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Unlocking Business Success Through Customer Service

Unlocking Business Success Through Customer Service

Dhivakar Aridoss

Dhivakar Aridoss

Marketing Head

My bank asked me to do a Re-KYC of my savings account. I tried doing it online this morning, and every attempt failed.

They asked me to provide my Aadhar number and enter the OTP I received on my mobile number. When I did that, the message on the screen read that my e-KYC authentication failed. I tried this multiple times, and every time it failed.

They had another option for me to upload the documents to do Re-KYC. I chose this option and uploaded my PAN card, driver’s license, and latest photograph. When I finished uploading and submitted it, I was told that all the documents were uploaded, but Re-KYC could not be processed now, and I should try some other time.

I tried it six times, spread across six hours. All my attempts failed.

I tried reaching their customer service number but could never get them. I reached out to my relationship manager, and he was the most unhelpful. He directed me to write to their customer care email address.

I did that, and I am waiting with crossed fingers. The only other option is to visit the nearest physical branch and spend some hours getting this done.

This is a great example of bad customer service.

There are multiple examples of bad customer service from some great brands spread across many years.

Look at these examples:

In 2017, United Airlines faced significant backlash after a video went viral showing security personnel forcibly removing a passenger from an overbooked flight. This led to much criticism and a drop in United’s stock price.

Comcast is known for poor customer service – long wait times, billing errors, and unresponsive customer support representatives. In 2014, a customer recorded a frustrating call with a Comcast representative who refused to cancel his service. The recording went viral, leading to negative publicity for the company.

Samsung faced a major crisis in 2016 when reports surfaced of its Galaxy Note 7 smartphones catching fire and exploding. The company’s response was criticized for being slow and inadequate despite issuing a recall.

In 2017, British Airways experienced a major IT outage that resulted in the cancellation of hundreds of flights and left thousands of passengers stranded at airports around the world. The airline faced criticism for its slow response and lack of communication.

All of these examples resulted in damaging reputations, loss of trust, and financial repercussions for these organizations.

Why Is Customer Service Important?

Here is some statistical evidence to champion customer service as a key differentiator in a competitive market.

  1. Increasing customer retention rates by just 5% can lead to a profit increase of 25% to 95% – Bain & Company.
  2. 32% of customers say they would stop doing business with a brand they love after just one bad experience – PwC
  3. 58% of customers are more likely to tell others about their poor customer service experiences than their good ones – Zendesk
  4. Acquiring a new customer can be up to five times more expensive than retaining an existing one – Invesp
  5. 86% of customers are willing to pay more for a better customer experience – Walker
  6. 72% of customers who have a positive experience with a brand on social media are likely to recommend it to others, while 22% of customers who have a negative experience will post about it online – Convince & Convert
  7. 62% of organizations view customer experience delivered by the contact centers as a competitive differentiator – Deloitte
  8. 76% of customers say it’s easier than ever to take their business elsewhere – Salesforce

These statistics clearly demonstrate that investing in excellent customer service is not only essential for retaining customers and building brand loyalty but also for gaining a competitive edge in the marketplace.

What Are the Benefits of Customer Service?

Customer service is the new oil in the new-age economy. Most products and services become commoditized over time, and the only differentiator you have is the customer service you provide.

Customer service plays a pivotal role in shaping the success and reputation of a business. Here are some key benefits:

Customer Satisfaction

Providing exceptional customer service ensures customers have positive interactions with your business, increasing satisfaction and loyalty. Satisfied customers are more likely to return for future purchases and recommend your company to others, contributing to long-term success.

Why do we return to Amazon, Apple, or the Taj for our needs? None of them are cheap, but they provide exceptional customer service, and that’s the differentiation that pulls us towards them.

Brand Reputation

A reputation for outstanding customer service can set your business apart from competitors and establish consumer trust and credibility. Positive word-of-mouth recommendations and online reviews from satisfied customers can enhance your brand reputation and attract new customers.

Have you ever heard a bad review of Zappos? That’s the power of the brand reputation built on putting customers first.

Customer Retention

You can foster strong relationships and loyalty with your existing customer base by addressing customer needs promptly and effectively. High customer retention levels lead to a more stable revenue stream and reduce the need for costly acquisition efforts to replace lost customers.

We have an executive sponsor who works closely with all our key customers to ensure that their stated and unstated needs are met. This means a positive experience and a customer retained for life.

Increased Revenue

Satisfied customers are not only more likely to make repeat purchases but also tend to spend more over time. You can drive sales growth by delivering exceptional customer service through increased lifetime value and positive word-of-mouth referrals.

In most organizations I interact with, their revenue growth is more than 70%, fueled by their existing customers. So, a satisfied customer means more revenue.

Reduced Customer Churn

Effective customer service can help prevent customer churn by addressing issues and concerns promptly, thereby retaining customers who might otherwise have been dissatisfied and left for a competitor. This leads to a more stable customer base and improved business sustainability.

There is a saying that a complaining customer is always good for a business because the ones that don’t complain quietly leave you for your competition. The moment you hear your customer’s complaint empathetically and pull all stops to address their concerns – with this experience, the customer will become twice as loyal to your business as before.

Valuable Feedback and Insights

Customer service interactions provide valuable opportunities to gather feedback and insights directly from customers. By listening to customer feedback, businesses can identify areas for improvement, innovate products or services, and tailor their offerings to meet customer needs and preferences better.

For us, our customer-facing support engineers are the wealth of our knowledge. We have included nearly half a dozen features in our product based on customer service conversations between our agents and customers.

Employee Satisfaction and Engagement

Engaged and satisfied employees are more likely to deliver exceptional customer service. By investing in employee training, empowerment, and recognition programs, businesses can cultivate a positive work culture where employees feel motivated and empowered to deliver outstanding customer experiences.

Employee experience is key to providing exceptional customer experiences. This is one of the reasons why the KRA of every senior management professional includes employee experience in addition to the customer experience responsibilities.

Examples of Good Customer Service

Now that we have looked at some bad customer service examples, the need for customer service, and the benefits of customer service, let us look at some real-life examples of good customer service.

Walt Disney World

Disney is renowned for its exceptional customer service and commitment to creating magical guest experiences. In one heartwarming example, a young boy with autism visited Walt Disney World and became distressed when he lost his favorite toy, a plush Dumbo elephant.

Disney staff went above and beyond to locate a replacement Dumbo and surprised the boy with it, bringing joy to him and his family during their visit.

Southwest Airlines

Southwest Airlines is consistently praised for its friendly and helpful customer service. In one instance, a Southwest Airlines gate agent held a flight for a passenger who was rushing to attend his grandfather’s funeral, ensuring he could make it in time to say goodbye.

This act of compassion and understanding exemplifies the airline’s commitment to putting customers first.


The Ritz-Carlton hotel chain is synonymous with luxury and impeccable service. One of the brand’s legendary stories involves a guest who left behind a stuffed giraffe at one of their hotels.

The hotel staff not only found the giraffe but also went above and beyond by taking photos of it, enjoying various hotel amenities, and sending them to the guest along with the toy, demonstrating their commitment to creating memorable experiences for guests.

I cannot resist a plugin here from our experience of providing exemplary customer service. One of our customers recently stated that they stay with us and continue to migrate their processes onto our platform because of the exemplary customer service we provide.

We are available 24×7 by phone, email, and chat. As a customer, you can talk to a real human being at any time of the day. How lovely does this feel?

Entrepreneur Tony Hsieh once famously said, “Customer service shouldn’t just be a department; it should be the entire company.” Indeed, the importance of customer service cannot be overstated – it’s the bedrock upon which successful businesses are built.

Shep Hyken, a renowned customer service expert, said, “Customer service is not a department; it’s a philosophy.” It’s about creating memorable experiences that turn customers into brand advocates and lifelong supporters.

“People will forget who you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.” – Maya Angelou. The emotional connection forged through exceptional customer service is what sets businesses apart in the current competitive landscape.

Customer service is a strategic imperative that can make or break a business. So, let us commit to delivering experiences that delight, surprise, and exceed expectations at every touchpoint.

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