This is Brian Prawitz with BP Media Solutions. I love customer service. Customer service is sometimes more important than the product you’re selling.
Customer service is what you do when somebody doesn’t like your product or something has gone wrong and they don’t expect you to be able to fix it. You fix it anyway because you care about them.
Customer service is about going above and beyond. Making it so that your clients or your customers feel like they’re the only client or customer that you have. And we strive for that at BP Media Solutions, but I want to tell you a story and that might help you with your customer service.
There was an old ice cream shop up in the Puget Sound area called Farrell’s. And the owner of Farrell’s is famous because he ended up doing a training seminar, this whole training, a philosophy course essentially, that was spread out to all kinds of other businesses. They all emulated this guy’s attitude. And his attitude was give them the pickle. And here’s the story behind that.
Give Them The Pickle
I guess I’m stealing a little bit from him, but it’s so good. I got to share it with you. So the idea is that everybody that bought a sandwich when they went to Farrell’s you got a free pickle. And one day somebody decided, well, somebody didn’t get a pickle. And when he told the waiter that he didn’t get a pickle and he wanted another one, rather than giving him another pickle, which might’ve been 5 cents, the waiter didn’t give him a pickle. They didn’t believe him. Farrell’s found out about this is because he got a letter in the mail from the guy saying, he’s never going to go to a Farrell’s again. And he’s telling all of his friends to boycott Farrell’s over a pickle.
What would it have cost them to just give him the pickle? It would’ve cost 5 cents. And the customer is right and go above and beyond and do something for the customer to make them feel good. I mean, just do the right thing.
Go The Extra Mile
Well, customer service, it works the same way with your business. Go the extra mile, give them that extra effort, whatever you do. Even if it’s a little thing that maybe cost you a couple extra cents, if it makes that customer happy. And by the way, a really upset customer can sometimes become one of your most loyal, dedicated ambassadors out there. If you turn that emotional moment, that person will be loyal to you and a huge fan of your business for forever.
Recipe For Success
The other story from Farrell’s I love to tell is the story about singing Happy Birthday. So the big deal about Farrell’s was you’d go there when you were a kid, your parents would take you there and they’d sing Happy Birthday to you and you’d get a free Sundae and they probably gave you a balloon or something.
And the owner tells the story of being at the register one day and a family comes up and the dad’s all agitated and mad and the mom’s crying behind him and the little kids standing there. And he didn’t look real happy. And the owner of Farrell’s said, “What’s the matter?” And the guy wouldn’t tell him and he said, “You can’t fix it anyway.” And he insisted, “Please tell me what the matter?” And the dad said, “I brought my son here for his fifth birthday and nobody sang Happy Birthday to him. And I’m leaving and we’re upset and whatever.” And the owner said, “Don’t move.”
And he scooped up the kid and he stuck them on the counter and he grabbed the next Sundae going by and he stuck it in the kid’s hand. And he got the entire store to sing him Happy Birthday. And the kid was happy and the parents were crying. And it basically it didn’t cost anything. It was just following through. Almost one of those things like, do what you say you’re going to do. That’s exactly what he did.
But again, another example of great customer service, look for those opportunities to wow your customers just by doing something extra in those key moments. And your marketing is important, but we can’t market lousy customer service. So make your customer service great. Make your marketing great and you’ve got a recipe for success.
About the Author Brian Prawitz, owner of BP Media Solutions.
Brian’s passion for customer service led to the creation and launch of BP Media Solutions in May of 2015. “Going the extra mile, providing face-to-face accountability, and exceeding goals are all things I live for.” Brian spent 25 years in radio as an award-winning news and sports announcer in Seattle, Missoula, Montana, and Roseburg, Oregon. He spent 18 months in the Marketing Department at Seven Feathers Casino Resort before BP Media Solutions was born.
Brian and his wife Jannie were empty nesters for about three months before welcoming all three of their grown daughters and one son-in-law home from various colleges in 2020. They love camping, theater, Disneyland, and (Brian loves) golf.
To connect with Brian: firstname.lastname@example.org
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