How to keep my business

It never ceases to amaze me how corporations will spend huge amounts of money to win new customers, but once they have your business they act like they are entitled to it, thus losing the most important marketing tool of all – word of mouth. Here are some of the ways that you can impress me.

  • Don’t hide from me! Too many businesses have an attitude that can be summed up as “give-us-your-money-but-don’t-talk-to-us”. They bury phone numbers deep within their websites and hide contact info, perhaps in the hope that you won’t ever trouble them again.
  • Pick up the phone! Part I : “Press 1 for the runaround, press two for a total waste of time. If you want to talk to a real person you are out of luck”
  • Pick up the phone! Part II : Don’t tell me that “Call Volume is high” unless you are going to tell me when it is not high. Don’t tell me that “All of our operators/associates/peons/slaves are busy” unless you are going to tell me when they are not busy or will offer a callback. Both of those phrases mean the same thing: We do not employ enough people and we’re hoping you don’t notice.
  • Indian Call Centers? Just Say NO! A lot of business farm out customer service and support to India. The first sign of this is when they pick up and give their name – and you know that’s not their real name. Think about it: the first thing that they tell you is a lie… and it usually goes downhill from there.
  • Answer the question! When e-mailing, I don’t mind getting an auto-generated “we-got-your-message” reply, but I would appreciate it if the subsequent reply was read and replied to with something that was not spat out of a boilerplate-cut-and-paste machine.
  • Share the love – and the paperless savings! “Going Paperless” may be and added convenience for me, but is a massive cost savings for you. So why not cut me in on those savings? A one-off $20 bonus – or $5 annually – should cover it.

Now reading: Me, myself and Bob, by Phil Vischer

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