Is Great Customer Service Contagious? Jerome | February 25th, 2009

In my last post, I asked whether people prefer to contact customer service by phone or email. People shared some great stories and advice in the comments. I want to especially thank Doc Kane - I tried his strategy (see Doc’s comment to my last post) the very next day with UPS and it works!!! Big thanks to everyone who joined that conversation. Your feedback was awesome and taught us a great deal!

Lately, I’ve been thinking about how crowdSPRING can promote great customer service across our entire community. We recognize that as a company, we must provide great customer service. But we are also seeing some outstanding examples of customer service directly in our community.

Is great customer service contagious? Can an online community share the values of great customer service?

Our recent experience suggests that the answer to both questions is YES.

Last week we experienced a very heavy load on our database server early in the morning (due to heavy traffic). The site crashed by 8:30 a.m. CST. While the site was down, it was impossible for our community to contact us via the site. This is where things got interesting.

Even though people could not access the site, they found creative ways to contact us. They found our email addresses and reached out directly to us to let us know the site crashed. This happened within minutes – before we realized we had a problem. Here’s what we thought was most amazing about those emails –  people were worried about access to the site by the whole community – not just their own ongoing projects.

Our team promptly reacted and fixed the problem within 20 minutes. Because our normal systems were not working during that brief outage, we had to find creative ways to help customers. For example, Chris, one of our talented developers, brilliantly handled direct emails from users and reassured them that the site would be back up quickly.

During that brief period of time, our team and our community were one – together finding ways to fix the problem which caused the outage and keep users informed. This was truly amazing!

We continue to be amazed by the fact that this was not an isolated example.  We see collaboration in our marketplace, in our forums, and in our blog. We see creatives helping each other in the forums. We see the entire community collaborating to improve both our marketplace and our rules and procedures. Many in the community are helping us to drive essential changes that will improve the user experience for everyone. It’s a competitive environment for sure – but the level of collaboration is fun to watch.

So what does it take to make good customer service contagious? What do you do to empower your team and your community to collaborate?

Photo Credit: detritus

Need something designed? Name your price. Pick from 110+ entries. Love it or your money back.

Like our blog? You’ll freaking love our Twitter updates. Oh, and you’ll dig our Facebook page too.

  • VictoriaAnnDesign

    I too find this group of creatives really helpful and understanding which is why I have pretty much ditched the other site I submitted to in favour of crowdSPRING. I’m sure the buyers are just as friendly – I have only had limited contact with them so don’t feel qualified to comment but all in all – this is a great community.

  • Conference Call

    I find the way to make customer service contagious (especially within your compnay), is to surround yourself with caring employees. If they care about the product they are selling, or the service they are providing, good customer service will come naturally.

    Also, giving employees and the community a say-so (the opportunity to express an opinion, be heard, and promote change) gives them a vested interest. Customer service then becomes personal and natural, instead of demanded and forced.

  • Conference Call

    I find the way to make customer service contagious (especially within your compnay), is to surround yourself with caring employees. If they care about the product they are selling, or the service they are providing, good customer service will come naturally.

    Also, giving employees and the community a say-so (the opportunity to express an opinion, be heard, and promote change) gives them a vested interest. Customer service then becomes personal and natural, instead of demanded and forced.

  • ArtbyAudree

    I think the community has a great opportunity to bond by using the forums and the PM system. When everyone’s ideas, complaints, and praise are LISTENED to… it makes a big difference. I am inspired by the creatives who take the time to respond to another’s quest for help, and the posting of helpful links. They don’t have to do it… they just do. How cool is that?

  • moser

    Customer service definitely starts with the company’s attitude toward its community – you set the house rules. If we’re all in this together and respectful, open communication is the norm (the good and the bad), that feeling comes through and creates some comradery. This site has so many opportunities for human interaction and it’s always easier to help someone out when we feel like there is a “someone” on the other end rather than a corporate system, nameless competitor, etc. I wonder how instant messenger would work in a community like this.

  • moser

    Customer service definitely starts with the company’s attitude toward its community – you set the house rules. If we’re all in this together and respectful, open communication is the norm (the good and the bad), that feeling comes through and creates some comradery. This site has so many opportunities for human interaction and it’s always easier to help someone out when we feel like there is a “someone” on the other end rather than a corporate system, nameless competitor, etc. I wonder how instant messenger would work in a community like this.

  • Pingback: How To Make Your Customers Happy — LucaFiligheddu.com

  • Pingback: How To Make Your Customers Happy | Telecom Update

  • Pingback: Do you really collaborate with your customers? Part 1 | Small business growth

Hey, it's crowdSPRING!

Tens of thousands of the world's best and most successful entrepreneurs, businesses, agencies and nonprofits rely on crowdSPRING for affordable and risk-free custom logo design, web design, a new company name or other writing and design services. More than 162,000 designers and writers work on crowdSPRING. We create designs and names people love. 100% guaranteed.

Get Blog Updates

Free E-Books

12 Question Interviews with cS designers.
Get it »

Contracts for designers who hate contracts.
Get it »

Contracts for software developers who hate contracts. Get it »

More in Small business, Start ups (432 of 535 articles)

/** chartbeat **/