Clint Powell: Customer Service

Monday, May 12, 2014 - by Clint Powell
Clint Powell
Clint Powell

Sometimes you are marketing your business and don’t even realize it. Then there are times your employees ARE your marketing team and you may not even be around. It’s true! Recently I was at the pharmacy getting a prescription filled and I saw it firsthand. The pharmacist-tech was talking with folks in line; she was telling people how long the wait was – what line they should be in – and setting expectations. Very efficient, but not very effective. 

She was apparently frustrated that she was busy ‘all of a sudden’. Her exact words were ‘Wow…so everyone just decided to come all at once apparently. Great!’ (Insert grumpy face and irritated tone).  Hmmm…I am no marketing expert…wait yes I am…and that is horrible marketing. She may not have realized it or cared, but horrible marketing it was. She then proceeded to talk to individuals like they were a real inconvenience. I was in line and started seeing the looks from the other folks around me, the eye rolls and then I started hearing the under the breath comments of the people in line. I was watching the definition of poor customer marketing right before my eyes.

If you talk to 10 business owners and ask them how is their customer service …most, if not all, would say ‘good’. Ask that same group how important customer service is to the growth of their business and most, if not all, would say ‘very important’.

Guess what? Most businesses say that, but very few have training, systems or monitoring processes in place. They tell a new hire WHAT they want, but not HOW to get there. If you tell someone to go to Bozeman, Montana….but without specific directions then you can’t get upset if they go a different direction than you would have liked. ‘Good’ customer service is defined differently by different people; don’t forget…it’s your company. Be sure the people who wear your brand know how YOU define “good customer service”…… give them the destination, and the directions. You are setting them up for success.  Remember, you and your employees are marketing even when you may not realize it. From simply responding to a question about where the widgets are located to addressing a customer complaint. People are watching – they are listening. Your marketing should give one simple, clear message…. ‘We want your business.’ The world is very competitive…one bad experience can take a client from a brand ambassador to a brand jumper.

Take your customer service seriously, because you are marketing even if you don’t realize it.

* * *

Clint Powell is owner of Connect Marketing, a full service advertising agency in Chattanooga. He is a graduate of Carson-Newman College. He has spent years in radio advertising sales and management, built a billboard company and works on a contract basis with other ad agencies writing ad copy and helping formulate strategies. Clint has worked with hundreds of local and regional companies over the years and helped them develop advertising campaigns. He frequently leads marketing seminars and meetings for businesses and network groups. He believes that life is all about connections and spends his time connecting businesses and business owners to solutions. He sits on the board of Y-Cap (YMCA Community Action Program) and helps with several other non-profits. Clint currently resides in East Ridge with his wife and three children.

To get in touch with Clint and his team at Connect Marketing call 423 505-1014 or email

Scam Phone Calls Continue; IRS Identifies Five Easy Ways To Spot Suspicious Calls

The Internal Revenue Service issued a consumer alert today providing taxpayers with additional tips to protect themselves from telephone scam artists calling and pretending to be with the IRS.   These callers may demand money or may say you have a refund due and try to trick you into sharing private information. These con artists can sound convincing when they call. They ... (click for more)

CBL & Associates Properties To Pay Common And Preferred Stock Dividends

CBL & Associates Properties, Inc. Thursday announced that its Board of Directors has declared a quarterly cash dividend for the company’s Common Stock of $0.245 per share for the quarter ending Sept. 30. The dividend is payable on Oct. 15 to shareholders of record as of Sept. 30. The Board also declared a quarterly cash dividend of $0.4609375 per depositary share for the ... (click for more)

Plan Revived For 5-Story Boutique Hotel Next To The Walnut Street Bridge

Plans have been revived for a five-story boutique hotel next to the Walnut Street Bridge. Vision Hospitality Group said the yet-to-be named hotel will provide 90 rooms featuring high-end amenities and exemplary service in the city's art district. Plans for a similar hotel were announced in 2012, but the proposal was later withdrawn. The hotel is slated for 102 Walnut ... (click for more)

Grand Jury Says County Needs To Start "Immediately" On Funding A New County Jail

Members of the Hamilton County Grand Jury said in a final report that the county needs to start "immediately" on funding a replacement for the Hamilton County Jail. The report, read by Foreman Robert Smith, says, "The Jail is near and/or over capacity and understaffed!  Hard-working corrections officers are in constant danger.  Being responsible for 80-100 inmates per ... (click for more)

Better Plan For Walnut Street Hotel

Mitch Patel and his Vision Hospitality Group have unveiled a revised plan for a hotel on Walnut Street. It is much better than the one proposed two years ago. By having no curb cuts on Walnut Street, it makes that special block near the bridge more inviting and safer for pedestrians. Deliveries would be off Riverfront Parkway and hotel access (valet parking) would be off Aquarium ... (click for more)

Thanks For Making The Southern Brewers Festival A Success

Now that the dust has settled I'd like to thank Chattanooga for supporting the Southern Brewers Festival and making it yet another very successful event.    For those who do not know - the SBF benefits the Chattanooga chapter of Kids on the Block and the Chattanooga Community Kitchen.  As a partner helping the SBF with volunteers, sponsorships and the overall production ... (click for more)