Customer loyalty first requires quality customer service

Happy Friday the 13th. While this day is considered unlucky for some, it's a rather great day for...

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Oh, um... excuse me. Happy Friday the 14th, my mistake.

No matter what, mistakes will happen in your business. How they are handled will determine if you keep a customer after the mistake.

This week we've been on the receiving end of two mistakes. One from a company I've been using for over 23 years now and one from a local utility company.

In the first case, the customer service was adequate. We weren't happy but we were satisfied with their response. Since they stopped offering a service we need, we have to go to a competitor for it (and might take the rest of our business too).

The second though... Let's just say the utility's first mistake was an equipment accident but the later mistakes are because the wrong person is in their customer service role. That one is getting escalated to the regulators and our ombudsman.

Like rabbits, mistakes multiply if they aren't handled.

In the rush to AI-everything, a lot of customer service interaction is getting automated and sent to AI to chew through. While it might help on the expense side of things, you could be poisoning your customer's goodwill. In a few months you'll wonder why customers aren't coming back.

If you want to see what it could be, take a look at how much each great customer is worth (e.g. the VIPs and Loyals in my app). Then ask yourself what would happen if your AI agents scare these customers away. Can you afford to lose those customers?

Customer service is the front-line role that can make or break your customer loyalty. No amount of win-back discounts or loyalty points will make up for bad customer service.

Eric Davis

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Topics: Customer loyalty Customer service

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