better solution. You might be afraid to do this, but it shows the client that you are pragmatic and really care about doing right by them. Of course, this is industry dependent, but a lot of us are paid to be the experts and know what is best for the client. After all, that’s what we all must do – do what’s best for the client.