Ah, the Internet. It came here to make our lives easier: We can order food, find a date, and market our products from the comfort of our couch. And, we can go shopping! Shopping! – without having to find a parking spot, deal with crowds or stand in line. Being able to do things faster by skipping steps has become a way of life. But when it comes to customer service, you can’t afford to cut corners. If you want leads to turn into loyal customers, keep reading.
- Make it easy for people to contact you. Have you ever shopped at Zappos? If you haven’t had the pleasure, let me walk you through the process: You place your order, and you get a clever/funny/cute email confirmation. For example, if you made your purchase during the holidays, they might tell you that elves sang Christmas carols as they shipped your package. Unless you’re a Grinch, that will put a smile on your face.
And once you get the package? Right on the top flap, they include their customer service number. So, if those shoes don’t fit, you can call while the open box is still laying by your feet. And best of all? They answer phone calls promptly! Which leads us to the next point on this list…
- Human communications: Ask anyone what’s one of the most frustrating things when they call a customer service number, and chances are they will mention all the awful pre-recorded menu options. And, it always seems that they just “recently updated the menu, so please listen carefully.” So, we sit, and we listen to the five hundred and thirty-two asinine alternatives, hoping that one of them applies to us. Don’t annoy people from the get go. Have someone answer that phone.
- Actually LISTEN. Ok, so just because a human answered the call, it doesn’t necessarily mean they give a hoot about what we have to say. How infuriating is it to get through to a call center, only to have it be painfully obvious that they are following a script? “I’m sorry that you feel that way, ma’am, but [insert reason why they can’t help you].”
Do you think that caller is going to sigh and call it a night? NO! They will go to Yelp, your Facebook page, your Twitter page, FourSquare, and Google Reviews and write about how awful your business is. Nobody likes to feel slighted; much less when they paid money for a service or product. Train your staff to pay close attention to customers and bend over backwards to solve their concerns (within reason).
- Engage in conversations on social media: If someone leaves you a question on Facebook or Twitter, it’s not meant to be decoration on your page. Take a moment to reply and offer solutions for their issues. If done effectively, you might not even have to deal with a call center (try finding a Customer Service number for Spotify online. I dare you. But if you leave them a direct message on Twitter, they will answer within minutes).
- Treat your employees well: Who do you think is going to go the extra mile for your business? Someone who feels like a replaceable means to an end, or someone who feels appreciated? Train them well so that they have the tools to implement your policies, and reward good work when it merits it.
Marketing involves a lot of common sense; but it also requires a lot of learning by trial and error. Instead of going crazy trying to figure out a formula that works, contact us. If you’re in the tech business, Marketing Matters is here to help.