Best Practices to Enhance Customer Service in 2014
Behold the quirks of today’s modern consumer: They’re using more communication channels than ever before, making all purchase decisions based on reviews they read online, and expect things to go right, all the time, immediately. Does your organization have what it takes to keep up?
Take a look at some best practices we found to be helpful to us and will hopefully provide you with insight into reaching these modern consumers and, most importantly, building strong, long-lasting relationships.
Practice Being Customer-centric
“Your website isn’t the center of your universe. Your Facebook page isn’t the center of your universe. Your mobile app isn’t the center of your universe. The customer is the center of your universe.” – Bruce Ernst
This means putting your customers before yourself. The moment that your whole organization focuses on and understands the power of a happy customer, the more success you’ll see with other aspects of your business. Most customers today value 1) Speed and 2) Real value.
Focus efforts on being there for your customers when they need you most. Target learned the hard way when a loyal customer was unfortunately left hanging on their customer service phone line for six hours. As you can probably guess, she wasn’t very happy and the media got hold of the story fairly quickly.
Additionally, take the time to respond to questions, comments, reviews on all online review sites and social media properties as soon as possible, and in a way that makes each and every customer feel important. Try out a reputation management service that notifies you to keep up if you have to. Customers are most upset when they don’t feel important, but if you make sure to remedy issues and exceed their expectations, they’ll forgive, forget, and may even refer you to their friends. Actually practice what you preach and the transparency of today’s digital era will be ever in your favor.
Provide Customer Service for Employees
Take a look at this recent Forbes article about Starbucks’s customer service experience in 2014: “By large, and in the long run, companies that treat employees well are the same companies that treat their customers well.” – Micah Solomon
Treating employees with the same respect, praise, and great offerings given to customers attracts your employees to stay, not stray, and helps you provide the best customer service possible to your customers.
And for those companies that are practicing some major backward policies? Well, just take a look at what happened to Papa John’s when the CEO decided to cut employee hours. Pizza people everywhere were left with a bad taste in their mouths.
Share Helpful Resources
“The way to a customer’s heart is much more than a loyalty program. Making customer evangelists is about creating experiences worth talking about.” – Valeria Maltoni
It’s all about the experience now. Loyalty programs without substance lose their momentum really quickly. What works is genuinely providing helpful information and resources that are related to your business, products, and services. Through inbound marketing and content marketing initiatives, you can share information that attracts customers and helps them learn more about your business or organization without losing interest. What will lose today’s customer’s interest? Old, traditional push marketing that sounds like this: “I’m great, this is great, you want to be great? Buy this now, now, now.”
Think Quality over Quantity
“Traditional corporations, particularly large-scale service and manufacturing businesses are organized for efficiency. Or consistency. But not joy. Joy comes from surprise and connection and humanity and transparency and new… if you fear special requests, if you staff with cogs, if you have to put it all in a manual, then the chances of amazing someone are really quite low.” – Seth Godin
Seth Godin couldn’t have said it better. Remembering a simple rule – to give people more than they expect to get – is a way to bring your customer service to a whole new level and will take your organization very far. Additionally, to not exhaust your resources or your team, you may need to make sure you set expectations in the beginning and choose the right clients and customers that fit the bill for your business, as well as the products and services you provide. Less hiccups and smoother sailing will be a result.
About Small Screen Producer
Small Screen Producer is a full service, marketing firm located in Houston, Texas that specializes in online digital media marketing through a 4-step process. Step 1: WE PLAN a custom web presence strategy for your business through website design and development, mobile development, social media account creation and branding. STEP 2: We then POSITION your brand through Pay-Per-Click advertising and search engine optimize tactics that include on-page and off-page SEO that are Google and Bing approved. STEP 3: We then PROMOTE your brand using an Inbound marketing strategy or a content marketing strategy to help you accomplish your marketing goals. We do this through blogging, video production, infographics, call-to-actions, landing pages, and free educational offers. We help you build trust and rapport with your customer base. STEP 4: We then PROTECT your brand’s web presence with a reputation management program that monitors social media and on line reviews. Get started today with a free online marketing assessment of your company’s web presence. Your company deserves it.