What Happened to Relationships?

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CRM has been hot for a few years.  But, IT wizardry and the push to cut costs by de-humanizing the service experience has too often removed the “relationship” from “customer relationship management.”    The by-product was aptly characterized by a friend of ours describing her bank.
“They installed this new customer relationship management system so all my correspondence from them is now personalized––they even knew my son was heading off to college this year.  Now, when I call and give them my account number, they comment on the fact that I have a new Buick, financed by their loan department.  But all that is just automation and technology.  When I walk in any branch no one acts like they know me or even wants to get to know me!  Give me back old-fashioned personal service, not this customer-ized baloney.  It’s no more genuine than the ATM.”
Attitude is the fuel of innovative service and an attitude that clearly shows[…] Continue…

Strong Emotional Connections = Great Customer Experiences!

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Connect with or walk into one of your favorite service providers and you immediately feel the difference in the experience that makes this establishment one of your chosen few. What is the difference? There is no doubt that the product or outcome they deliver is one you value and trust but most likely they make a strong emotional connection with you that you find meaningful.
How can you make a strong emotional connection with customers? As we often tell our consulting clients, “it is not hard!” It does take a well thought out vision of what your unique and distinguishing service experience should be as well as a clear definition of the experiential elements the organization needs to consistently provide to deliver your special experience. There are several common components we find that deliver the “special” feeling to customers that bring them back and causes them to advocate for your business.
We find the top component in terms of “return[…] Continue…

Do You Show Trust to Your Customers?

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The Holiday Inn in Peterborough, Ontario, is famous for what they call the “magical moments” they create for guests.   A woman who frequently stays at Holiday Inns called the Holiday Inn Peterborough Waterfront with a unique request.   Although she lived hundreds of miles away, her daughter lived alone in Peterborough.  She had learned in a phone call that her daughter was not feeling well.  Wanting to help her daughter, the mother had called several restaurants in the area in an attempt to secure a meal delivered to her daughter and charged to the mother’s credit card.  All had refused.  Remembering the service she had previously received from Holiday Inns, she called the Peterborough hotel in a last ditch effort for assistance.
Eliza Belfry, Guest Service Representative and Jennifer Charron, Riverside Grill Server went into action.  The requested meal was prepared and a taxi summoned.  Pursuant to the mother’s request[…] Continue…

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