Customer Experience News & Trends

Never do these 5 things to customers

Most customer experience professionals go to great lengths to avoid mistakes that will bug customers. But it can still be easy to overlook subtle missteps that can destroy customer trust.

Here are the most common overlooked actions that can hurt customer trust and bust your reputation — along with how to avoid them:

1. Inflate or falsify praise

We all want customers to know how wonderful we are, so we often boast “best-in-class,” “industry-leading” or “most innovative” in promotions, ads and on websites. While they might be true, too much is off-putting.

Instead: Rely on third-party facts. Refer customers to studies or awards that show you do stand above the competition. Also, give customers the channels/tools to do the bragging for you. For example, allow them to post reviews on your website, letting the good and the bad show. Customers need to see you’re authentic, too.

2. Don’t deliver

Customers who get anything less than what’s expected will always be disappointed. That’s why anyone involved in the customer experience must make sure that what they promise can and will be delivered. For instance, if you promote 24-hour customer service, the contact center should be staffed so customers get immediate responses to requests each of those 24 hours.

Instead: Promise even less than what your colleagues in sales, customer service and technical help will deliver — that way customers will be wowed when their expectations are exceeded.

3. Offer too much

When a company has one or two products, or services that are home runs, they sometimes think 10 more like them will be just as well received. Then they saturate the market with our own, overdone solutions. It’s difficult to stand out in a crowded market — especially a self-created one.

Instead: Stick to one or two solid offerings until you’re able to reach completely different markets.

4. Attack the competition

Very little is ever accomplished by pointing out a competitor’s flaws. Your organization will sound like the bully in the playground trying to hide his insecurities by making fun of other kids.

Instead: It’s always better to focus on your positives in marketing campaigns, sales calls and conversations with customers than it is to point out someone else’s negatives. Avoid ever using your competitors’ names in your campaigns.

5. Put the wrong face forward

CEOs are usually incredible businesspeople, but not always good spokespeople. There aren’t many leaders like the late Steve Jobs or Lee Iacocca, who could innovate, motivate and captivate. So it’s almost never a good idea to make corporate leaders spokespeople.

Instead: Build your reputation on a great customer experience. You might even try something like Zappos — by making your customer service pros the face of the company.

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