How To Botch Customer Service

Every social media and e-marketing “how-to” includes the admonition to respond to customer input promptly. Rightly so. Promptness is critical but so is the content of the response.

customer service, e-marketing, social media, personal servicePerhaps that hasn’t been emphasized enough.

Consider it emphasized now.

A friend of mine sent an inquiry to the company that handles her prescriptions, asking a very specific question. She got a prompt, generic response that did not address her question although it did address the general area of her question: bill payment.

A second, somewhat snarky query by my friend yielded the correct response, signed “My goal is to ensure you are completely satisfied. Please let me know if there is anything else I can do to meet my goal. Joe

She replied with a thank you for the correct answer, to which she got another response, “My goal is to ensure you are completely satisfied. Please let me know if there is anything else I can do to meet my goal. Sue

The point? It’s clear that this is a canned script, not a real exchange. The email exchange was with multiple respondents using the same script, not a conversation between customer and service rep. It left the customer feeling ill-served, not well-served.

Yes, it’s not the end of the world. She got the answer she needed eventually.

But as we all know, a recorded message that “Your call is important to us” is not as satisfying as reaching a human being without being put on hold and reaching a human being is only satisfying if the person you reach is empowered to be human.

Compare that to the e-marketing practices of the Yes To! company. Who would you rather do business with?

Prompt and personal: Both must be part of your e-marketing.

How do you make customer service personal? Do you have an example of the right way to serve customers? Or examples of what not to do?