The customer service game has undergone a rapid transformation in recent years. New technology has meant that companies can deliver better customer service to more customers in more places in less time.
But like with any game, there are rules. And breaking those rules can mean the difference between winning and losing in today’s market.
In honor of National Customer Service Week, we’re going to share with you 3 very important game-changing rules that will transform your customer service and your customer experience.
RULE #1 – LISTEN TO WHERE YOUR CUSTOMERS ARE CONTACTING YOU
YOU may be a fan of call centers or email – but what about your customers? Where do they want to contact you? These days, the customer dictates when and where they want to interact with you – and companies need to be listening.
I don’t think anyone could have summed it up better than Jerry Oversen, Director of Global Passenger Services with Gogo.
In a recent webinar, Oversen told the audience, “We let our customers tell us where they want to reach us. At first they reached out via chat, so we responded to them there. But as soon as they started contacting us on social media, we put a social team into place to make sure we were delivering a great, real-time customer experience on those channels. If they told us they wanted to contact us on a billboard, then that’s where we’d respond. It’s all about what the customer wants.”
View the webinar: How Modern Companies are Revolutionizing Traditional Customer Service
RULE #2 – BE PROACTIVE NOT REACTIVE TO CREATE A GREAT CUSTOMER EXPERIENCE
Great customer service departments don’t wait for customer service to happen – they MAKE it happen. They look for ways outside of the norm to engage with customers.
I love to watch the Twitter feeds from the the sales team at Sparkcentral. They NEVER miss an opportunity to connect with a prospect or customer. They respond on weekends. They respond in Spanish. And they follow the Twitter feeds of customers to look for unexpected opportunities to connect.
“Service is standard,” said John Affourtit, Sales Executive at Sparkcentral. “Experience is different. Be reactive, but also be proactive and pursue opportunities to engage with your customers.”
“A great customer experience is so much more than just answering questions and solving problems,” he said. “It’s about engaging with customers and prospects in real time and delivering opportunities they might not have thought of to help them succeed.”
The result? They build trust, deepen relationships and transform clients into friends.
RULE #3 – KEEP A CONSISTENT HUMAN VOICE ACROSS ALL CHANNELS
No one likes to interact with a machine. The days of automated responses and corporate speak are gone. These days, automated responses make a company seem lazy and apathetic.
Companies need to develop a consistent, human voice that reflects their core values while emotionally connecting with the consumer. And it’s easier than you think. It’s about letting employees be human and it’s about seeing the customer as human.
The more technology changes the way we do business, the more customers crave the human touch. Nameless and faceless corporations are now a thing of the past. Even the terms B2B and B2C are being replaced with terms like H2H – human to human.
If you want to succeed in today’s market, you need to be aware that the rules of the game are changing.
But with that change comes new opportunities to really get to know your customers and deliver good old-fashioned customer service in an ultra-modern way.