The (not so) secret strategy these 10 customer service legends share

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The not so secret strategy for Custom ServiceIf you plan to thrive in the era of the customer, now is the time to improve your customer service. Regardless of how your customers view you today, to position your brand for the future you first need to examine your company culture and ensure customers are properly considered, i.e. squarely in the center.

Instead of waxing philosophical about the value of a customer-centered culture and its power to revolutionize your customer service, let’s look to and learn from real-world examples.

Let me introduce you to 10 of the best customer service organizations in the world.

These beloved brands, who have each built their company around a strong customer-centric culture, will be our guide. As a direct result of their similar cultures, these companies share a relentless dedication to delivering exceptional customer service with each-and-every interaction.

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2015: ​The year of the customer

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Good riddance 2014 and hello 2015.

A new year, new beginnings, an opportunity to reflect on the past year and set goals for the next one, and in the case of this year—the year horrible customer service finally dies.

I truly believe as customers the worst is behind us. We have survived the peak (or perhaps more fittingly the trough) of poor customer service, and we are winning the war.Sales_YearofCustomer_Blog

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Customer Spotlight: Company flourishes with Zoho CRM after Salesforce Disappointment

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“We had more Excel files than we knew what to do with.”

It was September 2014 and national head of auction operations G. Praveen Kumar knew that a change had to be made.

“It was simply becoming too complicated to manage a multitude of shared Excel files for all of our data. I knew we needed a secure, online solution to manage our deals and work flows, but quite honestly I wasn’t sure where to look, or which platform would be the best.

I knew we needed something, and I wanted it in place before the start of fiscal year 2015. I needed something online that we could learn very quickly, where we could store our data and share it across users.  There was a real sense of urgency to get something in place.”

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The most painful customer service moments of 2014, and how you can avoid them in 2015

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Avoid Painful Customer Service MomentsBecause you are a consummate overachiever and haven’t read enough year-in-review lists yet, I bring good tidings—and one more list—to you and yours on this final day of 2014.

These moments, though painful to relive, are important to remember so we can avoid repeating the same awful mistakes in 2015, or, for the sake of humanity, ever.

Initially I planned to rank a list of the 10 lowest lights, but compiling and comparing these sad moments was too sadistic a task for me. After all, it is the holiday season, and it simply wasn’t worth risking the sweet deliciousness of my grandmother’s homemade peanut brittle on a vomit-inducing session of sadness. As a result you will find, in no particular order, a smattering of suckitude from the past year in customer disservice.

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When Should You Implement CRM into Your Business?

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This is the fourth post in a five part series looking at the 5 Big Questions of CRM Systems.

If you missed the first three posts, you’ll want to check out Who should use a CRM, What is CRM and Why You should use CRM.

This post will discuss when you should implement CRM into your business.

CRM System

As a small business, you probably use an organizational process that has worked well up to this point. Maybe you’ve used Excel to keep track of new purchases and contact information, or maybe you use several different apps for your data.

Whatever your process has been, you’re looking for something more. (or you wouldn’t be reading this!) Read more

Who Should Use a CRM System?- 5 Big Questions about CRM Systems

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This is the first post in a five part series answering the who, what, when, where and why of CRM Systems.

First we want to look at who should use a CRM system. Don’t worry if you aren’t exactly sure what a CRM system is. I will define that in the next post. Let’s first decide if you should use one.

Zoho CRMCRM systems are designed to help your small business solve challenges when it comes to managing your sales and marketing initiatives.

In a recent survey we conducted, CRM users ranked the ways a CRM has helped their business. 67 percent said using a CRM system helped them follow up on opportunities and leads and 56 percent said it helped customer relationships because the interactions were accessible in one place.

Here are three questions to help determine if you’re ready for a CRM system: Read more

The customer service lessons we must all learn from that Comcast call

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​By now, you’ve probably  heard the call that hijacked the Internet last week. If not, let me warn you. It is painful – incredibly painful.  And while I do feel awful for the customer, ultimately, the cancellation call from hell breaks my heart for a shocking reason.

Listen to it again, and try not to empathize for the hapless agent and his cringe-inducing commitment to the Comcast way. This poor soul morphed, in eight short minutes and one tweet, from internal hero (revered and rewarded for his ability to continually face-off against tough odds and win) into the saddest character in a modern-day tragedy. Thankfully, like all great tragedies of the stage, we can heed the warnings and reap the rewards of lessons that become apparent.Frustrated for everyone

First, let me frame the scene. On one side of the phone we have Ryan Block, famous tech journalist (founder of gdgt and founding editor of Engadget), and on the other we have a nameless cog in the massive machine of horrible customer service that is commonly known as  Comcast. As in all tragedies, ultimately both players become victims of a larger, more devious force. Read more