The biggest form of flattery for a community bank or credit union? A positive recommendation. Au00a0u003ca href=u0022https://www.helpscout.com/75-customer-service-facts-quotes-statistics/u0022 target=u0022_blanku0022 rel=u0022noopeneru0022u003eTemkin Group reportu003c/au003eu00a0stated 77% of those who had an excellent service experience were likely to recommend an institution. With so many social media and online review sites, itu2019s easier than ever for people to spread their satisfaction to the masses. And the masses are listening: accordingu00a0u003ca href=u0022https://www.brightlocal.com/resources/online-reviews-statistics-2019/u0022 target=u0022_blanku0022 rel=u0022noopeneru0022u003eonline review statisticsu003c/au003e, 78% of consumers trust online reviews as much as personal recommendations.u00a0u003cstrongu003eu003cemu003eWhen it comes to youru00a0overdraft program, how do you define excellent service?u003c/emu003eu003c/strongu003ennu201cExcellent serviceu201d is objective and enigmaticu2014what sends one person over the moon may be a major letdown for another. To cover all your bases, make sure to adhere to these five core characteristics of great service.nnu003cstrongu003e1. Proactive.u003c/strongu003enFor every account holder who complains about an issue, there are dozens more who donu2019t say anythingu2014they simply take their business elsewhere. If you offer a transparent service with established limits, you can proactively avoid much of the confusion that comes with non-disclosed programs.nnu003cstrongu003e2. Painless.u003c/strongu003enSometimes, a customer wants to be u201cwowedu201d by a company. But more often, they just want to have the easiest experience possible. So, focus on reducing customer effort every step of the way. An overdraft service thatu2019s easy for your staff to explain and easy for your account holders to use makes for painless participation.nnu003cstrongu003e3. Professional.u003c/strongu003enTodayu2019s ultra-casualness in everyday interactions can sometimes spill over into customer service. Professionalism makes a lasting impression in all the right ways, including following industry best practices, remaining compliant, and treating all account holders fairly. When choosing an overdraft solution, pick one that adheres to all of these rules, plus offers continuing education opportunities so your staff can answer questions in a professional manner and help account holders determine if the service is right for them.nnu003cstrongu003e4. Personalized.u003c/strongu003enThough artificial intelligence (AI) can enhance customer service, it canu2019t be used in a one-size-fits-all way. With the right overdraft service technology and communication strategy, you can let your account holders choose how they receive communicationu2014via text message alerts, email or regular mail. This personalized approach reaches account holders in their preferred manner while keeping them informed. An aware consumer is a well-served consumer.nnu003cstrongu003e5. Positive.u003c/strongu003enWord-of-mouthu2014the least expensive and arguably most powerful form of marketingu2014comes from brand advocates who have had positive experiences with a company. The erosion of trust around big banks in the past decade offers community banks and credit unions a great opportunity to differentiate themselves through constant positive experiences. A large part of this will depend on how easy to use and how well-received your products and services are. In the case of overdraft protection, a static limit on a service that fills a need will foster trust and positivity.nnDelivering outstanding service has become an increasingly important competitive advantage for financial institutions. Itu2019s what consumers want, and 68% of customers would even pay more for it, according to au00a0u003ca href=u0022https://www.smallbizdaily.com/customer-service-expectations-are-rising-are-you-keeping-up/u0022 target=u0022_blanku0022 rel=u0022noopeneru0022u003ecustomer service expectations surveyu003c/au003e.nnA fully disclosed overdraft program offers one important piece of the service puzzle, and itu2019s a service thatu00a0accountu00a0holders are willing to pay for when they know what theyu2019re getting in to. At the end of the day, we all just want to feel good about where we spend (and keep) our money. When a credit union or bank makes that happen by going u201cabove and beyond,u201d you know youu2019re experiencing excellent service.