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At TD Canada Trust and TD Waterhouse, May 11, 2007 is Customer Appreciation Day TORONTO, May 9 /CNW/ - When asked what is the best way for companies to express appreciation for their business, three out of four (74%) Canadian consumers say, "Just show me good service." This preference far outranks any other form of thanks, including a gift (13%) or a donation on their behalf to a charity (7%). And convenient hours of operation are highly prized by Canadians, with 97% of respondents agreeing that it is important to them. These are some of the findings of the TD Bank Financial Group Customer Loyalty Poll conducted by Ipsos Reid. The on-line omnibus poll, which explores perceptions on customer service and customer loyalty, was conducted between April 13 and April 17, 2007 among 1,000 adults aged 18 and older across Canada. Results based on a sample size of 1000 are considered accurate to within +/- 3.1 percentage points, 19 times out of 20. The survey confirms some well-established tenets of customer service. For example, a strong majority (84%) of Canadians agree that one experience can make or break their relationship with a particular brand or company. As well, more than nine-in-ten (94%) say they have shared their stories for both good and bad customer service with friends and family, and eight-in-ten claim that their customer service stories have influenced the purchasing habits of others. The 'word-of-mouth' method of expressing discontent is used more than formal complaint channels - six-in-ten say they have complained in writing to at least one company about bad service. "Canadians' passion for the topic of customer service is astonishing," says Tim Hockey, Group Head of Personal Banking, TD Canada Trust. "We talk to about 400,000 customers every year in our research, and I personally meet with hundreds of them, and our findings are highly consistent with those of this survey. People really do remember every great experience and they never forget a bad one. Listening to their stories helps us constantly improve our customer service." Overall, Canada gets high marks for customer service when compared to other countries. More than three-quarters of Canadians (77%) say Canada is the best place for service from any type of company. The United States is a distant runner-up at 8%, and everywhere else scores 4% or less. However, when asked about the last time they received great service, only 62% of Canadians say it was within the past month. On a regional basis, Manitoba/Saskatchewan (71%) and BC (70%) are virtually tied in having the most people who had great service in the past month. At the opposite end of the spectrum, Quebecers (54%) and Albertans (53%) are the least likely to say they received great service within the past month. Indeed, 14% of Albertans claim it has been more than a year since they experienced great service, and one-in-ten Quebecers say they have never received great service from a company. "At first glance, the 62% finding for all Canadians doesn't seem that remarkable one way or the other," continues Hockey. "But then you realize that, sadly, almost four out of ten Canadians polled haven't had a great customer experience in at least a month. Canadian companies may have ranked higher than other countries on service, but that doesn't mean we can be complacent. The numbers tell us that as front-line service providers we have to continually improve the customer experience for Canadians." The poll found a number of strong regional differences in perceptions of customer service: - When asked which service attributes are the most important to them, Quebecers are most likely to choose respect, of those Atlantic Canadians polled, the highest percent prefer friendliness, and the rest of Canada prefers "knowledgeable." - Don't mess with Atlantic Canadians and Albertans. At 97% and 96% respectively, they are the most likely to share service stories - good or bad - with friends and relatives. - BC and Ontario residents are most likely to write a complaint letter (64% and 63% respectively); Albertans the least likely (47%). - Atlantic Canadians like customer loyalty programs, with virtually all (98%) indicating they belong to at least one program. Canadians on the whole are a nation of joiners, with 90% belonging to at least one loyalty program. "Respect, friendliness, knowledge, all of these attributes come together to create a positive experience for our clients," says Bill Hatanaka, Group Head, Wealth Management, TD Bank Financial Group. "Every interaction is an opportunity to deliver a superior client experience. Our relationships with clients may last a lifetime, but we know that each time we assist them, we make a lasting impression." On Friday, May 11, TD Canada Trust branches and TD Waterhouse locations will celebrate Customer Appreciation Day. An annual tradition, customers are invited to join in the celebrations with TD employees and enjoy cake and coffee as a thank you for their loyalty. "Many of our employees will be out meeting customers on May 11 - it's a great opportunity because even though we're all part of delivering the customer experience, a lot of employees don't actually get a chance to meet customers face to face. Customer Appreciation Day gives us a chance to ask questions, hear their opinions and thank customers in person for their business," added Hockey. Winner of the coveted Synovate and J.D. Power awards for best customer service, TD serves its customers at more than 1,000 TD Canada Trust branches and 136 TD Waterhouse locations across Canada. Customers can also bank on-line through the award-winning EasyWeb, over the phone with EasyLine, and at more than 2,500 state-of-the-art Green Machines in convenient locations across the country. TD Waterhouse clients can invest in person with the help of a financial planner or an Investment Advisor or online at About Ipsos Reid Ipsos-Reid is Canada's market intelligence leader and the country's leading provider of public opinion research. With operations in eight cities, Ipsos-Reid employs more than 300 researcher professionals and support staff in Canada. The company has the biggest network of telephone call centres in Canada, as well as the largest pre-recruited household and on-line panels. Ipsos-Reid's Canadian marketing research and public affairs practices are staffed with seasoned research consultants with extensive industry-specific backgrounds, offering the premier suite of research vehicles in Canada - including the Ipsos Trend Report, the leading source of public opinion in the country - all of which provide clients with actionable and relevant information. Ipsos-Reid is an Ipsos company, a leading global survey-based market research group. To learn more, visit About TD Bank Financial Group The Toronto-Dominion Bank and its subsidiaries are collectively known as TD Bank Financial Group. TD Bank Financial Group serves more than 14 million customers in four key businesses operating in a number of locations in key financial centres around the globe: Canadian Personal and Commercial Banking including TD Canada Trust; Wealth Management including TD Waterhouse and an investment in TD Ameritrade; Wholesale Banking, including TD Securities; and U.S. Personal and Commercial Banking through TD Banknorth. TD Bank Financial Group also ranks among the world's leading on-line financial services firms, with more than 4.5 million on-line customers. TD Bank Financial Group had CDN$408 billion in assets, as of January 31, 2007. The Toronto-Dominion Bank trades on the Toronto and New York Stock Exchanges under the symbol "TD". For further information: Tamara Kaftalovich, MAVERICK Public Relations, (416) 640-5525 x234,

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