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ProTip: A Lesson from Samsung on Knowing Your Customers

Michelle Nitchie | Dec 4, 2014 8:00:00 AM

Faces_Globe_SSamsung had a problem.  Its culture was static and inward-looking.  Then, in the early 1990s, Lee Kun-Hee, chairman of the South Korean electronics giant, made a decision that would reshape his organization and create a blueprint for globalization.  He sent a handful of the brightest young employees to far-away corners of the globe to immerse themselves in the culture, learn the language, and build networks so that someday Samsung would know how to supply those markets.  What an amazing investment in the future.

- Verne Harnish, The Greatest Business Decisions of All Time

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Topics: Business Skills, Customer Experience, Branding, Customer Feedback, Innovation, Communication

Customer Surveys: How to Do Them Right

Katie Scheer | Oct 28, 2014 10:00:00 AM

There are many compelling and rather obvious reasons why you should survey your customers. For example, they help you to:

  • Increase Satisfaction
  • Enhance Loyalty
  • Open Up Communication
  • Recognize Successes and Opportunities
  • Pinpoint Trends
  • Identify Areas of Additional Leverage for Growth
  • ...and many more!

But, today consumers are bombarded with surveys, and often times we can't hang up a call fast enough when the oh-so-pleasant automated recording says, "please stay on the line for our 2-minute survey..."  So how do we pull off creating an engaging survey that can result in those benefits listed above?  Zendesk has some great tips, which are here in an excerpt from one of their infographics (click on it to see the whole graphic and article):

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Topics: Being Attentive, Customer Feedback

The Power of Empowering Your Customers

Katie Scheer | Sep 2, 2014 10:00:00 AM

empowerThere's no better way to market your company or to add some "pow!" to your credibility than to have your satisfied customers do the work for you.  When you give these happy customers the power to make a difference in your business, they automatically become more emotionally invested in the relationship and your company's success.  Everyone likes to know that their voice has been heard and that they have made a positive impact, so why wouldn't you capitalize on your biggest marketing asset- your current customers- by empowering them to help you to be better and to earn more business?

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Topics: Listening, Marketing, Customer Feedback, Empowerment

Differentiating Customer Service for the Intangible

Katie Scheer | Jun 10, 2014 10:00:00 AM

Think of your most recent purchases. What were they?  What do you like most about them, or what made you decide to buy them?  Perhaps some of your purchases were things like gas for your car (you appreciate being able to get from point “a” to point “b”), lunch (you LOVE the taste of fresh veggie fajitas), and flip flops (great color and so comfortable).  Now let's go back- when I asked about your most recent purchases, did you consider any that were for intangible items and services?  I bet 90% of you say “no,” and the reason is that for many of these, there is nothing for you to touch, taste, smell, and see; therefore, it’s harder for you to think about these items as actual purchases since you can’t picture them, or their benefits, in your mind (you can't exactly taste or smell what good health insurance is, right?).  If you are in a company that sells services, this should give you pause. With few or no tangible characteristics to what you are selling, it is harder for you to differentiate yourselves from your competition. Your customers instead have to consider price, reliability, customer service, and performance when they decide to buy from you.

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Topics: Customer Service Skills, Exceeding Expectations, Customer Service, Customer Experience, Problem Resolution, Customer Feedback

Anticipate, Manage, and Exceed Customer Expectations

Katie Scheer | May 13, 2014 10:00:00 AM

snail2Long gone are the days of using snail mail and placing catalog orders during business transactions.  Something that used to take days upon days to reach fruition now happens in literally moments.  With nearly a billion websites available at our fingertips and >100 social networking sites to join along with the use of email, smartphones, and tablets, we are always "connected" and can make decisions rapidly.  What does this mean from a customer service standpoint?  This means that customers are demanding, have lots of choices, and are in control.  

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Topics: Being Attentive, Customer Service, Customer Experience, Customer Feedback

Why You Need to Openly Accept Customer Feedback

Katie Scheer | Apr 29, 2014 10:00:00 AM

Do you make it easy for your customers to give feedback, both good and bad?  Also, when you get the feedback do you openly accept it and respond quickly?  You should.  As John Russell, former Managing Director of Harley-Davidson Europe said, “The more you engage with customers the clearer things become and the easier it is to determine what you should be doing.”  The feedback that you get from your customers, and what you choose to do with it, is paramount to maintaining longevity and acquiring loyal customers in this unpredictable consumer market.  The comments you get will give you the tools you require to always meet your customers’ needs.

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Topics: Being Attentive, Customer Service, Customer Experience, Customer Feedback

Tips and resources on how to be a master of customer service and sales; to improve yourself personally, as an employee, and as a leader; and much more.

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