3 Must Haves for a Happy Customer Experience in Every Business

Posted by in Best Business Practices, Business Development, Marketing Strategies, Melissa Galt, Success Habits

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With my recent extensive and intensive experience with Apple, I am more qualified than usual to share with you three BASICS you must have to create and sustain a happy customer experience.  Face facts, it isn’t enough to sell your product or services, you have to ensure that your sale is satisfying and leaves your customer or client feeling good (even great) about you and your business. Customer service isn’t rocket science and it is the cornerstone of every successful business, yet I am amazed at how easily it can be botched and leave a permanent scar. That scar by the way manifests itself in stories retold countless times of how bad an experience was . . . I have already managed to scare a handful of colleagues about switching to MAC and I’m not even fully there yet.

So, let’s cut to the chase and look at these three MUST HAVES:

Customer Service, Relationship Marketing, Customer Experience, Apple, Imac, Macbook Pro, Customer Service Speaker, Melissa Galt, Creating Customer Satisfaction 1) Get Your Customer’s Name Right, Spelled and Pronounced.

Now I realize that this may sound no-brainer to you, it did to me too. But having purchased both an IMAC and a Macbook Pro (hey when I make a move, I jump in with both feet) only to find that on every screen, inside every program and license, my name was misspelled it became a big hairy deal.

Today, there is little more precious to each of us than our name. It is what every website asks for along with our email and it has to be spelled correctly. Now I’ve had Galt misspelled plenty of times with a change to Gault, it makes me cringe but I deal with it. Apple tortured my first name in every single location and then some with Milissa instead of Melissa. And to add insult to injury, correcting it would entail reloading all software programs where this appears, YIKES.

Customer Service, Relationship Marketing, Customer Experience, Apple, Imac, Macbook Pro, Customer Service Speaker, Melissa Galt, Creating Customer Satisfaction 2) Don’t Promise What You Don’t Deliver

I will do another post soon on setting customer expectations because it is vital to your business success. Right now, I’ll just hit the tip of this enormous iceberg.

In the case of Apple, even their phone message that you get at every call, clearly states “set up your device just the way you like it.”  And when I went to purchase I invested three hours on a Saturday night to ensure they were crystal clear on my expectations based on what they’d promised in their advertising and their scripts that the sales people used. (Can we please skip the Genius monikers, these guys and gals clearly weren’t or I’d have had a much better experience.) And yet, I had a mess on my hands when I went to turn on and use the IMAC (haven’t touched the laptop yet, but it is a copy so betting the same.)

They had ensured me they’d move all files over and it would be set up as I requested. That included files being in the same order as on my PC. NOT! Instead the alleged geniuses (I have a much better name, but am too PC to share it) took every file I had on my PC and put it in a virtual blender at high speed on disorganize. The files on the IMAC bear no resemblance to those on my PC and it is going to take considerable time to sort it out. It is  more likely I’ll have them dumped and reinstalled in an orderly fashion by an outside tech, more monies out of pocket when they’d promised “just the way you like it.”

Customer Service, Relationship Marketing, Customer Experience, Apple, Imac, Macbook Pro, Customer Service Speaker, Melissa Galt, Creating Customer Satisfaction 3) Be Easy to Reach

We’ve all learned to master those annoying multi push button phone systems that the giants like American Express, Verizon, and more use. You just keep hitting zero until the system delivers a human being (or you use a dialtone phone, yeah right!) But what to do when you’ve made a major purchase and each time you call you have to go through a system that doesn’t have a zero option or worse, it cues you behind all other calls giving no preference as a new customer. This is how Apple works if you have to reach the store, and leaving a message for a specific person because you don’t want to repeat your story six million times is fruitless as messages are never relayed despite promises from any Nick, Marcus, Tom, Dick, Harry, or Jessica answering the phone. YIKES, really?????

Every sale I’ve ever made, I give my client my cell phone and easy access for questions, challenges or praise (yes, it does happen!) I bet you do to, and if you don’t you will now. Here’s the trick, if you have a staff working for you, you must train them to get messages to you post haste. A new customer is at that precarious place where they can either teeter into total satisfaction or fall into the abyss of buyer’s remorse and once in the abyss it is very hard to fish them out.  I’m in the abyss. Yes, I can still return the product, but that means I’ve been beat, and I’m no quitter!

There is a lot more I can share on these three and I’m betting you can too, so I’d like to hear your favorite BAD or GOOD CUSTOMER SERVICE story, c’mon now, dish it here.

Oh and if you aren’t already following me, find me  on Facebook, Linkedin, or Twitter all.

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10 Responses - Join the Discussion!

  1. Melissa, glad you’re staying in for Round Two, if as proof of resilience alone. Apple’s innovation and clean “start-from-scratch” operating system updates (as opposed to PC’s “patch-upon-patch”) are its strengths. But you’re right in saying that they have so touted their extraordinary customer support … and outright failed you on their loudest sales argument. Great lesson to us all! (Fingers crossed for this coming week!) ;-)

    Reply to this comment
    • Melissa Galt

      Thanks Sharon,

      Fingers are crossed, still working through issues and likely be the week before I make a decision. On PC for this.

      Hugs, Melissa

      Reply to this comment
  2. Hang in there Melissa!
    Also Keep in mind the song lyrics – “One bad apple don’t spoil the whole bunch.” You have had someone get you off to a bad start but I love apple and the service I have had with our “geniuses” here in Colorado. Pull in some management from your local store and I think you will be pleasantly surprised at how they jump to action. Again they have just always been so awesome for me in 25+ years I have been dealing with them that I am sad to hear you so disheartened!
    Keep the faith!
    Cheri

    Reply to this comment
    • Melissa Galt

      Thanks Cheri,

      Clearly your geniuses are another breed! There is a whole store full of geeks (non-genius) that got me off to a bad Apple start.

      Hugs, Melissa

      Reply to this comment
  3. I’m finding it interesting that with all the “listening” that we’ve been taught is the best way to use social media, that someone higher up in Apple has not staged a customer service “intervention” yet. Frankly, for a company that is supposed to be in the “great” category, this is the most surprising thing of all to me. Certainly, all customers should be treated equally as well, but given your proven reach I would think someone in Apple management would be “hearing” that they need to step up now.
    We all make mistakes… it’s how we recover that matters most.

    Reply to this comment
    • Melissa Galt

      Hey Nanette,

      You are sooo right! But given what I’ve read and heard in the midst of all this. Apple has blinders on and it is likely to cost them in the absence of their illustrious leader.

      Hugs, Melissa

      Reply to this comment
  4. Louise

    I share some of the feelings expressed. I know people with MAC and they love it and have never complained about having any problems, even with set up. They say once you have a MAC you’ll never leave. I’m beginning to wonder if they are riding on their laurels too much and the fact that since their system seems to be so “perfect” they are not used to dealing with customer service and are so ill prepared to deal with reality. And as creative as Steve Jobs was, keep in mind he was also one of the leaders in outsourcing to China and taking advantage of cheap labor to do all that he did.

    Reply to this comment
    • Melissa Galt

      Louise,

      You are so right and like many geniuses, Jobs was not known for his people skills, lol. They do rest n their laurels as evidenced by the honor of being considered one of the TOP 10 Worst Companies for Customer Service!

      Hugs, Melissa

      Reply to this comment
  5. Julie

    Melissa,

    I”m sorry to hear about your struggles in making the switch to Apple. I purchased a MacBook a year and a half ago and have never felt good about the transition. I thought there was something wrong with me! It seems that “EVERYONE” else had a seamless transition – so although I hate to hear about your pain, I do feel like you’re proving that I’m not insane! ha!

    I am planning to switch back to PC…though not exactly looking forward to that process either. My biggest frustrations have been Microsoft Office for Mac and the holier-than-thou-you’ll-wait-as-long-as-we-say-to-wait-because-we’re-more-important-than-you attitude at the stores.

    I will continue to follow your adventure.

    Best,
    Julie

    Reply to this comment
  6. Melissa Galt

    Julie,

    You are not insane, I’m going back too but returning all MAC stuff as within time limit. BTW, have an awesome tech who knows both systems very well (just found him or I could have skipped this torture.) He does work remotely if you need help and recommendations.

    Hugs, Melissa

    Reply to this comment

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