A few posts ago I talked about my experience with TiVo Customer Service. While I didn’t receive bad service per se, I felt like the reps could have communicated better. I made the argument that it should be just as easy to leave a company as it is to engage with a company, even though my intention is to remain a TiVo fan.

I worked for DataStorm Technologies in the early 90s. I pointed out to another developer that we were leaving files behind in our installations. My opinion was that, if the customer is uninstalling our application, there should be no trace of it left after uninstall except for the customer’s data. He replied with, “screw ‘em. They’re leaving us. Why do we care if we left anything behind?” Wow. Surely there is a lot of arrogance in that statement.

Think about this…how often do you change your services, devices, or whatever?  Personally, I change things up about once every two or three years. If I don’t change things up, I at least think about it. So, every two or three years there is an opportunity for you (as a vendor or business) to sell me something. (That opportunity actually exists all the time, because there are many of these two or three year periods overlapping.) Likewise, you have the opportunity to win back my business every two or three years as well.

Customer service on exit is just as important as customer service during engagement because, every so often, you have another chance to gain back my loyalty. If you screw that up on exit, your chances are close to zero. In addition, you need to consider all of the potential or existing customers that are part of or affected by my social organizations.

“Melissa” at TiVo gave me a call last week and set up some time to talk about my experience. We talked yesterday and she gave me a few moments to pontificate about my thoughts on the importance of a complete customer experience. She had listened to my customer support calls and agreed that I had made it clear that I intended to remain a TiVo customer even though suddenLink is handling my subscription. She said that suddenLink is a very important partner for them and, of course, they want to do everything they can to support TiVo / suddenLink customers. 

“Melissa” also said that they had turned this experience into a training opportunity for the reps involved. I hope that is true, because that “programmer arrogance” that I mentioned above (which was somewhat pervasive back then) may be part of the reason why that company is no longer around.

Good job “Melissa”!  And, like I said, I am still a TiVo fan. In fact, we love our new TiVo and many of the great new features.

In addition, if you’re one of the two people that read these posts, please remember that these are just opinions. Your experiences may be, and likely will be, completely unique to you.