Meshwork Consulting

Customer Service — Pure Satisfaction

Last year I received a call that still leaves me smiling. It’s a simple story of customer service gone good. 

I’m helping my sister’s business with their marketing plan. They needed a domain name and hosting. I’d researched domain name registrars and settled on GoDaddy. My decision was based on some personal and business recommendations; GoDaddy’s competitive pricing plans; and some added (free) privacy protection with my registration.

I created an account and purchased the domains for Reserve Cigar and Wine Bar. Everything went smoothly, and after purchasing some hosting from Lunarpages, I made the server changes on GoDaddy and we were in business. Bottom line — it was a smooth process. 

The following day I got a call from a GoDaddy customer service rep. I thought “Oh no, I must have clicked the wrong button when I made the server changes, and now they’re going to pitch me on their own hosting services….argh!” Instead, the rep thanked me for choosing them for my business; confirmed that the server changes were correct; asked if I had any questions; and let me know that I could call 24 hours a day. He also asked me what made me choose their service.

This is a great example of customer service, sales and marketing working together. The benefits are a satisfied customer who will return again and again for more business; an open channel of communication and feedback that allows GoDaddy to improve their service offering; and marketing intelligence that helps GoDaddy confirm that they’re on target with their unique selling proposition. 

Do you have any examples of good customer service?

Blogging and Your Business

I’m a huge fan of blogging. In fact, I manage four blogs. That might be a little excessive for most, but I enjoy getting readers involved. Most people thing about MySpace when they think about blogging. Blogs are great for social networking and they can be a very productive tool that complements your marketing efforts, as well as enhances the “stickiness” of your web site in relation to search engines. Now, before you head off and create a blog filled with ads and copies of your press releases with the expectation that you’ll get to the first page of a Google search, you have to consider a few things.
Blogs generate interest if you’re sincere about your industry or market. Readers are turned off to viewing blogs full of PR spin. It’s a total buzz kill. Think about your customers — would they spend more time reading a collection of your ads or press releases, or reading about how your expertise can help them succeed in their efforts? I’m not talking about giving away the farm in terms of your knowledge, expertise or services. I’m talking about giving your customers a sense of community in which they can interact and comment on your productive opinions in your industry.
For example, one client of mine is a wine and cigar bar. We’re integrating a blog into their web site. A great use of their blog is to use it as a forum for reporting on wines and cigars that they’ve recently tasted or smoked. If I were a customer, or prospective customer, I’d enjoy reading about the latest tastings and arming myself with the knowledge to make a good buy — hopefully in the blogger’s establishment. The blog would build credibility and authenticity with the wine and cigar bar’s patrons. And they can be active participants in the bar’s “community” by discussing the bloggers experiences — fostering evangelists for their business.
In my following posts, I’ll write about content as it relates to optimizing your site for search engines. Later, I’ll share more about making your blog your primary customer communication vehicle, as well as some quick (and free) ways to get the word out about your blog.
In the meantime, let me know your thoughts about blogging and customer communications tools.I’m a huge fan of blogging. In fact, I manage four blogs. That might be a little excessive for most, but I enjoy getting readers involved. Most people thing about MySpace when they think about blogging. Blogs are great for social networking and they can be a very productive tool that complements your marketing efforts, as well as enhances the “stickiness” of your web site in relation to search engines. Now, before you head off and create a blog filled with ads and copies of your press releases with the expectation that you’ll get to the first page of a Google search, you have to consider a few things.
Blogs generate interest if you’re sincere about your industry or market. Readers are turned off to viewing blogs full of PR spin. It’s a total buzz kill. Think about your customers — would they spend more time reading a collection of your ads or press releases, or reading about how your expertise can help them succeed in their efforts? I’m not talking about giving away the farm in terms of your knowledge, expertise or services. I’m talking about giving your customers a sense of community in which they can interact and comment on your productive opinions in your industry.
For example, one client of mine is a wine and cigar bar. We’re integrating a blog into their web site. A great use of their blog is to use it as a forum for reporting on wines and cigars that they’ve recently tasted or smoked. If I were a customer, or prospective customer, I’d enjoy reading about the latest tastings and arming myself with the knowledge to make a good buy — hopefully in the blogger’s establishment. The blog would build credibility and authenticity with the wine and cigar bar’s patrons. And they can be active participants in the bar’s “community” by discussing the bloggers experiences — fostering evangelists for their business.
In my following posts, I’ll write about content as it relates to optimizing your site for search engines. Later, I’ll share more about making your blog your primary customer communication vehicle, as well as some quick (and free) ways to get the word out about your blog.
In the meantime, let me know your thoughts about blogging and customer communications tools.

I’m a huge fan of blogging. In fact, I manage four blogs but will reduce that to two. That might be a little excessive for most, but I enjoy getting readers involved. Blogs are great for social networking and they can be a very productive tool that complements your marketing efforts, as well as enhances the “stickiness” of your web site in relation to search engines. Now, before you head off and create a blog filled with ads and copies of your press releases with the expectation that you’ll get to the first page of a Google search, you have to consider a few things.

Blogs generate interest if you’re sincere about your industry or market. Readers are turned off to viewing blogs full of PR spin. It’s a total buzz kill. Think about your customers — would they spend more time reading a collection of your ads or press releases, or reading about how your expertise can help them succeed in their efforts? I’m not talking about giving away the farm in terms of your knowledge, expertise or services. I’m talking about giving your customers a sense of community in which they can interact and comment on your productive opinions in your industry.

For example, one client of mine owns a wine and cigar bar. We’re integrating a blog into their web site. A great use of their blog is to use it as a forum for reporting on wines and cigars that they’ve recently tasted or smoked. If I were a customer, or prospective customer, I’d enjoy reading about the latest tastings and arming myself with the knowledge to make a good buy — hopefully in the blogger’s establishment. The blog would build credibility and authenticity with the wine and cigar bar’s patrons. And they can be active participants in the bar’s “community” by discussing the bloggers experiences — fostering evangelists for their business.

In my following posts, I’ll write about content as it relates to optimizing your site for search engines. Later, I’ll share more about making your blog your primary customer communication vehicle, as well as some quick (and free) ways to get the word out about your blog.

In the meantime, let me know your thoughts about blogging and customer communications tools.

Marketing For Real Estate Agents (and Lawyers, too)

Let me share a real life story with you (the names have been changed to protect the innocent who should be reading this). Two months ago, we were looking for a real estate agent to sell our home. After a nightmare selling our last house, we took the time to interview a bunch of prospective agents to represent out property (contact me if you’d like a copy of our questionnaire).

We whittled our choice down to two agents. Our top choice was solid, but choice No. 2 had a compelling selling story. She was an agent for a local firm, but her business card noted that she was from Sell Your Home For A Lot Properties. We first went to the firm’s site and searched all forms of her name to no avail. We then Googled her name, her company name, etc. and found nothing. Due to the lack of information, we selected our first group.

The lesson here: if you’re working for a big company, and have your own company as an agent for that big company, have your business information together online. That means that if you are marketing yourself as SuperAgent@SellYourPropertiesForALot.com, make sure you have a domain presence that brands yourself correctly. In other words, make sure people can find you quickly. 

My other peeve, is that agents oftentimes don’t want to use their big company domain as their regular e-mail address. Instead, they use their home e-mail address. Who are you marketing — yourself or msn.com, yahoo.com, cableone.com, etc.? Be professional. If you don’t know how, ask me. Again, I can help you look great. 

Bottom line: You look more professional, you brand yourself or your company, and you’re easily searchable by anyone in or outside of your area that’s looking for a home marketing pro in your area.

Have you seen something like this in other professions?

Let me share a real life story with you (the names have been changed to protect the innocent but should be reading this). Two months ago, we were looking for a real estate agent to sell our home. After a nightmare experiencing the sale of our last house, we took the time to interview a bunch of prospective agents to represent out property (e-mail me if you’d like a copy of our questionnaire). We whittled our choice down to two following our meetings with them. Our top choice was solid, but choice No. 2 had a compelling story. She was an agent for a local firm, but her business card noted that she was from Sell Your Home For A Lot Properties. We first went to the firm’s site and searched all forms of her name to no avail. We then went to SellYourPropertiesForALot.com and couldn’t find the site. We then Googled her name, her company name, etc. and found nothing. Due to the lack of information, we selected our first group.
The lesson here: if you’re working for a big company, and have your own company as an agent for that first company, have your business information together online. That means that if you are marketing yourself as SuperAgent@SellYourPropertiesForALot.com, make sure you have a domain presence that brands yourself correctly. In other words, make sure people can find you quickly. I can help you, affordably.
My other peeve, is that agents oftentimes don’t want to use their big company domain as their regular e-mail address. Instead, they use their home e-mail address. Who are you marketing — yourself, msn.com, yahoo.com, cableone.com, etc.? Be professional. If you don’t know how, ask me. Again, I can help you look great. 
You look more professional, you brand yourself or your company, and you’re easily searchable by anyone in or outside of your area that’s looking for a home marketing pro in your area.