Aida Zabidi
The world of customer service is smaller than you think, and one that relies heavily on the marketer. It seems that not a lot of people these days understand the true value of customer service these days – it makes all the difference when the seller is professional, and tries to do their best with each and every sale, regardless of how big or small. 

A friend of mine was initially in contact with a company called KahwinJom for a ‘mini-pelamin’ for her wedding, which was essentially setting up a small area around a dais with some decorations. The company she was initially in contact with set up a small meeting, but when she tried to schedule a meeting at a convenient place, they essentially blew her off by implying that they could not be flexible to ‘run around with the client for such a small piece of business’. All this over text. Little did they know that this friend was a leading heads in Malaysia’s world of social media – a valuable contact and the loss of potential future business. 

Another friend who attended a wedding expo turned away certain wedding planners because they would badmouth the other vendors who were at the same expo. “Why do you have to do business that way,” she remarked in disgust to us. 

Businesses need to understand that money isn’t everything – and nothing is as worthwhile as the social contacts you build up by being polite and helpful to consumers, especially in a world where word of mouth means a lot, both in a negative and positive way. The strong positive base you build with customers will take you to another level entirely, and the very same attitude will hold you steady in the years to come. 

A hair salon called Ridzokumura started off on Instagram, and from his early days, the accessibility of the owner to his followers resulted in his rise to success – I see requests to attend his salon from customers of other states as well. His salon is so full nowadays, but despite his rise to fame, he still remains humble and friendly, and it seems to be a concept that he has drilled into his staff as well. Now that’s a successful business model. 

As a doctor, I consider my work within the realms service industry myself, and I understand the need of effective and clear communication. I try to understand the needs of my patients, and try and offer them the different options at their disposal, not just what is available, but options that they may choose to seek elsewhere. I try to counsel them on the course of action of their disease, and recommend preventative measures that I can, not just give them a quick fix to the issue at hand and have them on their way. 

While  the customer is not always right, businesses and their staff need to understand the importance of that strong impact of fantastic customer service. This is something that they definitely need to invest in. Between that human element and a good product, it is a valuable foundation for lasting success.
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