Fanatical a/b Customer Service & Customer Experience. SMB owner / franchise developer. I dig dogs and MMA, but not combined. Run the Customers That Stick blog.
@Shonali Tell me about it. I was about to break out my best Daniel Day Lewis on the cell phone "Stay alive. I will find you!" :) @bdorman264 @ginidietrich @jeanniecw
2 months, 1 week ago on The Spin Sucks Inquisition: Shonali Burke
@dbvickery And I still have the video to prove it!
@Shonali @bdorman264 I am definitely looking to getting the band back together in August. Though Bill I don't think your lost in the woods story, can compare to my lost in Downtown Disney with Shonali story. Talk about a real survival situation. :)
@ginidietrich Very good choice! You're so right; I really can listen to Shonali's "lilt" for hours! PS. Think I might be making it to Chicago in a few months. Start shining those dinner shoes. @jeanniecw is going to buy a new formal dress for the occasion.
What a vein-opening post Gini. I'm sure it was as hard for you to write as it was for Lindsay to read. These decisions are always tough for both sides. I'm sure Lindsay will be a rock star wherever the road takes her!
2 months, 2 weeks ago on Losing a Valuable Team Member is Hard
@bdorman264 I don't know anything about the company, but what I liked about @belllindsay 's approach is that she handled it respectfully -- allowing for private resolution multiple times before going to social media, and then being "polite" once on social. Orgs have to deal with so many customers who do not take accountability or who do not approach situations rationally that they should certainly do their best to work with customers when they find a brand fan who is being calm and open-minded. I'm not saying they should replace the band, though they should certainly take into account the customer's hassle factor after having to replace 3 bands in under a year. Regardless, they should certainly have continued the dialogue and looked for a way to work with the customer.
8 months, 2 weeks ago on Brick Walls and Bad Social Media: Lessons from Jawbone
So sorry Ken... It's always tougher when it happens suddenly.
To some, they are just pets, but to others, like us, they are family members. They inhabit a place in our lives that really is hard to capture with words.
9 months, 2 weeks ago on Saying Goodbye to a Trusted Friend
@Howie Goldfarb @Adam | Customer Experience @ginidietrich Dude, either pay for our platinum support service or get used to the muzak. You should have learned by now! :)
1 year ago on Spin Sucks (the Book) is Here!
@ginidietrich @Adam | Customer Experience Tell me about it!
This is so cool Gini! So very happy for you. Now, let's get you on that NYT bestseller list!
PS. It's been a long time since I've been able to say this -- I beat Ken! @kmueller62
This was awesome Howie! I just have one question: who is Gini Dietrich and why are you writing posts about her?
1 year, 2 months ago on Follow Monday: Say Happy Birthday to Gini Dietrich!
@rdopping @LauraPetrolino So, I like to show up fashionably late to these parties. Ahem.
Thanks for tagging me Ralph -- I do agree and am a huge Publix fan. One of the things I always look for is context. How is the customer service relative to industry peers? You can't compare a grocery chain to the Ritz Carlton, but that's what is impressive about Publix, its customer service stands out not only amongst direct competitors but against premium plays like Whole Foods and most other non-grocery brick and mortar shops. How? For all of the reasons, Laura mentions.
If I knew the details better, I'd tell the story that happened to one of my employees when Publix messed up her mom's birthday cake and what they did to fix it. Completely above and beyond!
Great post Laura! On the grocery front, we're both very lucky to live in the F-L-A. Not so lucky when it comes to mosquitoes and snakes though.
PS. Ralph, did you know Publix is HQ'd in the back yard of our good buddy @bdorman264
1 year, 2 months ago on How’s Your Internal Customer Service?
@ginidietrich @Adam | Customer Experience I wouldn't have except for @Howie Goldfarb tagging me!
Who, me, need reminders? Never. :)
1 year, 3 months ago on Time Management: A Challenge to Make You More Productive
@Howie Goldfarb @AnneReuss @lauraclick @ginidietrich @adamtoporek Seriously Howie, exactly what else would you be doing besides that? Laura was awesome! Now, I just need to get you on there too. :)
@Randy Milanovic @ginidietrich Hey Randy, that's similar to the David Allen Getting Things Done philosophy. Kudos to you if you've mastered it! I probably hit 70% or so handling only once... maybe.
Don’t sell it short Gini, I think we can get that auction thing to work!
While I never cared for that Times piece, your take on this is an approach that I think brings a lot of value.
I know people who are busy for what seems like busy’s sake; I also know people who are legitimately just busy. Their goals, responsibilities, or both simply exceed the workable hours in a month — no matter how effective and efficient they are.
While a lot of short term busyness has to do with timing, I think in the long term it always comes down to tradeoffs and priorities — less money for more time, less audacious goals for more “balance”. (And I think it’s important in a forum like this to keep in mind that if you have a choice in any of this that you are very fortunate; many people do not.)
The best thing I’ve ever seen on this topic is a NatGeo documentary called Stress: Portrait of a Killer. Pretty sure I saw it on Netflix. Can’t say it’s changed my life much in the short term, but at least I know what the goal should be.
Now, if you can just send me this post once a month for a reminder, I’ll be all set! :)
Ken, it's been interesting to see the different perspectives that have come out in the wake of his passing. You pulled out some great lessons, particularly forgiveness. His ability to move past his past and to focus on a positive future was always one of the qualities that I admired about him.
1 year, 4 months ago on Leadership Lessons From Nelson Mandela
Ken, I love the proactive aspect of this interaction. And you're right, in the end, the audience is not just the people who were part of the incident (and might never see the post) but the wider audience of the orchard's Facebook fans.
Excellent customer service story!
1 year, 5 months ago on How One Small Business Pre-Empted Negative Feedback
What excellent advice Gini! Agree with everything. I'll add these:
1. Cash, cash, cash. Ok, you said it, but you really can't say it enough.
2. Understand these concepts: risk/reward, barriers to entry, and competitive advantage. View most ideas through these lenses, and it can help filter out really good ideas from ones that just seem good at the time.
3. (And you will never find this in a management book.) If you are in retail or something with heavy supplies or inventory, buy the cheapest pickup truck you can before you open your business. My car has been absolutely trashed from moving boxes, furniture, signage, etc. :)
1 year, 6 months ago on Experience: The One Business Regret I Have
Ken, what a great synopsis! The study on trust in advertising is a nice compliment, because it shows one of the key reasons retention is so valuable -- because word of mouth is so valuable.
I liked that you pointed out how "forgiving" people tend to be overall. This is why great service recovery is so essential to retention. The ball will get dropped. If we handle it right, we can make the relationship even stronger.
Thanks for featuring the infographic!
1 year, 6 months ago on The Secret Sauce Formula for Retaining Customers (Infographic)
Does @ginidietrich realize how big time Soulati Media On The Street is? Hmmn. Good stuff -- and yes, @lauraclick two of my favorite peeps too!
1 year, 7 months ago on Soulati Media On The Street With @GiniDietrich
Wow Gini — 7 years! That truly is amazing. But even more amazing is the fact that you’ve created what, IMHO, is the strongest blog community on the Interwebz.
You deserve it all. Kudos!
1 year, 7 months ago on Seven Years of Blogging. Happy Birthday, Spin Sucks!
@bdorman264 That's great Bill... now, I have to say something nice.
I think the economy picking up has had an affect also. Fewer people spending as much time focused on online biz models.
1 year, 7 months ago on No Comments On The Blog!
Appreciate the inclusion Shonali! An excellent collection of posts.
1 year, 8 months ago on Monday Roundup: Seeing is Believing
Jayme = Ninja. Just sayin...
1 year, 8 months ago on The Happy Friday Series: Taekwondo Humbled
@Soulati | Hybrid PR Blazing Saddles reference -- and I think we just made Josh's point for him!
1 year, 8 months ago on What Happens When PR/Marketing Professionals Use 'Authentic Frontier Gibberish'
Candygram for Mongo. :)
1 year, 8 months ago on 50 Small Business Blogs To Watch: Infusionsoft Infographic
Josh, you've finally hit the big time. This just goes to show you that if you work long enough and hard enough, you can eventually get @ginidietrich to say something nice about you.
Congrats on the #FF! Well-deserved.
1 year, 8 months ago on #FollowFriday: Josh Wilner
@ginidietrich @bdorman264 Well, he does blush when you call him Abigail, so I'm thinking yeah.
I think you and I are channeling each other this week with the customer silence theme. :)
I really liked your observation "And yet, I’ve let it go on for some time, denying him some relief. Why? Because it hasn’t really bothered me that much. I can put up with the sound and the scratching because it’s not me." I think that dynamic is at play in customer service more than most would like to admit.
Hope Shadow is feeling better!
1 year, 8 months ago on Pay Attention to What Your Customers Aren’t Saying
@Howie Goldfarb @belllindsay Some actions are really more symbolic than actually great service. The CEO email thing -- I think it's excellent, because his office is responding and he probably does read a handful once in awhile. What really makes it great is that it sends a signal to the team downstream that the organization is dedicated to customers and takes service seriously.
To your question in the post Lindsay, I don't believe that customer service in the aggregate can ever be too good; however, individual instances of service can be exceptional enough that they raise expectations for something that really cannot be repeated. For example, the recent story about the airline CEO who gave up a seat on a flight for a sick child. A great symbolic gesture for sure (great PR too, isn't that right @ginidietrich ?) and it was great service to that one family, but it's not scalable and is unlikely to ever be repeated.
Speaking of great service... Howie, how long have I had you on hold now?
1 year, 9 months ago on Customer Service: Should You Try for Second Place?
Love the breakdown Howie! The Apple Strategy made me laugh out loud.
As an SMB guy, I am partial to the Owner Strategy, though it is hard to replicate Owners -- and of course, the Customer Service Strategy.
1 year, 9 months ago on What is Your Social Media Strategy?
@kumarjit Thank you for your comment. I think I'll defer to the PR pros around here and let them answer your question.
1 year, 10 months ago on Why Public Relations Should Remember Customer Expectations
@Shonali You're right (of course); it works in that direction as well. It's really about open communication and creating a feedback loop where PR can help shape the product/service and where it can also be aware of the realities of the product/service when creating expectations in the marketplace.
PS. Thanks for letting me GP at your place! I enjoyed it.
@ginidietrich @Adam | Customer Experience I think it still works well! I like that when business leaders see it they know what problems of theirs the book is supposed to solve.
On a side note... I wonder if all authors nowadays should just start listing Matt Cutts as co-author by default. :)
1 year, 10 months ago on Vote for the Spin Sucks Subtitle
Okay, as far as I can tell you want to have either "communication" or "reputation" in it. How about a variation of #5... Spin Sucks: Controlling Your Business Reputation in an Out-Of-Control World. Just trying to add a little sizzle to the inevitably tasty content steak. :)
Voting for 5. #1 without "new" is 2nd choice.
@Danny Brown @Adam | Customer Experience No fun. I hate having to make the SEO v. Clever Title choice when I'm writing some dinky little blog post. I don't envy having to do it when launching a book.
@Soulati | B2B Social Media Marketing I have a hard time using the iPad for commenting too. More the typing thing though...
@Soulati | B2B Social Media Marketing Glad to see you stood your ground. :) Not to paint all time shares with the same brush, or even a negative brush, but most are built around a "hard sell" model. That's why they can afford to bring families in, feed them, lodge them, etc. They know they can close at a rate high enough and their product is profitable enough that paying an extraordinary price per lead is worth it. Also, by giving you so much, they are able to push those reciprocity triggers pretty hard.
That being said, what I really took away from your comment is that you are buying me a trip to Hawaii. Did I read that right? :)
Before I vote, who is your target market? I mean... besides Google.
You make a good point Erin. It's bad enough when marketing or PR creates expectations that cannot be met through the customer experience. It's even worse to think that marketing can make up for a bad experience.
Love the email story Gini! I am stealing... I mean sharing.
1 year, 10 months ago on The Three Things, Edition 35
@rdopping @Adam | Customer Experience Thanks Ralph. I'll leave the squeezing of @bdorman264 to @ginidietrich but I'll try to at least say something nice to him for you. :)
1 year, 10 months ago on The Client Service Issue in a Virtual Workplace
So much has been said, I think I'll just add that any firm who limits hours and client connectivity (outside of expected norms) while trying to accommodate the new work will place itself at a competitive disadvantage and open itself up to poaching. If you can provide superior client service from home, or the top of Kilimanjaro, that's great. It's not the Where so much (at least for creative/comm jobs) as it is the Who, How, and When.
I'm not surprised that it's a well-known fact that acknowledging universal truths is not a secret. Just sayin...
1 year, 10 months ago on Why Mediocre Writing Is All Jane Austen’s Fault
You redecorated... and now Jack Bauer is texting me saying he can't find his food bowl!
The site looks great! Very clean and easy-to-read. Kudos to you and the SS team!
1 year, 11 months ago on How to Choose Social Media Tools
Thanks for sharing Shonali -- and a nice CS roundup!
51 tips... I might have to read that one in installments. Enjoyed @dbvickery 's story -- more than Brian did, I'm sure! :)
1 year, 11 months ago on Friday Roundup: Customer Service
Well, I missed this -- but good for you! BTW, if you need tips on how to handle these folks in the future, there's an Arizona bakery in the news today that seems to have figured it out. :)
1 year, 11 months ago on A Blogging Community: Why it’s Important to Have One
Congrats Sean! Very exciting news, and I know you'll knock it out of the park!
1 year, 11 months ago on I’ve Accepted a New Job with Sears