Everyone has a customer service horror story.

You know the kinds I'm talking about. Whether it was the story of a missed flight, downed WiFi, or an impossible quest to speak to a person -- not a robot -- on the phone, you or your friend almost certainly have a nightmare to tell.

And that's because it's scientifically easier for us to recall negative memories than it is to recall positive ones -- which is probably why customers typically tell twice as many of their family and friends about negative experiences as they do positive ones.

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But we know better than anyone that for every negative customer service experience, there are many more stories of customer-centric companies, customer-first policies, and customer service reps who go the extra mile to solve problems for customers. So in the interest of positivity -- and yes, a little bit of advocacy for our profession -- we'll keep updating this blog post with some positive stories of our own, to share with our family and friends.

(That's you, dear readers.)

Keep reading to read good customer service stories from real customers -- those of us, here at HubSpot.

Good Customer Service Stories You Need to Read

1. Netflix's Unique Approach to Increasing its Subscription Price

HubSpot Director of Customer Success, Stephen O'Keefe, shared two different experiences of getting prices raised -- and the different results that came next, depending on the approach. I'll let him tell the story in his own words.


I sat down to pay a few bills last month and noticed that my Comcast bill went up quite a bit -- by 17%, to be exact.


In comparing the most recent bills, I noticed that I lost the "bundle discount" of $31.


I didn't get any sort of notification prior to the increase, and didn't remember the details of what I negotiated a couple of years ago, so this was something of a surprise.  

I think most of us non-cord cutters have experienced what followed. You call the cable company, complain, maybe ask to speak to a manager, and threaten to change to a competitor -- usually after waiting on hold for a while, first.

It's a terrible experience.

I contemplated paying the extra fee just so I didn't have to deal with the hassle of re-negotiating. But it's almost $400 annually, so I went through with the charade of pretending to cancel.

The woman I spoke with was nice enough and I didn't have to "escalate" the situation. I was able to get my discount back by extending my contract for two years. The whole phone conversation was probably 20 or 30 minutes, inclusive of hold time.

My Comcast Net Promoter Score® (NPS) is somewhere between a four and six -- putting me solidly in the "detractor" category.

It was coincidental timing but I also got an email from Nextlix a couple of weeks ago, ago informing me that my rate was going up $1 -- from $9.99 to $10.99 -- or 10%.


I didn't think twice about it as the price-to-value ratio here is great. Why?

First, nominally, it's a small increase. Second, I'm getting more value from Netflix than ever before. The app is better than ever, it's easy to access on multiple devices, and the content is great, too.  And finally, best of all, I don't have to talk to anyone to negotiate a price or contract length. My Netflix NPS is a 9 or 10 -- I'm a big promoter.

I'd wager that Netflix has a high customer NPS. Its subscriber base is through the roof, and Netflix stock is up 70% in the last year.

Comcast's stock, on the other hand, is up 2%.

There are obviously a lot of factors at play here but -- at a high level -- I think their valuation is a reflection of their ability to adapt to changing consumer habits and expectations.

I share this more as an example of a process that matches my evolving expectations as a consumer -- and my prediction that more and more customers will come to expect the Netflix approach over the Comcast approach.

Do you have a good customer service story of your own? Share it with me on Twitter so we can keep the conversation going.

Net Promoter, Net Promoter System, Net Promoter Score, NPS and the NPS-related emoticons are registered trademarks of Bain & Company, Inc., Fred Reichheld and Satmetrix Systems, Inc.

State of Customer Service

 State of Customer Service

Originally published Dec 18, 2017 8:00:00 AM, updated June 05 2019


Customer Service