Personalizing customer service consists of targeting an audience and acting on specific objectives to increase business, build brand loyalty, and attract new clients or customers. For instance, a phone conversation between an unhappy customer and a customer service agent is best handled when a customer feels confident that the first person they speak with will be the last person they will have to speak with until there is a resolution. An online customer will have their information previously stored by the company so service can be provided quicker and more efficiently, and a face-to-face encounter with a customer service agent will present with a patient, well-educated representative who is capable of making an amicable decision at the time of the meeting.
Personalized customer service provides their clients with specific products that appeal to them, offers discounts to good customers, or offers to deliver when others will not; thus standing apart from their competition. Everyone's favorite local deli emails my office their daily lunch specials and delivers within an amazingly short period of time. Other area delis are no longer in business.
Well-chosen and thoughtful promotional items can also have an impact on personalizing customer service. All of us like to get something for nothing, and if the gift has value, not only does it provide another way to advertise, it also helps to build customer loyalty. If two stores have equal merchandise and similar prices, the store giving away a gift with a purchase is more likely to attract our attention. Most of us however have all the drink coolers, mouse pads, and coffee cups we can handle, so a little ingenuity and creativity can turn those mundane products into more customized ideas and attract new interest. Yesterday I was purchasing some beachwear, and in Palm Beach County that's a most popular commodity. I happened to notice a store giving away canvas beach bags - the kind many of us now use in supermarkets to eliminate landfill plastic grocery bags. The store has their logo on the front of the canvas bag, so every time I go to the supermarket, not only is the bag useful to me for carting away my groceries and environmentally friendly, it is also one fantastic way for the beachwear store to advertise for free.
And along with everything else, don't forget to personalize service with thank you notes to your customers, reward programs, and exceptional service. I promise - we all remember and appreciate that personalized customer service.
photo credit: Ktoine