John DiJulius | Customer Experience Blog

10 Best Customer Service Articles Of 2016

In case you missed them, the 10 most popular eServices of 2016 were the  following. I suggest printing them out, reading and sharing them with your management team.

10. Things You Don’t Want To Shop To The Lowest Bidder

There are certain things in life that you don’t want to price shop, look for discounts or take the lowest bid. Things like a heart surgeon or new brakes on your family vehicle.

The value placed on these services is extremely high and there is potential for irreversible damage. Which means in these circumstances you cannot afford to choose anything less than the best. How good of a job are you doing at creating value on the expertise and experience of your services? You need to make your Customers fear that if they choose anyone else, there will be irreversible damages. We need to educate our Customers that they cannot afford to go cheap.

9. Six Things That Make Yours The Brand Customers Cannot Live Without

We all have a company or two that we can’t fathom life without. What are the few companies that you would be extremely upset if I told you, “You can no longer do business with them, ever again?”  When I ask my audiences this question, the same brands always get mentioned: Apple, Starbucks, Nordstrom, & Amazon as well as local mom and pop shops. Now the important part is, think about what they have done and what they consistently do to make you so loyal, to make you feel that you cannot live without them. That is power. That is brand loyalty. The more people you can make feel like they cannot live without your brand, the closer you are to making price irrelevant.

8. What A 13 Year Old Can Teach Us About Customer Service

I have had the good fortune to experience and witness many professionals who truly know how to serve. However, there is one person in particular that consistently blows me away on how he builds rapport instantly with strangers and learns so much about other people in only a few minute conversation. This person is my thirteen-year old son, Bo DiJulius. I have been so intrigued by his ability to strike up a conversation with someone he has never met before and have him or her share so many intimate details with a teenager. So I asked Bo if he could share how he does it.

7. u r X

Customers crave recognition and a personalized experience. In short, technology cannot provide genuine hospitality. It cannot express empathy, make people feel good, take care of others, express emotions and vulnerability in a relatable way, or make people laugh. We have subconsciously sent the wrong message to all our employees, that it is about the technology – our website, apps, social media, virtual tour, iPads, kiosks, self-check out. So our employees have started using the technology as a crutch, thinking they have less importance, less of a role with the customer. They rely on the technology to provide the experience. We need to reverse that. Customer experience is 10% technology and you are 90%.
6. Put Your Own Mask On Before Helping Others

We have all heard the preflight safety announcements when the flight attendant says, “You must put on your own oxygen mask before helping those around you.” What use will you be to anyone else if you do not take care of yourself first? Think of how that applies to our life and what we need to do for ourselves before we are capable of impacting those around us.

5. Do You Suffer From RBF Syndrome?

RBF is something to be taken seriously in all of our businesses, with any of our Customer facing/interacting employees, whether it is face-to-face, ear-to-ear, or click-to-click. A smile is just as much a part of the uniform as anything else employees are required to wear: uniform, nametag, hat, and smile. Everyone should have a smile and it should be genuine. A smile shows teeth. In my companies, we have sent team members home for being “out of uniform,” for not smiling. I like to tell my employees, “If you are happy, tell your face.”

4. 100% of Your Sales Come From One Place

Leaders love to talk about revenue streams by showing graphs and charts with the breakdown of sales categories. It is important to know the percentage of sales generated by products or services and to monitor trends, especially growth and decline of your business revenue. However, there is one critical component that every business has in common, which is never discussed. 100% of your sales come from one place. Your customer! When you look at it that way, it sheds a stronger light on why companies need to put more emphasis on building an incredible consistent customer experience that becomes your number one competitive advantage and helps make price irrelevant.

3. The Battle Over Your Advertising Dollars vs. Customer Service Dollars

The average annual global budget spent on marketing and advertising is $500 billion a year compared to $9 billion spent on customer service.  The shortsighted obsession of constantly bringing new customers/traffic to your business is significantly more expensive than building an incredible customer experience. Companies spend millions creating and advertising their brands, yet the customer’s experience is what drives customer perception and loyalty.

2. What Is The Difference Between Customer Service & Customer Experience?

How do you know if you received an ‘Experience’ or just a ‘Service’? How do you know if you have delivered an ‘Experience’ or just a ‘Service’? Customer Service is WHAT you do; Customer Experience is HOW you do it. Turning what was once a mundane transaction into a unique memorable moment means you have to re-evaluate everything you do, every way you interact with your Customer, regardless of the length. It could be a one-hour face-to-face meeting, a conference call, a 10 second check-in, a call transfer, or an email reply.

1. I Collect The Best Thing Anyone Can Collect

My entire life I have been a collector of something very rare and priceless. People compliment me on my collection all the time. I believe it is the best gauge of a person’s character. I constantly stress to my three sons and all my employees that they should collect the same thing I do. What I collect are rare people in my life. The key word is rare, for I am extremely choosy on whom I collect. I collect relationships with uncommon, loyal, unique, high moral, genuine, and most importantly POSITIVE people. If people judge me by who I surround myself with, I am a champion.

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Vision Quest | Your Employees Have Been Brainwashed
57,000% Sales Growth in Three Years

Ever snacked on a Quest Bar? I love Quest Bars. Now I love them even more after learning about entrepreneur Tom Bilyeu, and how this incredible visionary grew his company Quest Nutrition 57,000% in just three years and his team of employees from six to over 1,400. Bilyeu’s company is the second fastest-growing private business in the U.S.


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Do You Suffer From RBF Syndrome?
The RBF Syndrome

RBF Poster Girl Anna Kendrick

For those who may not be aware, RBF is a face that, when at ease, is perceived as angry, irritated or simply … expressionless. It is popularly known as RBF (resting bitch face). It is commonly caused when a person makes a face, unaware, when thinking hard about something, in a zone, but perceived as unapproachable. There is even a Public Service Announcement regarding RBF.


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Part time employees hurting companies’ Customer Service
June 8, 2016, 6:07 am
Filed under: Customer Service, Customer Service skills
Are part-time employees hurting the Customer Experience your company delivers?
Since the recession and Health Care Reform we have seen a huge trend of companies shifting workers to part-time to lower payroll and avoid paying for employee health insurance. However, there is one company, Sheetz, headquartered in Altoona, PA, that is bucking that trend and is made up of a majority of full-time workers. Leaders at the convenience-store and gas-station chain say having full-time workers behind the register results in better customer service, lower turnover and a more engaged workforce.  Executives agree this will lead to higher sales and profits, which was reported in an article, “Full-Time Hires Buck the Trend at Fast-Food, Retail Chains.”


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The Ultimate Personalization App | Stop teaching employees how not to get fired
Win a ticket to the 2016 Secret Service Summit!

We want to hear the best things you took from last year’s Secret Service  Summit, how you implemented those into your business, and the results. Please submit a 90 second video sharing and showing what impacted you and how you used it in your business. The company with the best ideas and implementation will win a ticket to the 2016 Secret Service Summit. Send your video links to See example on our new blog.
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Be your own Undercover Boss – Meet Dr. Doom
February 25, 2016, 5:05 am
Filed under: Customer Service, Customer Service skills, Undercover Boss
I love the reality show, Undercover Boss. Recently, the show was partially filmed in my hometown of Cleveland and it got me thinking. (For those of you not familiar with the show, get with it and watch it!)  The show normally disguises a CEO from a company, in this case, it was Sam Dushey, CEO of Shoppers World, and it had him work on the front-line as an entry-level trainee. “Undercover Boss is the best way to hear first-hand from your employees and get an unfiltered glimpse of what happens on the floor and other areas we don’t generally see.” Do we really need a reality show to get the same results? Hopefully not. Here are three takeaways – and three actions to use — as an Undercover Boss.


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A Rare Gem: Waveability
January 13, 2016, 7:10 am
Filed under: Customer Service, Customer Service skills
I came up with this idea while running and introduced at last year’s #secretservicesummit.  As an avid runner, one of my favorite things to do whenever I get to a new city is to explore it on a run.  When I do this, I always take note of how the local runners greet one another.  Many times, runners passing one another acknowledge each other with a wave – which is really more than just a wave.  It is a vote of confidence; it is a reassurance that you are doing a great job.  It is saying, “You look great – keep it up!”  In some markets, this wave happens with every runner you pass.  In other markets, typically larger ones, waves may be few and far between.  I often wonder why?  Too many people, equating too many waves perhaps?
To read the full article visit our new blog…
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