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There is no doubt that excellent customer service is essential to the contact center's success. So, it’s not surprising that there is such demand for customer service books in 2022.

Agents, supervisors, and other players in the contact center industry understand the importance of delivering an unbeatable customer experience and realize that, through ongoing research and learning, you can improve your customer service skills and learn how to build long-lasting client relationships.

In this article, we’ll zoom in on why it’s so important to get the customer service right and recommend seven essential customer service books that offer advice and techniques that, when implemented, could make a real difference in your organization.

What is Customer Service? Why is it Important in Call Centers?

Customer service is the care and support your company offers to your customers and prospects, be it to resolve an issue, assist with onboarding, or answer any questions they might have. It is sometimes referred to as “the first line of defense,” and rightfully so. Agents have more contact with customers than anyone else in the company, and they’re almost always the first to hear about any issues or complaints. Given the nature of this agent-customer relationship, customer support can be what makes or breaks customer experience and allows your organization to stand out from the crowd. 

According to recent research, more than 80% of customers believe good customer service to be the most important factor — outside of price and product — in their decision to buy. At the same time, 65% of customers admit switching to a different brand after a poor customer success interaction, showing just how important it is for businesses to prioritize excellent customer service.

Resources for Improving Customer Service

There is a wealth of resources available online for agents who want to hone their customer service skills. Interactive tools, mobile apps, video tutorials — the list is endless. However, despite all the innovation and convenience of technology and digital resources, books have remained popular — and there’s a reason for that. Nothing can compare to the in-depth learning experience you get from settling down with a good book. While the ideal approach involves a mixture of all the tools available, books can lay a solid foundation for your learning process and offer unparalleled insights into a customer’s mind and the secrets of exceptional customer success teams.

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Our 7 Favorite Customer Service Books

While there are plenty of noteworthy books aimed at improving customer service out there, we compiled a list of our absolute favorites that offer helpful pieces of advice, practical tips, and hard-earned, experience-driven insights that can’t be found elsewhere. Here are seven of the best customer service books in 2022.

#1. Chief Customer Officer 2.0 by Jeanne Bliss

Following on from the original Chief Customer Officer, published in 2006, Jeanne Bliss returns with an updated look at how to transform customer experience for both B2C and B2B companies. The book details Bliss’s Five-Competency Model, an approach she uses to coach the C-Suite, CCOs, and VPs of Customer Experience around the world. Including more than 40 case studies of CCOs embedding these five competencies within their organizations, Chief Customer Officer 2.0 gives readers a proven framework for building a customer-driven growth engine, with Bliss bringing together all of her knowledge and insights from over 30 years of experience in CCO roles.

#2. Delivering Happiness: A Path to Profits, Passion, and Purpose by Tony Hsieh

Under the guidance of Tony Hsieh, Zappos went from merchandise sales of $1.6 million in 2000 to over $1 billion in 2008. How did Zappos see such staggering growth in just eight years? The answer is a relentless focus on company culture and customer service. Delivering Happiness tells the story of this remarkable growth journey and how Hsieh’s vision of customer service as a company-wide responsibility, not a departmental one, revolutionized Zappos. Perhaps the most enlightening aspect of this story is the idea that focusing on the happiness of those around you can go a long way toward improving your own performance and happiness.

#3. Customer Loyalty: How to Earn It, How to Keep It by Jill Griffin

Jill Griffin's customer service classic is a practical guide filled with actionable tips and real-world advice on cultivating loyalty among your customers. Using concrete examples, Griffin explores the significance of customer loyalty, how you can earn it, and how you can ensure that customers remain loyal long-term. The crux of Griffin’s argument is that customer satisfaction is the key to customer loyalty. If you can keep your customers consistently happy, you can keep them loyal. Each chapter examines customer loyalty from a different angle, providing the reader with steps to follow, tools to use, and a summary of key points to refer back to.

#4. Be Our Guest by The Disney Institute and Theodore Kinni

Disney is one of the most recognizable, beloved brands in history. Behind the magic created on screen, customer service has played a huge role in establishing the Disney brand. In Be Our Guest, Theodore Kinni explores the role of customer service in building the Disney empire over the decades. Essentially, Kinni suggests that simply satisfying customers isn’t enough; you have to exceed expectations to truly leave a mark and establish a long-lasting relationship with the customer. Kinni looks at the practices and procedures that enable Disney to continuously exceed customer expectations and deliver exceptional service.

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#5. The Effortless Experience by Matthew Dixon, Nick Toman, and Rick DeLisi

The Effortless Experience is a bold entry into the customer service canon that challenges commonly-held beliefs about customer loyalty and the best ways to cultivate it. While it’s long been argued that customer loyalty is driven by delivering exceptional, above-and-beyond service, the authors of this book contend that conventional wisdom on the matter is misguided (sorry, Be Our Guest). Dixon, Toman, and DeLisi instead argue that it all boils down to the basics. If you can just solve your customer’s problem, they will be happy. The Effortless Experience provides tools and templates to put this advice into action for better service, lower costs, and increased customer loyalty.

#6. The Amazement Revolution: Seven Customer Service Strategies to Create an Amazing Customer (and Employee) Experience by Shep Hyken

After the success of The Cult of the Customer, Shep Hyken returns with seven strategies to establish loyalty not only among customers but employees too. Hyken, like many, believes that customer service can be an important differentiator in a competitive market. By including everyone in the customer service process — not just the CS department — you can embed a customer-focused philosophy throughout your organization. With over one hundred examples from fifty role-model companies supporting the seven key strategies, The Amazement Revolution is beneficial for any business with a customer service component, regardless of size or sector.

#7. Hug Your Haters: How to Embrace Complaints and Keep Your Customers by Jay Baer

Complaints are an unavoidable reality for any business. Whether you’re running a lemonade stand or a Fortune 500 company, you’re going to face an unhappy customer at some point. While complaints have always been part and parcel of running a business, the advent of smartphones and social media has created an environment where customers can vent their frustrations on countless channels at any time. With this in mind, Jay Baer has put together a collection of data-driven strategies to deal with customer complaints by meeting them head-on. Hug Your Haters shows that when customers give you lemons, you can make lemonade.

Final Thoughts

Customer service has always been a key component of any successful business; in 2022, this remains as true as ever. Whether you’re in a leadership role or interact with customers on a regular basis, keeping your customer service skills sharp goes a long way toward driving growth and bumping up the bottom line. There are numerous tools available for anyone who wants to up their customer service game, but it’s hard to beat a book for properly-researched, in-depth advice that is based on hard-earned experience. With so many available books on the subject, it can be hard to know where to start. We did the hard work for you and put together a list of arguably the best books that can help elevate your customer service in 2022. 


If you want to learn how Scorebuddy tools can be implemented to enhance customer experience, get in touch today and request a demo.

 

 

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