Articles By: Chip

Is Your Customers’ Journey Sparkly or Just Service Eye Candy?

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Eye candy!  It is such a really cool label. It should be a phrase that has a terrific reputation. After all, who doesn’t like candy?  And, “a sight for sore eyes” is a positive and encouraging statement.  Most of us see too much plain vanilla and drab stuff.  But, eye candy has a shady reputation. It typically means attractive but superficial.
It’s like the apple that Snow White ate – it looks really great to take a bite out of, but at the end of the day it will put your customers in a deep sleep and not nourish them long-term.
One can also look at how customer service is delivered across your customers’ journey and see a similarity. If your customer service is simply – service eye candy  – “looks good on the outside, but no depth of quality on the inside,” then your long-term customer loyalty will suffer.
In the Sixties, we called it “show window service.” You get a sense of potential service eye candy when you notice signs and posters[…] Continue…

Where Is Your Customer On Your Calendar?

We have been noticing how almost anyone in organizations these days can check everyone else’s calendar/ availability.  It might be contributing to the meeting mania that seems to be mushrooming; “number of meetings” booked has emerged as the new status symbol.  Having a meeting to plan another meeting is now trumped by having a meeting to plan the meeting that is aimed at planning a meeting!  But, we recently had one refreshing deviation from the paralysis from analysis method of avoiding a responsible, take-a-stand decision.
We were trying to schedule an hour phone conversation with a very senior leader of a large manufacturing company.  His on-the-ball assistant looked at the leader’s calendar for his availability at a requested time and said, “I know he wants to get some time with you, but he has that entire morning blocked out to meet with a group of customers.  He wants to get their participation in planning a new product launch.” […] Continue…

Are You Listening for Customer Discontent?

Sitting by the window on the top floor of a high-rise Dallas hotel provides an amazing panoramic view.  Weather becomes up close and personal.   We watched a major rain storm crawl across the distant plains and deliver a hard punch to downtown Dallas streets.  It sent pedestrians scurrying for cover.  Cars slowed to a snail’s pace; streets gorged with torrents quickly looked more like a river than a freeway.
Customers are in the crosshairs of a perfect storm.  Their memories of a hard hitting, long lasting recession has left them anxious about the future and cautious about investing in service that does not have obvious value.  The shift from face-to-face and ear-to-ear service to automated self-service, often without an exit or access to a person for help has left them frustrated by convenience gone awry.  And, the power of the Internet and social media has provided customers with the tool to deliver a downpour of blame as they flood […] Continue…

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