Whenever I see a company offering different levels of customer service based on the size of spend, I feel incredibly frustrated.
How are businesses getting away with it? If you are a customer, you are a customer, end of. You have paid your money and the service should come wrapped around that purchase, regardless how much you spend each year or how many licences you hold. Platinum, silver or straw packages? No thank you.
At BigChange – and in all of my previous companies – I have always treated every single one of my customers with the same attention and devotion. Here’s why:
Small becomes big
If there’s one thing I’ve learned over half a century in business, it’s that if you support companies while they are small, they will remember you when they get big. If you treat a customer with 10 employees as though they don’t matter, as soon as they can take their business elsewhere, they will. Instead, we have seen many smaller companies – some micro businesses – flourish in partnership with BigChange, doubling or even tripling in size. Their success is our success and we can’t do enough to help them.
It makes you smarter
Yes, you may have to invest more time and money into your customer service function but you will also be more innovative and effective. At BigChange, we have created a whole online knowledge bank full of useful guides and videos for our customers of all sizes, so that they know just where they can get an easy solution. We also realised that many of our customers often don’t have time to play with our technology and really experience the full functionality. So, we created the BigChange University, where we take them through a different feature each session. Customers don’t have to try and figure anything out in the evenings or weekends. Instead, they have a whole hour blocked out in their diary dedicated to getting to grips with the platform. It’s been incredibly successful, with thousands of attendees. And while it took forethought and planning to get the university up and running, it’s also an invaluable way to get insight from our customers and inform future product development.
Innovation in all its forms
And on that point about innovation, smaller companies often really push boundaries when it comes to finding new and better ways of working. Keeping our ties with the ‘S’ end of SME means we are constantly seeing new trends, new industry needs, and new solutions. Working in partnership with smaller companies means we can get in at the ground floor, creating the features and products they need to tackle these challenges as they grow. We also learn so much from our enterprise clients, especially how to roll out efficiencies at scale. Working with businesses at both ends of the spectrum means that we can cherrypick best-practice across the whole ecosystem and apply it to our technology.
It’s the right thing to do
We live in an age where it is no longer acceptable to behave unethically in business. It has been huge gratifying to see this shift, and to know that our values and commitment to customer service make us one of the good guys. Over the course of my career, I have kept in touch with many happy customers from both big companies and small – only to have them join my businesses or become customers again in new roles or ventures. In business, as in life, you get out what you put in. By treating people fairly, with respect, and always giving your all to help them when they need you, you create a social currency that is absolutely priceless.