You pick up the phone! I can reach a real person.

I was honestly surprised that my company, CD Baby, was such a runaway success. But I was even more surprised to find out why, said Derek Sivers. 


CD had lots of powerful, well-funded competitors, but after a few years, they were all but gone, and we dominated our niche of selling independent music. 150,000 musicians, 2 million music-buying customers, $139 million in revenue, $83 million paid directly to musicians. 


What was the secret to CD Baby’s success? Derek adds I never did any marketing. Everyone came by word-of-mouth. But why? 


For years, Derek asked hundreds of clients why they chose CD Baby instead of the alternatives.


Was it the pricing? The features? Nope.


The #1 answer, by far, almost every time someone raved about the company, was this: 


“You pick up the phone! I can reach a real person.”


Their customer service principle has always been, your call gets picked up in the first two rings. 


This was in the year 2014. They continue to do it even today. 


Why wouldn’t other organizations do this? 

Isn’t customer more important than the company? The easiest way by which you can improve customer loyalty and make your customer a brand ambassador is through better customer service. 


Exceptional customer service is a revenue generator. Customer support is the lynchpin in the entire customer journey. Proactive organizations leverage customer service as an opportunity to delight customers and engage them in new, exciting ways. 


Exceptional customer service stories

These are some exceptional customer service stories made available by live agents on call. 


Rackspace – a Rackspace employee, was in the middle of helping a customer through a marathon troubleshooting session when she heard the customer tell a colleague that she was hungry. The support professional put them on hold and ordered her customers a pizza. 

They were still on the phone when it arrived 30 minutes later. The customers were delighted, and the support professional knew that everyone would have fuel to power through until it was resolved. [Source:]

Trader Joe’s – Trader Joe’s has a cult following for a reason. Everyone has a favorite Trader Joe’s customer service story, and here is one of those. 


One day, an 89-year-old man was snowed in at his Pennsylvania home around the holidays. His daughter was concerned about getting him food and called a bunch of stores to see if anyone delivered. 


Trader Joe’s broke their own policy to deliver the gentleman items that fit his low-sodium diet – all free of charge. In fewer than 30 minutes, a Trader Joe’s team member was knocking on the door with a full delivery. [Source:]


Customer service, after all, is a philosophy. Derek Sivers says the things to keep in mind are: 


  1. You can afford to be generous
  2. The customer is more important than the company
  3. Customer service is a profit center
  4. Every interaction is your moment to shine 
  5. Lose every fight 
  6. Rebelliously right the wrongs of the world 


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