Back in the 1970s, my dad was already complaining about the decline in customer service he’d witnessed in his life time. But then he’d inevitably mention USAA as the shining exception. “How in the world do they do it?” he’d ponder. “No one else seems to be able to anymore. ”
Word of Mouth Delivers Loyal Customers
When it came time for me to get my own auto policy (some cough-cough-something years ago,) I naturally selected USAA. The thought of shopping around never crossed my mind. Why? Because I knew my dad held them in exceptionally high regard. In fact, nearly every USAA member I know became one because we knew another USAA member -- by word-of-mouth.
What drives all that viral acquisition? The exceptional service experiences USAA delivers. Because USAA customers are so impressed, so delighted by their service experiences, they talk about them with infectious enthusiasm.
Without a doubt, that USAA acquired me as a member is 100% attributable to my dad’s service experience. And because of the service experiences I’ve also had, never have I so much as peeked at a quote from another insurance carrier in my entire life. That’s the kind of customer loyalty most brands would die for, but few see.
Here’s a taste of what’s kept me so loyal:
Twice, I’ve entered claims with USAA -- both times for robberies. The process was effortless:
- One phone call
- One fax
- One check
No receipts, no documentation supporting the value of lost items required, just a list of what I thought it was all worth. “Just fax that list over and we’ll get you your check.” Both times, the checks arrived in under a week. They never threatened to raise my rates or sent me scary letters. They did send me a very polite letter suggesting I might consider moving to a safer neighborhood, which I did.
My most recent USAA service experience happened just last week. I’d discovered fraudulent charges on my credit card and phoned them on New Year’s Day. I experienced zero hold time and was transferred only once. I had full resolution in 6 minutes (yes, I timed it), which included being thanked for my (cough-cough something years) of membership.
Customer Service Trumps All
Now, these kinds of experiences really stand out for me, and it’s because of them that I am not just loyal, but a sincere brand advocate. I am literally proud of this brand as if it were a good friend. I speak very positively about USAA always and it pleases me no end when others do, too. And they do -- a lot.