If you read this blog on a regular basis, then you know that I am a big fan of the customer experience or what most call customer service. While we all agree the customer experience starts from the moment your customer is interested in your product, the customer experience when something goes wrong may be even more important.
Even brands with the best customer experience sometimes have missteps. They have policies and procedures in place to make sure that a bad experience doesn’t happen. Even with all this, sometimes shit happens. When it does, the good ones have a solution ready to go.
This week I am traveling. I booked my flight with American Airlines over a month ago. When I went to get seats, there were none available. I believe the airline holds back seats to assign at the airport. To me this is not a good customer experience. I just gave the airline money for a ticket. Is it too much to ask for two seats together? The airport is stressful enough; do we need the stress of not having seats? When I got to the airport, I made sure I spoke to a person and not a ticket kiosk. Guess what, she gave me a good customer experience by giving me exit row seating. When you fly coach, these are the best seats. This made the rest of my very long flight a good experience.
My brother is also a huge proponent of the customer experience. So when shit happened at his food fest a few weeks ago, it almost killed him. Every issue that happened that day was directly related to the customer. While the damage was done that day, what he did after the fact made a huge difference. He offered refunds to any customer that asked for one. He went on the radio and offered an apology. He even answered every single email that was sent to him. Anyone who gave him their phone number, he called them. He spoke to them in a personal manner. He explained what happened and in most cases the customer understood. While they may not have had a good customer experience at the event, they were treated with respect and given the post experience they deserved. I bet many will go back to next year’s event.