The Importance Of Customer Service To A Startup
Guest Blog from: Karthk Reddy
As the owner of a young startup or business, your goal is to get customers by the droves. The type of business your startup is into makes no difference. As long as profit and not loss is the goal, your business is dependent on the presence of customers.
In the same vein, every business owner wants customers to keep coming back to do more business. Every company wants customers to advise friends and colleagues to do business with them. This is the cycle that the whole profit and loss industry runs on. This cycle has been around for centuries, yet it is still doing the trick.
Building a network of happy and satisfied customers doesn’t just happen overnight. It is a complicated network that thrives on awesome customer service. Just as strikers are to a football team, so is customer service to a startup business. Without it, there is no focal point.
With the advent of the digital age, the impact of customer satisfaction has increased drastically. Nothing spreads faster than rumors. With the internet, they spread faster than the speed of light. One tweet or a blog post from an irritable or dissatisfied customer can potentially mar your startup business. As the owner of a new business trying to break into a highly competitive market, you can grasp the importance of reputable customer service.
Essentially, customer service is a personal interaction with customers that becomes a pipeline to invaluable feedback, insight, and advertisement. Notice the use of the word “personal”. Most startups make the mistake of outsourcing their customer service needs. It is supposed to be a two-way communication that brings you and your customer closer together.
There have been some huge success stories due to excellent customer service by huge brands. Today, Nordstrom is one of the biggest retail companies out there. Back in the seventies, Nordstrom allowed a man to return his tires and even gave him a refund.
This was done despite the fact that Nordstrom did not sell the tires to the man. It had only moved into a shop which was previously used by a tire business. That story is still talked about and has played a massive part in the popularity and success of the company.
Today, Nordstrom continues that fine tradition by using Groupon deals to attract and communicate with its extensive customer base.
Another company that has benefited from impressive customer service is Target. Today, Target is the second largest discount store retailer in the United States. That is no mean feat, and it came about through one of the most impressive acts of customer service.
A young man walked into a Target store a few decades ago looking to buy a clip-on tie for an interview. Target didn’t sell clip-on ties at the time. The young man later left with a knotted tie and some advice on conducting himself during an interview. He then got a job at Chick-A-Fila, and great tales have been told of Target ever since.
Customer service is a vital cog in the machinations of a startup business. In case you are confused about the tenets of impressive customer service, here are a few tips to start you on your way:
- Let your customers know everything your business entails
- Answer the newest electronic mails and digital inquiries first
- Shorten the line and process for getting across to your customer care representatives
- Make use of personalized emails
- Use human touch to deliver delightful surprises to your clientele
- Inspire your customer base, make them feel special and part of something bigger
- Always be ready to provide solutions to every inconvenience no matter how inconsequential it may seem
- Learn from customer inquiries and issues to improve your customer experience
- Finish with a smile.
Check out some examples!
VenturX is a web platform that helps entrepreneurs through their journey from idea to launch and beyond. VenturX uses data-driven analytics to score and connect startups and investors at Seed and Series A financing.