Togo's exec shares 5 ways to delight unhappy customers

Oct. 14, 2016

By Simona Krebs, Manager of Brand and Guest Relations, Togo’s

We are in a great age when it comes to customer feedback. Actually, we probably have more data than we know what to do with. We have the ability to receive customer feedback and communicate with customers on the spot, while they are still in the midst of their praise or frustration.

The crucial part is how this data is used by the corporate team and all applicable parties, because the statistic should always be in the back of our minds that "for every customer complaint there are 26 other unhappy customers who have remained silent."

Ensuring all team members are on the same customer support page and that customer issues are addressed promptly and effectively across all platforms is the foundation to success.

The five best practices for customer support are:

1. Be your own customer
You cannot understand the voice of the customer if you haven't taken the time to truly be a customer and understand their perspective

2. Value each customer
Every customer who took the time to express their feedback is valuable and should be heard, acknowledged and responded to.

3. Review customer feedback from various platforms and social sites
There is so much data out there these days — direct guest feedback, review sites (Yelp, Google) and social media sites. You must review all and respond to all, if possible.

4. Share customer feedback with the team
Allow team members to see the good and the bad comments regularly — daily, if possible.

5. Create a response hierarchy
While a point person is needed to manage the customer support process, issues need to be handled by the appropriate person who fully understands the issue and how to best resolve it.

Putting the tips to work

At Togo’s, it’s important to address guest issues quickly, acknowledge that their feedback matters, and keep them as loyal fans, even when we may make a mistake.

Recently, a guest contacted us about a disappointing radio giveaway promotion. She was unable to participate in the giveaway because the promotion had already ended. We immediately sent the response below:

Thank you for contacting us and we're sorry for any confusion with the giveaway on Friday. We gave out 500 free wraps in less than 5 minutes, and all those that signed up received their email on Sunday morning. I've reviewed the sign-up list and we didn't find your name or email on the list, so we apologize if there was a glitch in the system. Please send me your mailing address, and I'll send you a $5 gift card to use on your next visit to any Togo's to enjoy a wrap.

In another recent example, a guest contacted us because his wife was disappointed when her Togo’s 40th anniversary cup fell off the roof of their car and broke. Since we no longer had the anniversary cups in stock, we surprised them by mailing a note along with one of our current orange Togo’s reusable cups. The guest replied with the note below:

THANK YOU SO MUCH! My wife loves the new cup. It was VERY kind of you to send that to us. I was simply floored when the package arrived, as I didn't get your earlier email. We are, have been, and always will be a fanatic for TOGO'S. Simply put, your generosity and kindnesshasonly amplified our faithfulness to the TOGO's sandwich shops we visit during our travels.

Sometimes our guests want to vent, and they think public posts such as those on Yelp are not really read and reviewed, so they are often surprised and impressed with our quick responses. This also gives them another perspective of Togo’s, and their disappointment is diminished, allowing us to keep them as loyal Togo’s guests.

The ability to engage with customers and take action quickly on their feedback gives us the ability to keep customers loyal and keep them as our customers. The customer feedback space will continue to grow and evolve, and the importance of customer support will play a larger role at the corporate roundtable.

photo istock


Topics: Customer Service / Experience


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