Create Customer Happiness with a Simple Act of Kindness
We often forget how powerful the little things are each day. How the smallest acts of kindness, care, and respect for one another can often leave lasting impressions far larger than the act itself. The video above feels you with warmth inside and makes you think twice about how you can better interact with everyone around you. It's about how a simple meaningful gesture can brighten someone's day - and that is important!
In an article recently published by the New York Times, it appears that the term "pay-it-forward" is currently being employed in drive-thrus across the country. In one case, a line of 228 cars in a row payed it forward by paying for the car's order behind them. Reports of cars paying it forward in drive-thrus have been reported from across the country and in Canada. Why are people doing this?
These acts stem from people wanting to give back, pay it forward, or just make or save someone's day. There are so many problems, large and small, that surround all of us every day that we often forget how much of an impact a little act of kindness can have. It doesn't take lots of money or extravagant gifts to make someone happy. In one of my favorite videos below, captured by security cameras around the world, we see numerous small acts of kindness that may not mean much to the person doing them, but may mean the world to the person receiving them. Now, if people who don't know one another and have no kind of relation or connection at all find value in these acts of kindness shouldn't companies make the effort to give their customers a little smile as well? Without our customers we wouldn't be in business. We know how important our customers are but we often take them for granted and rarely take the time to thank them.
We are all very focused on creating great products and services with positive customer experiences, but we can bring our customers happiness outside our product as well.
A Great Customer Experience Is Not Just About the Product
A good customer experience begins with a great product, but ends with making your customers feel special or even loved. Build your business with customer happiness in the forefront of your mind. Be as real with them as you want them to be with you and you won't be disappointed. I know this all sounds a bit lofty, but don't just let it wash over you. Start a customer happiness campaign (conversation, activity, or anything!), take a step away from the desk (have you ever met a customer?), and be a company that people smile about when they hear your name.
Great customer experiences should extend beyond the product. Recently, I read a post about how one company, StatusPage.io, improves customer experience offline by handwriting notes (with some skittles!) to customers to show their appreciation. It takes less than 5 minutes to send a card to a customer. A handwritten note may not be scalable, but there are many ways to engage and make your customers feel valued and appreciated. A simple check-in with customers can go a long way.
At Apptentive, we have a phrase "People, Not Users" that represents how we approach interactions we have with our customers. We like our customers to know us as people not just a brand and we believe in letting them know they aren't just a user or number in a spreadsheet. Little acts of kindness such as sending handwritten notes can go a long way to building trust and developing a strong relationship with your customers. Every business, no matter what industry you're in, should aim to build relationships with their customers.
We know an awful lot about our customers these days and are more than capable of reaching out and being thoughtful in our thanks. Creating a bit of customer happiness is as simple as expressing genuine thanks and being thoughtful in how you do it, so go thank your customers today!
What small acts of kindness do you do for your customers? Share below and inspire others to start doing the same. The more ideas the better.
While we're on the subject of small acts of kindness, watch this amazing video from Thailand. It's ok if you cry, I've seen it more than ten times and still tear up every time.
Ezra Siegel is Apptentive's VP of Community. Apptentive provides in-app feedback tools for app developers to improve ratings/reviews and customer experiences in mobile apps. He can be found writing on topics ranging from customer service to mobile apps. You can read more along those lines at Apptentive’s blog, and keep up with Ezra and Apptentive on Facebook and Twitter.
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