How a Small Insurance Company Has 70% Market Share in New Hampshire
I have been following Tom Raffio, President of Northeast Delta Dental since 1990. The biggest problem of many CEO's is that they are not relentless when it comes to customer service. Tom is relentless. The results speak for themselves and they are AWESOME!
Many readers ask me for examples of smaller firms that are service leaders. Northeast Delta Dental has approximately 197 full time employees and is definitely a great example.
This is a dental insurance company in 3 states, Maine, Vermont, and New Hampshire (If you follow politics this one is one of the most important battleground states for anyone running for President.) They have 3 customers:
The company that buys their insurance plan.
The employee at the company who uses their dental insurance.
The dentist who they partner with.
Market share in New Hampshire is 70%, Vermont 60% and Maine 50%. They are retaining well over 97% of their customers.
Tom moved in 1996 from Delta Dental of Massachusetts to become President of Northeast Delta Dental. In 1990 he helped to start the Guarantee of Service Excellence (GOSE) and then made some minor changes and rolled it out with his new company. He increased revenue from $57,559,309 million in 1995 to $388,018,309 and $6,234,515 Net Income in 2018. They now have 457,717 primary subscribers representing more than 880,000 covered individuals by the end of 2018.
Northeast Delta Dental is committed to providing extraordinary service to all customers including purchasers made up of employers, unions, associations, individual product buyers, government and municipal workers; subscribers who are covered through purchaser groups; and providers or dentists. To emphasize its commitment, it guarantees seven major areas of service and reinforces them with its comprehensive refund policy. Northeast Delta Dental has retained 100 percent of its largest purchasers (all three state accounts of Maine, New Hampshire and Vermont) and typically more than 95 percent of all other purchasers for the past ten years.
No competitor has copied its service guarantee. Most are looking for ways to work with Northeast Delta Dental.
Here I showed their first year in 1996 and results for 2018. This is the only company I know of in the world that puts their money on the line instead of baloney.
You can also buy the 13th edition of my book, Achieving Excellence Through Customer Service at Amazon or directly from our store.
2019 Book 13th Edition, Achieving Excellence Through Customer Service
I just updated my book Achieving Excellence Through Customer Service with a 2019 13th Edition. The electronic version is on our web site now. We have gone to print but will not have the new book until March. In January we had another large order from Ethiopian Airlines which took all our inventory. We have maintained the same price of $19.95 and $9.95 for the electronic version.
Every two years I update the book with new information. Amazon has inventory of the 10th Edition. We are working with them to add the 13th Edition for Kindle and in March the new book.
Amazon Increased Sales $55 Billion, a 31% Increase - The Global Leader in Customer Service
Amazon just released its 2018 financial results. They increased revenue $55 billion, a 31% increase, to $232.9 billion. In 2017 they had a $41.9 billion increase with revenue of $177.9 billion. Net income increased to $10.1 billion. International sales are $65.9 billion or 28% and AWS sales are $25.66 billion or 11%.
Amazon has a better grasp of customer service than any firm in the world. Everything is built round the customer. Very few firms understand the power of the Service Strategy Jeff Bezos the founder does. His net worth is now $150 billion.
Most firms use technology to push the customer away. Amazon does the opposite. I have never had anyone at Amazon tell me NO. This is the first word almost every firm in the world teaches their employees. They focus on an awesome customer experience. They trust the customer and employee. Very few firms do this. Amazon is a master of price, empowerment and service recovery. It is difficult to get a job at Amazon. The screening is very intense. Most firms hire anyone with a pulse. In the US on November 1, 2018 Amazon raised the minimum wage for US employees (250,000) full or part time to $15 hour. In October 2018 after the announcement of $15 they received a record of 850,000 applications for the hourly positions.