For those of you who don’t know what Hub­spot is I will give you a very brief overview. Hub­spot is a SAAS com­pa­ny that pro­vides tools for inbound mar­ket­ing suc­cess. We have been using the sys­tem for almost a year and I am hap­py with our results so far. When any­one in busi­ness hears the word mar­ket­ing they auto­mat­i­cal­ly think about attract­ing and clos­ing new cus­tomers, but there is anoth­er key com­po­nent, and that is turn­ing your cur­rent clients into evan­ge­lists. I learned more about HubSpot’s phi­los­o­phy last month at Inbound 2013

 

Mark Kilens’ 8 Guidelines to Customer Delight

 

1. Hap­py cus­tomers are cre­at­ed by hap­py employ­ees. Cus­tomers will not love your com­pa­ny unless your employ­ees love your com­pa­ny. Employ­ees like perks such as free soda or flex­i­ble hours, but shared val­ues are what inspire employ­ees. Think about your on-board­ing process. Are you clear about your orga­ni­za­tions val­ues? Can all of you employ­ees state the val­ues? Are the val­ues you have writ­ten down real­ly what dri­ve your busi­ness?

 

2. Edu­cate your employ­ees. Cus­tomer ser­vice is not just a depart­ment. Cus­tomer ser­vice should be the entire com­pa­ny. If you don’t have cus­tomers, then you don’t have a com­pa­ny. Hub­Spot rec­om­mends, as do many oth­ers, that employ­ees should have at least 3 months of train­ing, and ongo­ing train­ing should be a part of any orga­ni­za­tion. 

 

8 WAYS TO DELIGHT CUSTOMERS3. Employ­ees must be empow­ered and encour­aged to be a per­son, not a machine. We have all been on the receiv­ing end of a cus­tomer ser­vice call gone wrong because the employ­ee on the oth­er end had no pow­er to solve our prob­lems. Any employ­ee should be able to solve a customer’s prob­lems on their own with­out hand hold­ing. 

 

4. Under promise and over deliv­er. Keep­ing cus­tomers hap­py is about man­ag­ing expec­ta­tions. I mean think about it would you rather be told it will take two days to resolve your prob­lem and it take 4 or would you rather hear it will take 4 days and have it resolved in 2. This is not about doing less for the cus­tomer. It is about always doing your best, but not always promis­ing it. 

 

5. Lis­ten to your cus­tomers. Silence is gold­en! God gave us two ears and one mouth for a rea­son. How are your employ­ees sup­posed to solve a cus­tomers prob­lem if they don’t lis­ten to what the cus­tomers prob­lem real­ly is? Be an active lis­ten­er by repeat­ing what the cus­tomer said back to them, and show­ing empa­thy if they are hav­ing a tough time. 

 

6. Ask your cus­tomers ques­tions. Make sure the ques­tions you are ask­ing are open end­ed (why, how, what, where, who and when), and make sure to doc­u­ment every­thing. There is noth­ing worse that hav­ing o repeat your­self to a dif­fer­ent per­son on the same team. Doc­u­men­ta­tion keeps all of your employ­ees on the same page when it comes to the cus­tomers they are serv­ing. 

 

7. Help your cus­tomers. Hub­Spot has a say­ing that goes like this, “the busi­ness­es that are the best edu­ca­tors will be the most suc­cess­ful”. Solve your cus­tomers prob­lems, edu­cate them on your prod­uct or ser­vice, and do all this with enthu­si­asm! Be a solu­tion­ist for your cus­tomers, and exceed their expec­ta­tions!

 

8. Fol­low up with your cus­tomers in a per­son­al way. Don’t just send out canned emails imi­tat­ing one-to-one com­mu­ni­ca­tion, real­ly take a minute and send a thought­ful and per­son­al com­mu­ni­ca­tion to your cus­tomers. This real­ly shows your cus­tomer how much their busi­ness is val­ued.  

 

BONUS: It is the exe­cu­tion and con­sis­ten­cy of the small inter­ac­tions over time that cre­ate the larg­er expe­ri­ence.

For all of Grace’s Inbound 2013 blogs please click here.