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Customer Service 101

Being professional is much easier said than done, and there are a lot of us who think we “have it”, but we really don’t. Although I do focus on graphic design, I have a lot of experience in customer service, and I always have something to say that could improve habits that you currently have.

Let’s break this down to 4 categories

1. Your Approach

2. Your Social Media

3. Solving Issues

4. Email Etiquette


Your Approach

  • When talking about “approach”, I am speaking on the first impression that you give potential clients, whether in person or online.

  • · A lot of business owners can get so worked up in the fact that they are getting big out here that they begin to treat clients like they are doing THEM a favor. Always remember, without your clients you have NO business. You should approach clients like they are doing YOU a favor. We as consumers feel when we are not being appreciated and when we are being rushed. This means, smile, thank them and make them feel like you are very grateful for their service.

  • · In person, you should be giving clients your full-undivided attention and enthusiasm. Let me give an example of how I felt treated unappreciated when purchasing an item from a vendor at an event. I walked up to the table smiling as I always do. Both sellers were on their phones. As I got closer one just looked up. I said “Hello!” Then they both spoke [Error #1 in my book! Why am I speaking to you first?] I saw no smiles on neither of the girls faces [Error #2. Not enthused or friendly]. I was not told about the products or the costs. [Error #3, if someone is at your table. TELL THEM ABOUT THE PRODUCTS!] So I asked, “What’s in this drink? How much is it?” One girl answered me. I asked did they take cash app, she handed me her phone to get the cash app tag. I typed it in my phone and sent the money. I waited a couple of beats…… “Did you get the money?” I asked, she said yes…I said thank you, got my drink and walked away. [Error #4, as a fellow business owner, I expected a “thank you”!] This wasn’t the worst scenario, but it definitely reminded me of how many people lack good customer service skills and probably see no problem with it because they were not straight up “Rude.” Your client should never be more enthused than you are.

  • · Email… Yikes. There are so many things that can be said about email approaches. You definitely should be greeting them and thanking them for considering you. Here is an example of how not to approach potential clients who email you. Again, no this is not the worst scenario, but it definitely shows how simple it can be to turn someone off as it definitely turned me off from her services, no matter how good she was at makeup.

Some may think I am extra for giving her my advice, but I really do think more people will benefit from hearing constructive criticism rather than having people pass them up without them knowing why. In the “Email Etiquette” section, I will touch more on good formatting of your emails and how to present yourself as a business and not just a person who sells things.


Social Media

  • Social media kind of tags along with the approach in some ways. Your social media for your business should definitely represent you professionally, not you personally. With that being said, make sure to have a separate page for business and personal posts. Some people post their personal posts on business and it may work for them for now. But if you want to be broadened to a larger crowd, you will want to adjust for sure. Not only do incomers not care to see your selfies all the time, they really do not want to see your personal feelings towards whatever subject is poppin’ right now. If I am coming to your page to see your portfolio, I do not want to see you arguing with people about if R. Kelly was right or not. No matter what you really feel about it and how many people agree with you, you will turn away many people with your personal opinions and it just is not professional at all to mix these posts with your business.

  • Your personal page. Should you have to watch what you say? In MY opinion, your personal page is where you can express freedom and ideas. My pages are all public, and I do not try to be a conservative on those sources at all, but one thing that I try not to do is complain, vent or go off about a client. I have seen it umpteenth times in my life, and it really leaves a bad taste in people’s mouths. The timeline does not need to see how frustrated you are at people complaining about your prices, or about how tired you are of people coming late, or how you hate how people inquire about services but don’t come through. It is tacky and unprofessional to even be worrying publicly about those things. People are going to complain about your prices sometimes, oh well! People may be late sometimes, so enforce a LATE FEE. People will continually inquire but not follow through, that is PERFECTLY FINE! That is why they are “Inquiring”, people can not always afford you and some like to weigh all of their options. Stop taking things personally, because most of these things that you vent about happen to every business owner.

  • Please do not let your social media appear as hostile, this is also something that has drawn me far away from certain businesses. Your bio, highlights, posts and comments should not ever seem to be made out of spite or frustration. Again, tacky and unprofessional. I literally have seen the following things listed in various people’s bio’s, highlights and posts and I stepped right off of their page.

o “DO NOT DM ME FOR PRICES, I WILL NOT RESPOND” First of all why are you yelling? If you really do not want people to DM you for inquiries, a simple “Please email for inquiries. No DMs” is fine

o “No shows will be BLOCKED, Period!” It’s understood, but this is not a welcoming statement that needs to be in your bio, highlights or posts.

o “If you are not deposit ready, do not contact me!” I see this all too much, and it really is extremely rude. People should have the right to contact you without being ready at that moment to book you.

o “I DO NOT INSTALL OLD HAIR!!!” Why you yelling? Let people know this in a confirmation text/email if it is not on your website, please.

o “Don’t request someone else’s work to me” If you run into these situations and you really are one of those ones who hate when people ask you to do something that another person in your field did, you should deal with them on case-by-case basis. Posting something like this is a turn off.

  • While some things that you put in your bio are your true policies, and you want people to know these things before booking, there are 1. Nicer ways for things to be said and 2. Ways to go about these policies, such as contracts or confirmation texts/emails (Which I highly recommend) just make sure you are not appearing as hostile. Yes, most of our rules are made due to frustrating clients, but the world does not need to know or feel that.


Solving Issues

This is something that most people don’t know how to handle because they either don’t have business issues or complaints often, they will not tolerate any crazy talk and will let you know, or because they refuse to ever admit fault. Solving issues in your business correctly will really make it worth YOUR while in the long run.

  • · Why do issues arise in business? Issues come up because the customer is not happy for some reason. As the owner or worker, you must figure out why they are not happy and you need to see what you can do to alleviate the problem. To do this, you must first and most importantly LISTEN. If you do not fully understand their complaint, ask questions to get down to the bottom of it. Don’t jump into solving something that someone did not fully explain or that you don’t understand.

  • · After you know what the issue stemmed from, recognize who is responsible. Let’s say that the customer is responsible for the issue. There are so many examples that I could give, but usually when the customer is “responsible”, it is because of a lack in understanding of a policy that you have. If your policy is in a contract or written form that they were sent, GREAT! If not, you may want to help compensate them in