Case Study: Are You Giving Your Customers a Reason to Talk About You?

I was never a coffee drinker until I met my now fiancé, Amy.coffee cup social media

She can’t start her day without a cup (or two) of dark roast, and over the last three years I’ve slowly become a coffee drinker myself.

My day can start just fine without it, though.  Rather, I simply enjoy the experience of a great cup of coffee (especially bulletproof coffee but that’s a whole other topic for another day).

So, when we go back to my hometown of Hampton, NH a couple of times a year to visit my family, we hit up this drive-through coffee shop called Jumpin’ Jacks Java.

Yes, there’s a Dunkin’ Donuts in town but we like Jacks coffee way better.

I know, I know, there’s a passionate army of you Dunkin’ Donuts coffee lovers out there, but I’m telling you, the “triple J” rocks.

But the coffee isn’t the point of this article.

It’s the guys who run Jumpin’ Jacks and more importantly, Joe.

Give Your Customers a Reason to Talk About You

Amy and I have gotten to know Joe since we stop by so frequently when we’re in town. 

Every time we’ve been there he greets us with a cheery hello and a smile on his face, no matter the time of day or how horrible the weather is.

He often offers us a free muffin or bagel to go with our coffee and not just at the end of the day when he wants to get rid of them.  He’ll do this at 7am or 8am in the morning during his busiest time of the day.

Just last weekend we drove through with my young nephews in the car.  We were kind of in a hurry so we weren’t able to chat a whole lot with Joe but he smiled at them, waved and said hello.

The next day we went back through (without my nephews) and Joe apologized for not offering them a free donut or muffin the day before.  He asked us if we’d be seeing them anytime soon because he wanted to make up for it.

We graciously thanked him but said it was completely unnecessary.  He insisted, though, telling us to be sure and stop by before seeing them again so he can send along a donut and muffin.

The next morning, on our way to see my nephews, we drove up for our coffee and sure enough Joe had a whole box of donuts and muffins waiting for us.  Not just one or two, a whole box. 

I told him I couldn’t accept it for free but I was happily going to pay for it.  He wouldn’t have any of it, though.  He insisted and told me how much he appreciates our business when we’re in town.

He handed us our coffees (which, yes, we paid for) smiled and wished us a good day.

My nephews, needless to say, love Joe now too.

Taking Social Media Customer Service to the Next Level

Two days later I stopped by in the early afternoon for a second cup of the day.

As I was waiting for Joe to bring over the dark roast I noticed a box of dog bones on the counter inside the window.

Why is there a box of dog bones in a drive-through coffee shop, I thought to myself?

Then it came to me.  I bet Joe has them for his customers who come by with dogs in the car!

When he brought the coffee to the window I asked him about it. 

Sure enough, he smiled and said “yep, I have a lot of regulars who come through who often have their dogs in the car.  So, I have a treat ready for them.  And, I don’t leave out the cats” as he showed me a can of cat treats.

Wow, talk about going above and beyond.

I shook my head in amazement and told him that he “gets” customer service.  He knows how to build a business of raving fans.  Customers that are going to keep coming back and tell all their friends where to get coffee in town.

Joe just smiled and said “thanks, I appreciate you noticing that and for your business.”

How Are YOU Being Remarkable in Your Business?

Seth Godin talks a lot about it and he even wrote a book about it.

In my podcast interview with Frank Eliason, Citi’s Director of Global Social Media, he talked about it too.

Being remarkable.

In this day of saturated markets and fierce competition, you have to stand out from the crowd.  You have to be that “purple cow” that Seth talks about.

One way to do that is to be remarkable in your business, in how you treat your customers.

After all, people generally don’t take to social media to talk about businesses unless they have a bad experience.  Right?

Think about it.  If you walk into a place, order a coffee, you get it and then walk out.  You’re happy because you got your coffee but there wasn’t anything special about your experience.

You aren’t going to tell anyone about it because it was just a normal experience.

Frank, in my chat with him on the podcast, put it really well: “Companies have to find how to be remarkable. How often are you willing to make a remark about companies?  Probably not as often as the company would like to think and that’s because everything they do is relatively average.  They don’t find or give you a reason to want to go wow, this just happened with this company.”

Joe at Jumpin’ Jacks Java is being remarkable.  He has my business whenever I’m in town and I’m the first to tell anyone who will listen about how great they are.

Speaking of which, if you ever find yourself in Hampton, NH and want a great coffee, he’s located on Route 1, a bright red neon “open” sign out front. 

So, now the question is, are you delighting your customers and giving them a reason to talk about you?  When it comes to people talking about businesses in social media, it doesn’t always have to be negative.

How are YOU being remarkable?

 

 

7 Responses to Case Study: Are You Giving Your Customers a Reason to Talk About You?

  1. What a great example of customer service at it’s finest. I learned a lot about customer service when I worked in many restaurants and bars over the years. I would do things like run out to the grocery store a few doors down to pick up eggs, when a customer requested them after breakfast. Things like that.

    If you go above a beyond you will leave a great impression. Customers (like you) will return time and time again. Treat people well offline and online and you’ll be in great shape too.

    Now off to grab a coffee. I wish Joe was nearby, I would pay him a visit based on this review. Thanks Rick.

    • You’re exactly right, Dave. Thanks for sharing your experiences. So many businesses these days are “average” and they wonder why nobody talks about them (in a good light) in social media. It’s rather simple, give people a reason to talk well about you. Enjoy your coffee. I’ll be visiting Joe again this afternoon. 🙂 — Rick

  2. Great article. I think the best part is that it is thought provoking. I just shared it with my social customer care team to get them thinking this morning. – Frankie

  3. Steve says:

    Thanks, Rick. Great post and so true. It is a good time of year in my industry to revisit customer service so you’ve helped me with this week’s blog topic (and I’ll be sure to give you a nod).

    Keep up the good work!

    • Thanks a lot, Steve. Appreciate the kind words. Glad you got a lot out of the article. It’s the little things that separate the good businesses from the great ones and too many businesses miss the boat on this stuff. Have a great week! — Rick

  4. What I admire most about Joe, is that going above and beyond was his first thought, not something left as a minor detail.

    When businesses try to tack these things on, you can feel it.

    Great reminder for putting the customer first and always exceeding expectations.

Leave a reply