Recently, my brother-in-law told me about a mechanic he’d never use again. His distrust of the mechanic started when the mechanic answered his business phone “hello” without identifying himself or his business. From there, the distrust only grew as the mechanic failed to call when he said he would, give my brother-in-law a quote before fixing issues, or update him on the expected timeline. So, while he did good work for a reasonable price this time, they weren’t sure it would work out with him again in the future.

why-customer-service-matters

Fast forward a few weeks. I called customer service of a company I planned to use and had the worst customer service experience of my life. This by itself may have felt like an isolated incident but was compounded by how many tries it took for me to get anyone in customer service to answer my question in the first place. After three calls, three live chat attempts and an email, I finally got a customer service representative only to have that person be extremely rude. It made me distrust the company as a whole.

Trust is a fragile thing. The people you hire to represent you have a strong influence on your brand’s image. If they cannot communicate your brand’s message – or just be polite – customers may wonder why you would hire such a person. They innately believe the people only hire other people they like and trust. If you like unprofessional people (or do good work but behave unprofessionally), how can your customer trust you?

Things as simple as identifying your business when you answer the phone, acknowledging that you received an email, or providing reasonable timelines to your customers seem like simple things but they can build a foundation of trust. Your customer learns who you are, that you value them and that you will stay true to your word.

How are you representing yourself to potential customers? And if you’ve hired help, what additional messages may they be sending that affect your brand’s reputation?

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