MOO uses its values as a model for what it means to be exceptional.
By Archana Mehta, Founder and CEO, AM Strategies
You’ve probably seen MOO’s catchy business cards that capture — and hold — your attention. If you haven’t, MOO creates business cards known for being out of the ordinary. Think rounded corners, luxe papers, and snazzy designs.
For over 10 years, MOO has been redefining design. The online print and design company allows customers to print business cards and other marketing materials on demand using its modern design aesthetic.
According to the MOO team, Founder and CEO Richard Moross’ aim in launching the company in 2006 was to “disrupt the trillion-dollar global print industry and make great design available to all.”
Today, MOO prints an average of 500,000 business cards every day, and the company has 500 employees in six locations in the United Kingdom and the United States. Last year, MOO printed almost 200 million business cards.
To achieve this kind of success, a company must have a strategy for customer service. In fact, customer service is an imperative at MOO. The company doesn’t just want its customers to be satisfied; MOO wants its customers to be thrilled. To fulfill this promise, the company holds dearly its key values. MOO abides by the acronym MAKEIT, which stands for “Make it simpler,” “Always deliver delight,” “Keep it human,” “Every detail counts,” “Imagine it better,” and “Tackle it together.”
According to Stephanie Shore, Chief Marketing Officer at MOO, these values are the centerpiece of the company’s culture. They impact how employees approach their jobs and in turn affect customers. “Here at MOO, [the values] are prominent,” Shore said. “Every employee has been through either a half-day or full-day session on those values and what they need for their particular business [role].”
MOO identified its core values a few years ago, but according to Shore, employees recently reaffirmed their commitment to these values by going through each one during a group exercise. “We wanted to make sure the values resonated with people at all levels and across all departments because we knew if it was something we were just trying top- down, the values wouldn’t stick,” she said.
From a customer service standpoint, the values have a huge impact on how employees respond to customers. According to MOO’s website, the MOO Promise is simple: “We’re not happy until you’re over the MOON.”
Exceptional customer service is pervasive at MOO. But how do the values impact the customer experience? Shore cited the “Always deliver delight” value as an example. “Sometimes when a customer is creating their business cards or postcards, they might make a mistake, and sometimes we make a mistake, but I think what we’re committed to as a company is we’re going to get it right,” Shore said.
The MOO Promise is never about nitpicking and trying to figure out whose fault it was. “That dialogue doesn’t even happen. The first step is fixing the issue. We’re going to get the order 100 percent right, and there’s not going to be a thought about anything else until that happens,” Shore said.
Some members of MOO’s support team are trained in specific issues or have expertise in certain areas, according to Shore. They’re the ones who are likely to speak to a customer who has a design issue or challenge. “We always want our customers to feel like all is okay, we’ve got this, and we’re taking care of it,” she said. “You go back to growing your business and to taking care of things that are important to you; you don’t have to worry about this.”
Shore uses the phrase “lather, rinse, repeat” to describe the values training workshops that every new employee (whether entry level or executive) goes through. “It’s definitely not a one and done. We do a lot of regular workshops, and then we regroup all the time to do additional workshops,” she said.
Shore believes the culture of a company is never complete, and likens it to the relationship between customers and support. “It’s all about continuous improvement,” she said. “I actually want to be able to learn along the way, and I think that’s really important in relation to customers and their needs because those needs are going to change over time, and you don’t have a stop point where the customer is satisfied and your job is done.”
Values training certainly plays a big part in how MOO employees interact with customers. But with six locations around the world, in three different time zones, it’s critical to connect with customers through various media, particularly social media.
MOO has a strong presence on Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook. The company devotes much of its social media efforts to creating personal connections with customers and telling customer stories. A lot of customer support also happens through social media.
Shore said the company has even had professional matchmaking successes take place through social media. For instance, when two customers were featured in the same blog post, one of them requested an introduction to the other and ended up hiring that person for a project. “That was a really cool thing for us to be able to connect customers directly,” Shore said.
MOO’s customer service team also utilizes “ride-alongs,” where employees pull up a chair and listen to a customer support call. Because the customer service teams are the most direct link to customers, employees can hear what challenges customers are facing and figure out how to work with other MOO teams to make things better. “It’s an opportunity to hear firsthand accounts,” Shore said. “This also goes back to the values and how we keep it human and listening to customers explaining their issues in their own words versus just getting that as a number in a report.”
Shore said MOO also is not afraid to use social media to admit it has done something wrong. “If things didn’t go as planned, we’re very happy to say ‘Wow, I’m really sorry that happened. We’ll get better next time,’ versus ‘Why don’t we take this offline?’ or ‘You’ve got it wrong,’” Shore said.
Shore feels the approachability of MOO’s brand and the love its customers have for the brand are things the company never takes for granted because it is grateful to have them. As MOO continues to grow, these are key focuses. The company continually asks: “How do we, as a brand, continue the relationship with our customers so it still feels like we’re that small company, and it doesn’t feel like, wow, MOO has grown so much that things feel different?” Shore said.
Approachability of the brand + customers’ love for the brand = things MOO never takes for granted.
Sometimes it’s the little things that make an exceptional customer experience. Shore said MOO goes out of its way to create “hidden moments of joy” that bring customers an unexpected laugh or giggle. For example, MOO prints catchy, clever notes and includes them with customer orders. Phrases like “you have cool hair” often put a smile on someone’s face, according to Shore.
“It’s just sort of a nice compliment. It doesn’t have anything to do with the work,” she said. “Some people won’t get excited, and it won’t be as meaningful to them, but for those that do, I think it’s the hidden moments of magic that we can deliver from a brand standpoint.”
MOO. (n.d.). The MOO Promise. Retrieved from https://www.moo.com/us/about/moo-promise.html
Archana Mehta is the Founder and CEO of AM Strategies, a marketing and communications firm based in Washington, D.C. She has spent the last 15 years helping companies with everything from marketing strategies to content development to product launches. In her “spare” time, she enjoys taking her toddler twins on adventures around the country.
Images provided by MOO