Category Archives: Customer Loyalty

Up all night..in the pursuit of customer service.

Never one to be a follower of sport – in fact I swiftly recycle any sport supplement that comes my way -something changed  this weekend. I write this whilst sipping on a free latte from Insomnia. I have always been a fan of this company, I like their style and their brand has a personality that fits kinda well with me. They treat their customers pretty good and this weekend they had a special treat for their ZAPPA tag loyalty card holders. Obviously being a promiscuous loyalty card fiend, I was in on the offer too.

The deal was this, whenever Ireland scored against Croatia, you get a free coffee. Genius ! So for the first and potentially last time, I watched the match from a partially selfish ‘what’s in it for me’ perspective. How joyful I was when we scored, I could taste the milky frothiness of my Monday latte already.

On a less positive note, I find the only weakness with Insomnia can be the staff. I had a think about as to why this might be. The only theory I could suggest is that they are true ‘insomniacs’ dedicated to their job and forego sleep in order to stay true to the brand name. It works as sometimes their enthusiasm and customer service is  lack lustre and I leave feeling a little nonchalant about their staff. Luckily their coffee pulls me away from my grumpy mumblings.

Lets not dwell on picky negativity though. We must applaud companies who run such great loyalty offers, more of it is needed ! Insomnia have done what not a lot of people could do, get me mildly interested in a sporting event. Now ‘Come On You Boys In Green, I am getting quite accustomed to these free Lattes and the suspense of the matches is becoming an enjoyable pastime…Perhaps I am the one in need of some sleep.

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SKY- Do they believe in better ?

I am partial to a bit of TV, like anyone else it keeps my mind active in less ‘busy’ times . SKY is one of those companies that you think occupy a rather untouchable corporate position. I do have to give them some credit. Their product is rather good, they are innovative and normally their service is what one would expect from an international company. However I have a bone to pick.

The bone that needs picking comes from a casual observation over a couple of weeks. As you know I am a full time lurker and professional observer. SKY has a sort of ‘selling station‘ in Stephen’s Green shopping centre. Now normally you would expect to see the staff handing out deals, engaging with customers and generally ‘selling’. This isn’t the case in said location. I am baffled as to what the staff are there for.

Each time I am lurking, they seem to be catching up with the sport, having a chat with other staff and looking a bit bemused by inquisitive customers who approach them. Is this the best job in the world ? They obviously don’t have sales targets to meet or maybe they are the outpost that SKY has forgotten about.

The pressing point is that this  important touch point that the customer encounters is letting the brand down. All the marketing efforts by SKY are futile if the customer doesn’t get the service on the front line. So the note of caution here is that at each point the customer engages with the brand, it should be a memorable experience, and not for the wrong reasons.

This highlights the importance of the ‘value chain’ theory and how a glitch in a companies processes can cause serious problems. Perhaps it’s time for SKY to believe in better service ?

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It really is the little things that count.

Camden street has become quite the melting pot of chic eateries and great bargains. As an aside, one of my favourite shops, The Camden Casket, is an absolute must visit for the savvy buyer, but more about that in a later post, I must stay on topic !

Back to NEON, or as they put it Asian street food, now I don’t know if the term ‘street food’ really does this justice,  it is way better than any urban street food I have ever tasted. The staff are most attentive even helping me choose dishes that would limit a chilli overdose.

Now to a little note or suggestion if you like, we visited at the rather unsociable hour of 5pm on a Monday thanks to a hectic day of project work. The lunch time deal was over at 4pm and whilst the only other two people in the place were content with this, I feel a little nudge in the way of customer loyalty would have been beneficial had it been offered. I do like a deal you know. Still €11.95 for noodles and a main dish is great.

And talk about saving the best till literally last, your meal comes with two ice cream cones that you can fill at your leisure for free. So ice cream cones in hand, a nod of thanks from the staff and a ray of sunshine breaking through, we left with definite promises of a return visit.

A little piece of paradise with delightful extras, a great combination. 

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Top Marks

A spur of the moment Thursday trip to M&S turned out to be quite the fruitful one. Initially lured in by their €12.50 dinner deal (which cannot be beaten for value) we were greeted by a selection of delightful treats being offered.

Yvonne was just as delightful as her samples, she amazed me with her enthusiasm and knowledge of all things Marks and Spencer. I left feeling knowledgeable  not just about the new range but a whole host of tips and tricks regarding all things cookery.

The most important point though is that Yvonne had bundles of passion without being pushy. She was absolutely brilliant at her job and could sell me a Spanish risotto in an instant, despite my abhorrent dislike for the mini rice dish. There needs to be more Yvonne’s out there !

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