“Building Customer Service and Trust are Keys to A Service Business”
Marci Lobel-Esrig, Founder and General Counsel, SilverBills
Making the customers feel that they are a priority is a key to establishing the trust necessary in the kind of business that Marci Lobel-Esrig started. SilverBills helps clients manage their bills, which requires reviewing, storing and ensuring that bills get paid for people who can’t manage or don’t want to manage those invoices, like rent, utilities and tele-communications. Marci got the idea when she saw that her Aunt was having difficulty managing her financial affairs. She also saw that it was necessary to be very transparent about how the company did its work to earn the trust of her clients. Her website has three videos explaining how the process works, essentially by remotely accessing bills sent by customers and assigning customers to work through specific, dedicated account managers via phone calls instead of online, if they prefer. In this age of technology and automation, the most difficult level of technology a customer needs to manage is a phone if they enroll with SilverBills. This focus on the comfort level of her clients and making it easy for them to work with SilverBills using pre-paid, pre-addressed envelopes makes the business more accessible for older adults.
Marci started the business by herself, but she understood that, in order to scale, she needed to work with a team. Her commitment to customer service was so high that the first hire for her company was a director of customer care services. Today, the largest number of staff at SilverBills are account managers. In planning for future growth, a portion of the money she will be raising will be devoted to expanding the capabilities and the size of the account management team.
Since launching SilverBills, Marci has been building her reputation to generate trust among individuals, governments and professionals. Marci found that, as a lawyer with 25 years’ experience, she had sufficient legal skills to manage her company, but took a variety of courses in other areas. She has worked to establish relationships with a number of strategic partners and vendors working with the same target market – like AARP and the New York City Department for the Aging. Her efforts helped her get positive press in publications such as Consumer Report and Bank Rate, which helps her company’s credibility among seniors and their adult children.
What does Marci recommend new entrepreneurs do? Learn as much as possible and participate in programs that will help you develop the new skills you may need to run a successful business.
To reach Marci or learn more about SilverBills, visit www.silverbills.com or email Marci@silverbills.com
(c) 2020 Emelie Smith Calbick and Betty Wong