Pictured: Members of our Engineering and Customer Success teams in Langley, British Columbia.
Tony Sandhu is Senior Support Engineer on our Support and Customer Success team. Tony tends to handle some of the more complex support cases: when other team members need to escalate an issue, Tony is often on the receiving end.
According to Tony, “my role involves the accurate collection of information and data related to client requests, monitoring the progress of those requests, measuring customer satisfaction and the preparation of work estimates and quotes.”
Tony also provides assistance to our QA team, including front-end and back-end testing. Tony was kind enough to answer some questions related to his role.
Follow Tony on Twitter:
Tell us about the most unusual request that you received?
One customer asked for Navin’s cell phone number (Navin is our CEO and President). I was troubleshooting an issue with this customer and he wanted things escalated to the highest possible level.
He wanted to talk to our CEO. We were able to resolve the issue, though, and get his website up and running shortly thereafter. Navin never knew, though he probably does now! (That's a photo of Navin, to the right)
Tell us about the most challenging customer issue you faced and how you addressed it?
Almost all the issues that are escalated to me are challenging in one facet or another. Last year, I worked with colleague Sanjay Mehrotra to transition a client over to DNN from a non-DNN application. Some of the challenges we had:
- Their code was not compatible with DNN, so we had to re-write a portion of it.
- We created custom modules to meet their specific requirements.
- We were discussing highly technical details with a client who is non-technical. Being patient and SHOWING, rather than telling, we were able to resolve her issues and give her a proper understanding of how we did it.
Which brands inspire you, from a customer service point of view?
I am inspired by
HERO|farm, a marketing and design agency whose philosophy is "Do great work for good people." The duo behind HERO|farm realized how beneficial and impactful marketing and advertising can be when a company has an admirable mission. HERO|farm also does at least one pro bono campaign per year for a non-profit organization.
What customer service websites or blogs do you frequent?
Richard Branson (who
publishes frequently at LinkedIn).
Also, Flavio Martins (who manages the
popular blog WinTheCustomer) always have great insights on customer service.
In addition, I frequently visit the
HubSpot blog and the Parature blog.
What’s the future of customer service?
We now live in an age where “real-time” is the expectation of customers. Customers are turning to social media because they want to be heard, they want to be appreciated and they want the best and fastest response possible. Brands need to proactively listen on social media, as any issue that’s not addressed, could very well go viral and become an embarrassing situation.
Unfortunately, people have been resorting to social media because traditional customer service doesn't respond fast enough. Social media holds the key to customer service and all companies should be listening to their customers on social media.
Note: According to recent research from Brandwatch,
brands still don’t listen to customers on Twitter.
In addition to listening to your customers, you need to treat them with the utmost respect. Last year, a hotel fined a couple $500 because they left bad reviews on Yelp. Lo and behold,
it went viral.
The result? The hotel received a lot of negative PR and their Yelp page is currently full of one-star reviews.
Thanks for answering these questions, Tony!
4 Essential Steps to Unforgettable Customer Service
Read on for more customer service insights from Tony.
Great customer service skills are an asset to be proud of. This applies to various types of contact, whether it be face-to-face contact, via telephone, via email, or wherever it may be. Customers that are satisfied with their service will discuss their experience with their friends, family, and colleagues. A little bit of positive “word of mouth” can go a long way.
Before you know it, everybody is talking about your company and its excellent customer service. This attracts new customers and helps you retain existing customers. A company can spend thousands of dollars on advertising, but if their customer service is horrible, then that’s all it takes to lose clients.
Your customers’ happiness should be your top priority. We have all heard the phrase "the customer is always right." Consider these essential steps to unforgettable customer service.
1) Provide Speedy Responses
Time is money: respond quickly to your customers’ needs. Keeping your customers waiting for a reply will not only irritate them, but will also lead them to lose trust in your company. A quick response shows that you care for customers’ concerns and prevents them from searching for an alternate source to fulfill their needs. Responding by emails is fast and convenient, but throw in a phone call here and there to show them that there is an actual person behind your brand.
2) Be Reliable
A strong customer relationship is built on trust. If you promise your client something, then stay true to your word and deliver what you promised. For example, if you informed your client that their product will be ready by a specific date, then make sure you deliver on (or before) that date. Do not make false promises or give false hopes. Be truthful at all times in order to maintain the best relationship. Everyone knows that trust is the basis for every kind of relationship.
If your customer satisfied with your product or service? If the answer is no, then you need to listen to the customer and understand how you can make things better. Satisfied customers stay on for the long-term, which helps you now and into the future. Be patient during your conversation, so the customer feels you are investing your time in them. Don’t try to quickly fix their problem, so that you can hang up the phone and move on to the next customer. Remember that every touchpoint with a customer counts.
4) Go the Extra Mile
Generosity goes a long way. There are many ways you can provide treats and perks to your customers. You may provide them with coupons for future discounts, provide free coffee or tea, or maybe throw in something free with the purchase of a product. Anything extra is always appreciated by people, because they’re getting more than they expected. Most importantly, be nice at all times. Giving a "smile" is a key part of great customer service.
I hope you found Tony's tips helpful. Use the comments area below to let me know how YOU achieve unforgettable customer service. And, if you’re a DNN customer, visit our
Customer Success Network, where you’ll find a number of helpful resources.