Great service has people talking, sharing and paying it forward

New study from American Express reveals that 90% of Canadians will talk about an exceptional service experience

TORONTO, Oct. 7, 2013 /CNW/ - It's said that good news travels fast, but according to a new international study by American Express on the social and emotional impact of good customer service, it also travels far. Thanks to the immediacy and the reach of social media, a good - or bad - service story can literally travel the globe moments after it occurs.

The study, consisting of respondents from Canada, Australia, Mexico and the UK, found that Canadians like to talk about good service. A full ninety per cent of Canadians will tell others - on average 20 people - about a great service experience. Thirty-two per cent will tell others within an hour and 45 per cent will do so within the same day of experiencing great service.

So what makes a great service act so shareable? According to participants, the top three ingredients for a great service experience are spontaneity, knowing that someone has provided the act of service 'from the heart' rather than it being pre-planned (cited by 51 per cent); feeling supported, the fact someone has gone above and beyond to solve a problem for you (cited by 39 per cent); and it being a personalized experience, tailored specifically to your wants and needs (cited by 29 per cent).

"We commissioned this study because we were curious about how people define great service. We are thrilled with the results as they are right in line with what we, at American Express, strive to do every day," says Julie Hay, Vice President and General Manager, World Service at American Express Canada. "At American Express, we believe in making an emotional connection and building relationships with our customers. Our servicing ethos, Relationship Care, is about serving customers, not transactions. We understand that every person and every situation is unique and should be treated as such. In this age of social media and the propensity of people to share their service experiences, it's simply good business to make exceptional service a part of a company's DNA."

The study also revealed that good service motivates those hearing the story to provide a similar experience. In fact, 64 per cent of those who hear a story about great service actually feel emotionally compelled to pay it forward and pass on another act of great service to someone else.

"As someone who has aimed to provide great service to guests of the Four Seasons Hotel Toronto for over 30 years, there is no better feeling than knowing that clients have a memorable and pleasurable experience," Liloo Alim, Concierge Four Seasons Hotel Toronto. "Whether it's booking reservations at a packed restaurant, providing directions to wandering visitors or fulfilling the most particular requests, great service keeps consumers coming back and keeps me motivated to going above and beyond for our guests."

Notes to Editor

  • The American Express Great Service Travels Miles Study, was conducted Censuswide in July 2013 across four countries - UK, Canada, Mexico and Australia.
  • This figure was calculated by taking the average distance great service travels around the world for each source country (Australia, Canada, Mexico or the UK), adding these together and taking another average to find a figure for all four markets combined.
  • A total of 8,053 participants took part in the research from the UK, Canada, Mexico and Australia. A representative sample of 2,000 or more people was taken in each country, aged from 18 to 60 and with a 50/50 gender split.

About American Express Canada
American Express in Canada operates as Amex Bank of Canada and Amex Canada Inc. Both are wholly owned subsidiaries of the New York based American Express Travel Related Services Company, Inc., the largest operating unit of the American Express Company. Amex Bank of Canada is the issuer of American Express charge and credit cards, with outstanding products like the American Express® Gold Rewards Card, the Platinum Card ®, the American Express® AeroplanPlus® Gold Card. Amex Canada Inc. operates the Corporate Travel and Travellers Cheques divisions in Canada. American Express opened its first offices in Toronto and Hamilton in 1853 and now employs 3,700 Canadians coast-to-coast. For more information, visit or connect with us on Facebook, YouTube and Twitter.


SOURCE: American Express

For further information:

Amanda Betti
American Express Canada
(905) 474-7903

Alexandra Peco
High Road Communications
(416) 644-2298

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