What Do I Know, I'm Just A Customer

Which is better, ice cream or frozen  yogurt?
On my way  back from my workout, I stopped at the local convenience store for a quart of milk.
I kept thinking, I would love a  fat yogurt frozen cone.
I proceeded to asked the clerk if they had any low-fat  frozen yogurt. That seems like a logical question doesn’t it? I figured there were no calories listed because they just hadn’t put them up. Boy was I wrong.
Calorie counts are on everything; especially ice cream and frozen yogurt. Why not in our “local” convenience store; the once that’s been here forever.
“Ice cream without fat doesn’t taste like ice cream,” she said. Suddenly, everyone is now looking at me. Did I say something wrong?
Now I’m beginning to feel defensive.
I sweetly replied, “I didn’t ask about the taste, I just asked about the fat.” Again she repeated if they take  the fat out of their ice cream  it won’t meet their taste standards.
Now I’m beginning to think she want’s me to stop asking questions–not me. Aren’t I the customer? When did we start talking about ice cream?
Now I’m really not happy.  I continue about how Ben and Jerry’s has a few flavors of frozen yogurt that are low fat and they taste great. She repeats that Ben and Jerry’s ice cream doesn’t meet their standards.
Do I have to defend my neighborhood Ben and Jerry’s? The  great guys who give away ice cream on New Year’s Eve?  The best known premium ice cream brand? I love them!
Maybe defending your brand used to work Maybe trashing your competitor used to work. It doesn’t work anymore. Check out this customer service blog: Why Old Ways Don’t Work Anymore.
I don’t remember asking about ice cream, it was a frozen yogurt discussion. I guess she’s never been to Ben and Jerry’s either. I am in deep trouble.
“Well, I replied, I came in for a quart of skim milk and don’t eat ice cream anyway. ”
Her final parting words: “When you want some really great ice cream stop in!”
I guess I’m just not the customer. I was just trying to help the lady make a sale.
A word of advice to businesses:
The customer isn’t  your enemy; I want you to succeed or I wouldn’t be in your shop.(No matter what you think.)
Please don’t trash your customer’s favorite brands; you may decide to carry it.)
Ask for feedback; without it you’ll never grow.
Check on your competition; find out what they’re doing. Maybe what they’re doing gives them a competitive advantage?
Remember great customer service doesn’t mean the customer is always right. I means if you want to keep  your customer you will make them right. Would it have been bad if she’d said, “I love Ben and Jerry’s too?”
Case closed.
Lisbeth Calandrino helps businesses build loyal relationships with their customers through customer service training.  Pick up a copy of her book, “Red Hot Customer Service”
You can reach Lisbeth at [email protected]

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