As technology has advanced, specifically in the 21st century, your clients’ expectations for customer service have also advanced. Businesses have more opportunities than ever before to engage with customers and for their customers to engage with them. Any company wanting to stay relevant to their clientele needs to make sure they are investing the time and resources necessary in this area of their business.
Proactive Customer Service
One of the newest ways companies are interacting with customers is through proactive customer service. Proactive customer service is used when a company becomes aware of a problem and wants to get the word out to customers. Often times, companies will send out a message via their social media or email platforms to accomplish this goal. Using these platforms, you may be able to cut off customer complaints “at the pass” instead of waiting for them to show up in your inbox or on your Facebook page. There is a second opportunity for proactive customer service by way of coupons or apology notes sent through the mail. As business owners, we’re in a much better position, via blending old and new customer service methods, to be proactive in serving our customers and making them feel appreciated.
Allowing Immediate Feedback
Today’s customer can give more immediate feedback than ever before. A customer who eats at a restaurant can leave an online review before they even leave the table. This means that companies need to go the extra mile to ensure every customer is happy with the product or service provided. With all of the different mediums of communication today, one unhappy customer can appear very influential to current and potential customers. One really effective method of capturing immediate feedback is through evaluation forms provided at the point of sale or service. Providing customers with feedback cards gives them the opportunity to praise (or rebuke) your products/services, while simultaneously providing you with invaluable real-time feedback.
Live Help Applications
One area of opportunity for many companies is a live help option on their website. There are several benefits to adding this feature. Many studies show that customers are not fans of the typical call center customer service experience. A customer with a question or problem is much more likely to have a positive experience with someone over the live help medium on a website. This technology allows the customer to type out his or her question and have it answered by a customer service person from the company in real time. There are also a few web applications that can capture the client’s message even when there isn’t a customer service agent available at that moment.
Social media has exploded over the last couple of years. There are so many new platforms that it’s almost too many to count. But, with the many platforms comes many different ways you can use this to your advantage. Businesses who want to show they care about customers can encourage customers to engage via these platforms. Each platform provides your business with the means to learn more about your customer and gives you ammunition for additional marketing campaigns. You can use your social engagement as a means to derive your print marketing campaigns – listen, learn, plan & repeat.
When all is said and done, business owners will find that the advances in technology over the past 50 years have done much to improve your ability to provide excellent customer experiences. It is only a matter of seeing each change and addition as an opportunity. Every improvement we’ve listed above is an opportunity for your company to learn more about your customer so that you can provide better and more strategic customer service. Combining these advances with strategic print marketing will not only improve your current customer service, but will increase the number of customers coming through your door.