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Many Happy Returns: The value of good customer service

Have you been asked to rate your satisfaction with the customer service you received from a company?  

The Net Promoter Score has been used to measure customer satisfaction in recent years following a study conducted by the London School of Economics. Their research showed businesses which increased their promoters and decreased their detractors grew four times faster than businesses which were unable to do this.

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Yet a single score cannot give us a complete picture of customer satisfaction. Perhaps you declined to take the survey at the end of the call. Or maybe you chose a rating in the middle range because the service was OK but your question wasn’t answered.  

Recent customer service discussion focusses around the customer’s experience of business interactions. Managing customer expectations so people receive what they expect to receive, or more, is the key to gaining customer advocacy. How would your customers rate their satisfaction with your services? Maybe it’s time to think about investing in customer service training for your staff.

In her article examining the impact of new technology, Sara Wright, Marketing Director at Dialog Direct, discusses the increasing expectation that a good customer experience can be had on any device at any time of the day or night.  Customers expect you to engage with them as individuals, be aware of their preferences from prior interactions and, based on this, be able to anticipate their future needs.  She explains the focus is shifting from spending money on product innovation to spending it on customer experience innovation. 

So, if you spent money on customer service training, what return on your investment could you expect? In a recent study, Peter Kriss, Research Scientist at Medallia, has looked at the difference in money spent by people who had good customer experiences compared with those who had bad customer experiences.  In businesses which relied on repeat transactions, Kriss found that customers who had good experiences spent 140% more than those who had poor customer experiences.  Looking at businesses that relied on continued subscription, he found that 73% of customers were likely to be subscribed a year later if they had a good customer experience, compared with only 43% of those who had encountered a bad customer experience. 

Economically, it makes sense to invest in customer service training.  It is well known that repeat business creates approximately 80% of revenue and that it can be five or six times more expensive to gain a new customer than to retain an existing one.  The International Customer Service Association found that 95% of customers who left a business due to poor customer service would return if the service improved. Retaining just 5% of these customers could increase profits by a minimum of 25%.

Effective customer service training can give your staff the skills to retain customers by asking the right questions, listening for intended meaning and resolving problems in a way where the customer feels heard. Good customer service training gives your staff the skills to turn a detractor into an advocate for your business, where they actively tell people about their experience. Technological innovation also allows customer service training to be delivered in flexible ways in the workplace and at home according to need. It makes investing in your people achievable as well as good business practice.  

If you’d like to tap into the power of exceptional customer service, why don’t you contact us. We’d love to talk you through our award-winning approach and our experiential solutions that could transform your customer service approach today.

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ClearAction LLC  “Customer Lifetime Value to Prioritize Customer Experience Management”

Focus Plus Service Auditors, Customer Service Facts,

Kriss, Peter: “The Value of Customer Experience, Quantified”, Harvard Business Review, August 01, 2014

Ziskie, Lauren; “The Top 9 Customer Experience Trends of 2015”, Dialog Direct

Marsden, Dr Paul,  Samson, Alain, and Upton, Neville; “Advocacy Drives Growth, Customer Advocacy Drives UK Business Growth” London School of Economics     05 September 2005,

Topics: Customer Service