Don’t Get Comfortable With Your Customer Support
Published: February 8, 2022
Is your customer support outdated? Time to take action! Get proactive!
Would you walk into a meeting wearing a powder blue suit with pegged pants, no socks, and just a t-shirt under your suit jacket? Dressed to the nines a la Miami Vice? How about going around town in ripped jeans, hiking boots, and a flannel shirt tied around your waist? Or how about sporting a mullet or big hair that wouldn’t move in a wind tunnel from the 2 cans of Aqua Net it took to keep it in place?
Of course, you wouldn’t. These styles and trends are completely out. But it wasn’t always so. There was a time when the above-mentioned styles were all the rage… then things changed. They moved forward and as it always goes, old trends were replaced with new ones. The same thing happens with the customer experience. The old ways step aside for new ones. Are you keeping up?
You May Think Things Are Doing Ok
Your customers may not be as vocal and that silence can be deadly. However, a lot of companies live by the mantra “no news is good news” meaning, if no one is complaining then nothing must be wrong. In fact, they can become so complacent, the entire focus of the company can be directed in other places and customer support and service can be swept aside. Even slashing funding to divert elsewhere. But ask yourself, does your brand make it easy for them to communicate how they are feeling? Can they easily report issues, ideas, and concerns? Do you know if they are even satisfied with their current experience or is your company only interested in the revenue generated each month?
According to a study published by CustomerThink in 2020, 87% of organizations observed that customers’ expectations changed and that traditional experiences no longer satisfy them. No brand will be able to “get away with” the archaic ways of yore when it comes to the customers’ experience. Your customer base is changing. They’re no longer wearing old spice and using multi-colored pens. They are connected, informed, and won’t be satisfied with their grandparents’ dusty customer support processes.
Customer Support Should Be Proactive
…not always just reactive. Meaning, don’t wait until the you-know-what hits the fan to look into making changes.
Customer experience expert, Ben Motteram, says it all in an interview for the 200 most powerful influencers to follow in 2022:
“Don’t fall into the trap of waiting for something to happen before stepping up your CX game. Each day you wait is a day your customers are missing out on having an improved experience with you. “
As Ben mentions above, waiting around for something to “happen” before you make appropriate changes can cost time, money, and loss of customers. A lot of processes can become outdated, stale, and stagnant over time. Much like the styles of the 80’s and even 90’s. They were great when they were first introduced, and for a time worked well. But the world evolves, technology advances, and customers begin to expect more. You can read the full interview here.
Also, it’s not only the customer support that should be looked at. Mapping out the entire customer journey often can always be an eye-opener. Looking for gaps or chances to improve. You’ll want to cultivate a climate of continuous improvement when it comes to the experience your bloodline has. Without happy customers, you won’t have a company.
Show your customers you are in for the long term. That their happiness, experience, and complete satisfaction is important to you and your brand. Not just today and tomorrow but for years to come.
Upgrade By Offering Different Ways To Contact You
As an example, one way to upgrade is to look at the different ways your customers can reach you. Do you just give them one channel? Limited telephone contact or perhaps an email queue?
Employ other platforms and make it easier for your customers to find you. Or find ways to contact you. Use what they use instead of forcing them to jump through hoops and search for ways to report an issue. Making them do the heavy lifting, filling out endless forms, or entering their information over and over is tedious. Wouldn’t you rather they tell you the issue and give your team a chance to fix it before they tell the rest of the world?
For instance, it’s been shown that more customers these days like to find everything they need from a company on social media, rather than searching for or on the website. As Ben says in the interview:
“It’s easier to Tweet a brand a message rather than hunt for their phone number, place a call, find your wait through an IVR, and then wait in a queue before you have a chance to speak to someone.”
One of the platforms that have been around for quite some time, but is really just now starting to catch fire is Live Chat. This could be either on your website or a social media platform. The great thing about social media platforms is…they are most of the time relatively low cost with nothing to install. Even so, having a live chat on your website with real-time communication with your customers can add value beyond imagination.
Although live chat may require a step or two of AI to streamline it, your customers will gain more confidence in your brand when they know they can log in and get instant help from a live agent. Someone who cares and can empathize. A live chat operator, a good one, can handle two or three chats at once. A great one can handle three to four given the severity or complexity of the issues they are encountering.
Customers in 2022 want everything in an instant. Have a look at this blog post to learn more. Responsiveness and empathy are the current trends, and it doesn’t look like they will be going anywhere.
Customer Support Feedback
Don’t shy away from feedback, in fact, promote it! This can be beneficial in many ways, but giving the customer an outlet to vent and then responding quickly can diffuse their compulsion to take to social media. Nip it in the bid before it reaches their network, friends, or family. Keep in mind that the customer experience is a chance to make them do the marketing for you.
But the most beneficial role feedback can play when it comes to your customer support is by giving your customers a chance to tell you what they want. This feedback can be a great launchpad for you to be more proactive in upgrading.
Listen to your customers, see how their needs are changing. Then pull out those customer experience processes, dust them off and have a look at what can be upgraded. Speak to your front liners. They may have some great ideas that never crossed our minds.
More Ways For Proactive Support
There are so many ways to upgrade the customer experience, from adding more channels to extending hours of operation for customer service and support. Also, reviewing processes to make sure issues are resolved quickly and effortlessly can greatly benefit. Hiring individuals who can empathize and care about the customer journey is another game-changer. People who are simply passionate about giving amazing service and are satisfied with one thing — making customers happy. There are such career-minded support individuals out there…
Furthermore, it doesn’t have to be costly or break the bank to hire a staff whose passion is serving your customers. A staff who can bring to the table experience to make suggestions when they see gaps is well within your reach. Building a team with Telework PH can transform your customer experience and take a lot of the costs and pressure off of the in-house staff. Augment your current workforce with people who can work alongside them after hours, weekends, holidays, and other times your customers may be reaching out. By doing so, you’ll make sure that there is always someone there to respond quickly and with the skills needed to take care of their issues.
Building a team with us is more than just an answering service. That’s so old school.
Keep watching this blog and our podcast, TeleCastPH for more tips and ideas about the customer experience. We keep a close eye on the ever-evolving trends. I may even invite Ben on as a guest and tap on his energy and knowledge.
If you feel like this would be a great fit or are ready to explore, feel free to contact us and book a quick call to talk about the best options for you and your brand.