21 Quotes that Illuminate the Value of Customer Conversations

Service is marketing

Who do we give our business to?

    Social media's biggest impact is the ability of customers to engage in relationships with businesses. Doing our homework includes asking our friends and family for a recommendation, but also reading ratings and reviews. Google search weighs in as well, from travel sites to technology.

    People in our networks and strangers have become believable sources thanks to blogs, and also product and service reviews. Smart businesses are part of the conversation, soliciting feedback beyond the Net Promoter Score (NPS). For example, by reaching out to customers who've made a purchase with questions others customers have asked to get a different perspective colored by direct experience.

    A focus on customers is a good bet in business. It's not a contemporary or modern quest, we've been talking about service excellence for a long time. Here are 21 quotes that illustrate how relevant customer conversations can help organizations drive value in the networked age.

With a fun surprise at the end.



“The way to gain a good reputation, is to endeavor to be what you desire to appear.” ~ Socrates


“If you make customers unhappy in the physical world, they might each tell 6 friends. If you make customers unhappy on the Internet, they can each tell 6,000 friends.”  ~ Jeff Bezos


“Do what you do so well that they will want to see it again and bring their friends.” ~ Walt Disney


“The purpose of a business is to create a customer who creates customers.” ~ Shiv Singh


“Quality in a service or product is not what you put into it. It is what the client or customer gets out of it.” ~ Peter Drucker


“Statistics suggest that when customers complain, business owners and managers ought to get excited about it. The complaining customer represents a huge opportunity for more business.” ~ Zig Ziglar


“Kind words can be short and easy to speak, but their echos are truly endless.” ~ Mother Teresa


“In business you get what you want by giving others what they want.” ~ Alice Macdougall


“There are no traffic jams along the extra mile.” ~ Roger Staubach


“Good leaders must first become good servants.” ~ Robert Greenleaf


“We see our customers as invited guests to a party, and we are the hosts. It's our job every day to make every important aspect of the customer experience a little bit better.” ~ Jeff Bezos


“Always do right. This will gratify some people and astonish the rest.” ~ Mark Twain


“Profit in business comes from repeat customers, customers that boast about your project or service, and that bring friends with them.” ~ W. Edwards Deming


“Well done is better than well said.” ~ Benjamin Franklin


“Quality is remembered long after the price is forgotten.” ~ Gucci Family Slogan


“Revolve your world around the customer and more customers will revolve around you.” ~ Heather Williams


“We don’t want to push our ideas on to customers, we simply want to make what they want.” ~ Laura Ashley


“Customers perceive service in their own unique, idiosyncratic, emotional, irrational, end-of-the-day, and totally human terms. Perception is all there is!” ~ Tom Peters


“Make your product easier to buy than your competition, or you will find your customers buying from them, not you.” ~ Mark Cuban


“For us, our most important stakeholder is not our stockholders, it is our customers. We’re in business to serve the needs and desires of our core customer base.” ~ John Mackey


“To do is to be.” ~ Descartes; “To be is to do.” ~ Voltaire; “Do be do be do.” ~ Sinatra


0 responses to “21 Quotes that Illuminate the Value of Customer Conversations”

  1. This is a very timely piece given my current state of mind. My wife had a few hundred dollars stolen from her (more than likely by resort staff) right at the end of our honeymoon. We had met the resort GM in passing, and he was nice enough to us, so we’ve been trying to work through their channels without flying off the handle (posting irate tweets, ranting reviews, whatever else people might do), but it took them over a week just to send us an incident report form that is supposedly required before they take action. And, every time (except one) that they promised they would call back, email something, look into “it,” etc, they have not followed through. To add to this, the email responses we have gotten have been unnecessarily passive aggressive: “We will look into the supposed incident,” “I will find out what actually happened,” etc, etc, etc. Needless to say, I’m not too happy about their customer service and have decided that having to wait 10 days and still seeing no action or definitive response is too long, and now, I’m going to start telling those 6,000 friends.
    It’s sad that businesses motivate otherwise nice – at least I think I am 😉 – and level-headed people to broadcast their negative feeling about them, when they could simply respond more quickly, be a little nicer, and resolve issues promptly.

  2. Good stuff (as usual). 🙂
    I just agreed to pay someone else to work on one of our cars. This guy embodies the concepts mentioned above. For some, this doesn’t even make sense yet, but I am a gearhead. I haven’t taken my vehicles to a mechanic in closer to eight years, now. I called this guy because he’s taken excellent care of my in-laws (sparing me the labor in the Arizona heat). We chatted about the symptoms we’re having (overheating) and he pulled up his database to get a picture of what I’m talking about to help me out.
    He gladly gave me the information I needed to do the job myself tonight after work. Instead, I’ll be having the truck towed to his shop this afternoon so they can do it.
    That’s how it should be done.

  3. @Eric – it makes you want to retaliate, doesn’t it? It’s very natural, as you will see in my post for Wednesday. I’m so sorry that happened to you two, especially after such a momentous event in your lives. Maybe put the question to Chris Elliott? http://www.elliott.org/ I’ve been reading his column for months before thinking of seeing if he was online.
    @Brian – It is so good to have you back in your rare form here. And I know you know I’m sincere when I say you add tremendous value to these posts with your stories. One day, I’d love to hear how the job is going. Or maybe Gearbox magazine is your life work at the moment. This blog was to me for such a long time. That’s why I continue to share so much even as I work for a social media agency. That’s how it should be done.
    @Shannon – was that a hint that you do that by leaving links on other blogs? Or was there a more helpful way to make a first impression?

  4. It also pays to actually like and be interested in people.
    In my experience, a little enthusiasm and genuine curiosity for the other provides you with what you need to know to be helpful.

  5. Great post Valeria. I have thought for a while that if I ran a PR firm and I was pitching a piece of new busuiness, I’d reqest that not only communications and marketing were at the table, but also support.
    Once upon a time communications (general message to broad audience) and support (specific message to narrow audience) were opposite ends of a string. Social media has bent that string into the shape of a loop.
    Your fan,

  6. @Valeria – Anytime. Mid-October will mark a full year of Gearbox (and a full year in the new job, which has been affecting some of the posts on my personal site). I’ve got in gear and come up with some kind of anniversary celebration to go with a sort of annual report.
    Now, how do report site metrics as being beneficial to the community? Perhaps I should be thinking about some new metrics!
    Glad to be back and commenting from the fringe.

  7. @Peter – seems like such a basic thing, doesn’t it? Being interested in people.
    @Joe – good comparison, one of those I wish I had thought of.
    @Brian – one full year, amazing! You must be so proud of the community. There are tangible benefits, like people doing business with each other, finding leads, forming projects, etc. and intangible, like people getting support, being inspired, learning more, which then in turn can produce tangible results. Maybe a combination of stories and numbers?

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