How to Spread Exponential Customer Goodwill


Last week I sent out an email for a client to its recent past customers. The email’s goal was to reactivate those customers, and the copy was written as a message from the company’s CEO.

At the bottom of the email in a P.S., I added the opportunity for these customers to let the brand know why they weren’t ordering from it anymore.

So the email was sent, and the responses came back to me. There were some complaints that were easy fixes and others where people were upset with the company.

My philosophy on this situation is simple: Customer complaints are customer advocates waiting to happen. That’s right. Once you resolve a customer’s complaint — in a way that he feels like you care — you have a good shot at retaining that customer for life.

And here’s another interesting outcome from this email campaign: Many of the customers who received the email responded with thank-yous to the CEO for taking the time to ask why they left.

It’s amazing how a little customer care from a typical nameless, faceless corporate entity changes peoples’ attitudes and perceptions of a company. And when the CEO gets involved, the goodwill level goes up exponentially.

I missed the TV show “Undercover Boss” after last week’s Super Bowl (it’s on my DVR; I’ll review it after I watch), but I think its message applies here. The general premise of the show is just how much a CEO can learn about his/her company, customers and employees just by getting involved.

To me it’s a no-brainer. My CEO philosophy was formed a long time ago, thanks to Tom Peters (he’s my mentor, even if he doesn’t know me) and his principle of management by wandering around. In other words, get out of the corner office — i.e., ivory tower — and get involved with your “X” (fill it in, folks).

But enough about CEOs. The feedback the company received at the behest of the CEO’s email was handed out to the senior customer service team. Systematically, all complaints are being resolved.

Now I want to ask you something: Do you think these customers, with their newly acquired “warm fuzzies” about the company, will tell their friends? Absolutely! And they’ll likely do it via social media channels, too. I call that spreading exponential good will.

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5 Responses

  1. You hit it right Jim – it’s a no brainer. Encouraging and allowing for a two-way dialog is the new order. Don’t fear it dear clients!

  2. lol @ “after last week’s Super Bowl”!

    • I’m a little late putting this post up. It originally ran last week as my AllaboutROIMag.com column.

  3. [...] more: How to Spread Exponential Customer Goodwill « The Gilbert Direct … Share and [...]

  4. i agree and i wrote about this recently too – i think Goodwill is what you need to focus on – do things right, listen to and then delight your customers, create great products and services etc.

    That is the best Social Media strategy you can have.

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