Increasingly in recent years, many businesses have placed a stronger emphasis on customer service. Successful companies understand that true growth and expansion can only be achieved if they focus as much on customer retention as they do on customer acquisitions. They know that the only way to inspire genuine customer loyalty and satisfaction is to invest in the service they provide the customer – after the sale.
As a result, there are many customer service experts out there who are regularly sharing their insights into how businesses can improve the customer experience. Businesses operating in the service and support industry can only get better if they stay informed about customer service trends, and who better to learn from than these customer service thought leaders?
We’ve compiled a list of 12 customer service experts you can follow in 2023 to help you up your customer service game and push the bar higher.
The importance of excellent customer service
Before we get into the list of customer service experts, let’s take a look at why excellent customer service is so very important. Study after study shows that what draws customers to a brand is the amazing customer service, and not only that it makes them stay. How customers feel they are being treated directly influences how much they are willing to spend with you.
83% of customers choose good customer service, outside of price and product, as the most important factor when deciding what to buy. If your customer service is bad, then you are literally driving customers away. When customers contact you, it is an opportunity for businesses to turn a problem into a moment of delight.
Your customer-facing employees are the ones who create a good impression of your brand with customers, responsible for improving customer engagement. Outside of customer service, customers are unlikely to have contact with any other human being. The performance of your customer teams is critical for developing those relationships with customers that persist in the long-term.
Every single customer service expert on this list is an evangelist of the customer service principles that every business should live by. A customer-first culture is an excellent predictor of business growth, expansion and overall success.
12 customer service experts to follow
We’ll now launch right into our top customer service experts you can follow.
1. Shep Hyken
“Every Moment of Truth, even if it is a Moment of Misery, is an opportunity to create a Moment of Magic.” – Shep Hyken
Our first expert on the list barely needs an introduction – Shep Hyken is the Chief Amazement Officer and owner of Shepard Presentations. He is a thought leader, speaker and customer service consultant and has published several best-selling books, including ‘The Cult of the Customer’ and ‘Be Amazing or Go Home’.
Shep is renowned for his no-nonsense advice for how every business can improve its customer service to drive revenue. He is an expert in helping companies to get their customers to come back, driving customer loyalty and improving customer retention.
He regularly shares customer service articles and tips on his customer service blog that businesses can learn from. He emphasizes that customers no longer compare you to your competitor, but to the best service they have ever had – from anyone.
2. Jeff Toister
“Waiting for a big moment can be a trap for employees. It causes them to miss smaller, everyday opportunities to align their actions with the service culture.” – Jeff Toister
Jeff Toister is an author, consultant, and trainer who helps organizations to develop customer-focused cultures, and he’s the President of Toister Performance Solutions. He’s the best-selling author of four customer service books including ‘The Service Culture Handbook’. More than 1 million people have taken one of Jeff’s video-based training courses on LinkedIn Learning.
Jeff’s first experience of serving a customer ended in failure, which led to him becoming obsessed with building customer service cultures. As a result, Jeff regularly provides customer service training to businesses that want to improve.
Jeff runs a customer service blog called Inside Customer Service on which he shares many actionable tips about how to improve customer service in your business. He shares the tips frequently in the form of stories about how customer service has impacted his life, and his articles are often funny and relatable.
3. Micah Solomon
“It would be ideal if customers felt as much gratitude as we who serve them are, realistically, owed.
The reality, though, is many customers have tunnel vision that keeps service providers, out of their awareness. Yet we can still hold our heads up as professionals.” – Micah Solomon
Micah Solomon is a customer service consultant, customer service trainer, eLearning creator, and author, as well as a Senior Contributor to Forbes.com. Micah shares deep insights into customer service and customer experience, and is the best-selling author of books that include ‘Ignore Your Customer (And They’ll Go Away)’.
Micah has been described as “the world’s #1 customer service turnaround expert” by Inc. Magazine, and he’s also been named by The Financial Post as “The New Guru of Customer Service Excellence.” As an author who’s regularly been featured in Bloomberg BusinessWeek, ABC, CBS, NBC, CNBC, and, repeatedly, in the Harvard Business Review, Micah is well-worth following.
Micah runs a customer service blog that shares tips on how to improve customer service and the customer experience. He shares insights from his own training.
4. Lincoln Murphy
“The best way to avoid surprising your customer is to communicate – clearly and directly – in a way that ensures they understand what they’re being told.” – Lincoln Murphy
Lincoln Murphy is a customer success and growth consultant who is also a keynote speaker. He is credited as inventing customer success. He hosts a customer success podcast called Impact Weekly as well as co-authoring the original customer success book called ‘Customer Success: How Innovative Companies Are Reducing Churn and Growing Recurring Revenue’.
He’s the founder of Sixteen Ventures, using customer success-driven growth to help startups and SaaS companies to improve sales and customer retention. On his blog, ‘Customer-centric Growth’, Lincoln shares insights into customer success and growth strategy, teaching companies how to be more successful with their customers.
5. Jeanne Bliss
“Customers who love you will market for you more powerfully than you can possibly market yourself.” – Jeanne Bliss
Jeanne Bliss helps companies to achieve business growth through leadership bravery and elevated business practices. She is known around the world for revolutionizing business to “earn” customer-driven growth, which is the focus of her speaking engagements and books.
As a five-time Chief Customer Officer and coach to over 20,000 leaders, Jeanne’s practices are field-tested and proven. Bliss’ five-Competencies for customer-driven growth have been adopted around the world, and her four best selling books on customer experience and leadership are the guidebooks of the CX Profession.
Jeanne uses the story of her father who ran a shoe business as an example of how businesses can become more customer-driven. Over forty years, he sold shoes to a generation of children, resulting in a line of people three blocks long who wanted to say goodbye when he retired.
6. Bill Quiseng
“Don’t treat your customers like you would like to be treated. Instead treat your customers a little better than you would like to be treated.” – Bill Quiseng
Bill Quiseng is a customer service expert and Chief Experience Officer who helps businesses build customer loyalty through the customer experience. He’s a customer experience thought leader who has won numerous awards, and is especially known for his experience in the hospitality industry.
Bill shares tips, insight and inspiration on how they can improve their delivery of customer service, which he argues will lead to increased profits for your business. It doesn’t matter how large or small your business is – superior customer experiences will drive customer loyalty.
Bill advocates for caring for both customers and employees, resulting in customers who believe that they matter to your business. Not focusing on profits will ultimately lead to more profits for your business.
7. Blake Morgan
“Everyone from the CEO down to the contact center agent should know what it feels like to be a customer.” – Blake Morgan
Blake Morgan is a Customer Experience Futurist and keynote speaker who is the author of two books. Customer experience is tightly linked with the quality of customer service your business offers. Her second bestselling book is called “The Customer Of The Future: 10 Guiding Principles For Winning Tomorrow’s Business” and she helps businesses improve their customer experiences.
Blake is a guest lecturer at Columbia University and adjunct faculty at the Rutgers MBA program. She is a contributor to Forbes and the Harvard Business Review. Blake is the host of The Modern Customer Podcast and a weekly customer experience video series on YouTube.
Blake is interested in the intersection of technology, communication, relationships and people, and customer experience is a combination of these four things. She is one of the founders of the term customer experience, which wasn’t being taken seriously when she first started in the industry.
8. Flavio Martins
“Customers don’t care about your policy, they care about ACTION.” – Flavio Martins
Flavio is the VP of Operations and Customer Service at DigiCert, Inc. As an experienced customer experience leader and customer service fanatic, he’s on a mission to show how customer experience can be a competitive advantage to win customer loyalty.
As well as having more than 15 years industry experience, Flavio is an award-winning customer service blogger. He’s published a book called ‘Win the Customer: 70 Simple Rules for Sensational Service’, which gives businesses practical ways that they can improve their customer service delivery.
Flavio posts interesting articles on twitter on topics ranging from the impact of technology, to customer experience, to how businesses can make their customer service better.
9. Jay Baer
“In today’s world, meaningful differences between businesses are rarely rooted in price or product, but instead in customer experience.” – Jay Baer
Jay Baer is a marketing and customer experience expert, seventh-generation entrepreneur, the author of six best-selling business books and the founder of five multi-million dollar companies. He is also the host or co-host of several podcasts.
Jay is well-known for his keynote speaking on topics ranging from marketing, to customer service, to customer experience. As a customer experience consultant, he teaches businesses how to grow through word-of-mouth marketing. He shares a twice-monthly newsletter called The Baer Facts, which includes marketing and customer experience case studies and advice, tequila reviews, book reviews, and life hacks.
Jay’s twitter is also worth a follow because he often shares customer experience resources and links to events you can join.
10. Marsha Collier
“How you market your business may be your first impression to a prospective customer. This is your opportunity to entice them with empathy and transparency.” – Marsha Collier
Marsha Collier is a bestselling author, television personality, radio host and consultant who works with companies to improve their digital experiences. Her published works include the ‘Ultimate Online Customer Service Guide’ along with many titles in the “For Dummies” series.
On her website, Marsha shares tips on technologies that small businesses can use to sell more. She is a popular speaker at events, and hosts a technology podcast that gets 20,000 downloads per month. She describes herself as a customer service fanatic, which she helps businesses use as a way to win more business, with a focus on social media.
Marsha is also the co-host of the #custserv twitter chat, created in 2009 and dedicated to all things customer service.
11. Adam Toporek
“To be a hero to your customers, you need to focus on the simple, everyday moments.” – Adam Toporek
Adam Toporek is a customer service expert, keynote speaker and customer experience trainer. He uses his lessons from the frontlines of entrepreneurship to help businesses of all sizes, and is known for being a customer experience thought leader.
Adam’s book ‘Be Your Customer’s Hero’ continues to be hailed by people across industries and organizational levels as one of the best frontline customer service books on the market.
Adam is a prolific podcaster, and currently the co-host of the Crack the Customer Code podcast, which is a popular customer experience podcast that has over 100,000 downloads. It features interviews and insights from a wide range of experts in the field, including topics such as how to increase customer loyalty through social media.
12. Annette Franz
“You can’t transform something you don’t understand. If you don’t know and understand what the current state of the customer experience is, how can you possibly design the desired future state?” – Annette Franz
Annette Franz is a customer experience coach, keynote speaker and author. Annette has more than 30 years in the customer experience profession. Annette’s published titles include ‘Customer Understanding: Three Ways to Put the “Customer” in Customer Experience (and at the Heart of Your Business)’, and ‘Built to Win: Designing a Customer-Centric Culture That Drives Value for Your Business’.
As a customer experience professional, Annette is the Founder and CEO of CX Journey Inc., a company bringing in the new wave of customer-centric businesses. As a popular thought leader, Annette has attracted audiences across the country who wanted to learn about her methods and philosophy, some of which has been shared in her books.
Whatever industry you’re in, you can learn from these top customer service experts who have limitless tips and insights to share. Whether you’re looking for practical strategies or simply inspiration, these customer service pros will be able to help. Not only are many of them active on twitter and their own blogs, there are also tons of customer service books that you can check out.
By keeping abreast of popular customer service trends and developments, you can ensure that you are continuously improving your customer service delivery. The customer service landscape never stands still and businesses must be constantly learning if they want to keep up.