It doesn’t matter if you think you’re providing good service. It doesn’t matter if your website or brochures says that you do.
All that matters is what your clients think.
Let Me Share With You A True Story…
For this blog we were using a commenting system to manage all of the comments we receive.
The service we chose was called IntenseDebate. Before our programmer installed it for us I researched what the options were in the marketplace.
I narrowed it down to two: IntenseDebate and Disqus.
I sent both companies an email to get more information. IntenseDebate replied quickly with a full answer. Disqus took much longer to get back to me and their reply was one sentence long – insufficient for a full response.
That was over 2 years ago. Things have changed.
When we redesigned the Consulting Success blog our commenting system started to act up. Our programmer tried everything to fix it, but alas it was a no go.
So we sent one email to IntenseDebate support to get some help. No reply. Then we sent another. And a third.
I wasn’t happy. Providing YOU, our readers, with a great experience and way to comment and interact with the community on the blog is very important to us. So we didn’t take this whole thing lightly. We needed a solution.
And since we weren’t getting one from IntenseDebate…we decided to look at alternatives.
Finally, we got a response from IntenseDebate. It ‘only’ took 72 hours! And their reply didn’t help us solve the problem so I emailed them back…and again we waited…
But waiting wasn’t an option. So what did we do? Well, you may have noticed that we’ve switched over to Disqus.
(*Note: I still believe IntenseDebate has a great product. Maybe they just had a few bad days. Unfortunately they weren’t able to provide the support we needed when we needed it.)
Disqus has come a long way. Before switching to them I sent them an email and they responded within 24hrs (it was probably more like 12hrs). The commenting system has everything we need and so far we’re very happy with it – we hope you are too.
How Does This Affect You?
So why should you care about our commenting system troubles? Because, it’s relevant for every consultant.
You NEED to provide the best service to your customers and delight them. This isn’t anything new…I’ve talked a lot about this and wrote a book (called Profitable Relations 2nd edition) about the topic back in 2008.
What’s important for you to know is that if you fail to delight your customers at every turn, at some point their patience will end…and when it does they will look for an alternative. They will find another consultant that can do what you can…and that they believe can provide them with better service along the way.
If you’re in an industry that doesn’t have any competition you’re lucky. Because in that case your client can’t really jump ship. But these days there are more options than ever before. The industry and product without competition is rare.
That’s why you need to stay sharp. Always be on top of your game. And make it priority number one to keep your clients happy. If you don’t, if for some reason you believe you’re above that, or that everything is A-Okay, be prepared – you might be in for a rude awakening.