Wednesday, August 17, 2016

Being a Leader from ANY position in the contact center [Part 2 of 3]

By: Amayea Maat

Hello again!  In part 1 of this article we looked at some key distinctions;  I asked you to consider that being a leader included the following:
  • Someone who brings others along with them (inclusive)
  • Someone who sees a need, and fills it – without waiting to be directed or taken care of by someone else
  • Someone who goes where they have never gone before even when they do not know how
         o Continuously learning and growing
  • Someone who leaves themselves, others, and situations in a better place than what they were found

Now, consider that as the leader of your life, you have a say in how things go. You are fully responsible for your experience in life, and for being the leader of your life! That is a good and not so good scenario.

What is the good news? If you don’t like how something is going you are the one who can make choices and take actions to improve. The not so good news is that ONLY YOU can do this for your life. It is not anyone's responsibility, nor can anyone do it for you.

Let’s look at this from the space of being in a contact center, starting with the most important people in the contact center, the front line. As a front line representative you may think that you cannot make a difference other than one client at a time. While this is by and large the most important thing that you could do, it is not the end of what you can offer. It is just the beginning.

You are the leading indicator of the customer experience. You know why customers are contacting your company. You are the one who notice trends, and what could be improved. You are also able to provide insight most aren't aware of.

Being able to extrapolate what the impact is on the customer and on the company is key. The front line has access to the gold!! Share your insights with supervisors. In this was, you are leading the effort towards improvement!

The front line supervisor has direct knowledge of c
ustomer facing issues,

roadblocks that hinder excellent service, and the challenges of front line staff.  With this understanding, they determine what measures can be taken to. They are the change makers and innovators!

As front line agents and supervisors, you are the catalyst of change. Utilize your knowledge, resources, and influence in the following ways: 

  1. Assume the role change-maker by advocating for your customers, employees, and company
  2. Gather data and properly analyze it 
  3. Tell the story of the data 

The Gold is at your fingertips….what are YOU GOING TO DO ABOUT IT??

#CustServ #QOTD

Thursday, August 4, 2016

8 Ways to Win More Loyal Customers with a Personal Touch

By: Maria Lebed

Winning loyal customers does not necessarily take huge marketing budgets. When it comes to customer loyalty, it’s small gestures that get appreciated the most and remembered.

Adding a simple personal touch to every interaction you have with your customers has a big impact on how they perceive your brand.

Loyal customers are a very important asset of any business. As statistical facts prove, up to 15% of a company’s most loyal customers account for 55-70% of the company’s total sales. The numbers are quite impressive.

Let’s take a look at how you can win greater customer loyalty with a few small personalized gestures.

Notify your clients when a product they searched for is available in stock

It is common practice for many ecommerce buyers to browse different websites, compare products, features and pricing before making the final buying decision. Sometimes after looking at the details they decided to buy from your site, and only later noticed that the product they needed was out of stock. That’s when the option to be notified of product availability comes in really handy. They may not be pressed for time with this purchase and opt-in for notification, instead of having to return to your site to check your updates. This will save your potential customers a lot of time and they will remember your website for convenience.

Customize your landing pages based on the customer’s history of interactions with your website

For example, if the customer is returning to your website more than once, give them a welcome message and offer product suggestions based on what they browsed for or purchased from you before.

If they are coming to your website from an email link in which you made a special offer to them, gave discount coupon or notified them of new products, acknowledge this by saying “thank you” for reading your email and welcome them back to the site.

Offer your customers what they like

Encourage your customers to share their tastes and preferences by asking them to take surveys. Their feedback will allow you to deliver a more personalized and memorable user experience.

Another way of personalizing your ecommerce interactions is to allow the users to customize their subscription settings. They should be able to select what type of content and product offers they wish to receive from your company. This will make sure that you are delivering information which is of interest to them.

Send your customers a post card

Stone age, you say? I don’t agree. The effect that such a personal gesture has is proportionate to the level of effort that it takes to make it. It does take time to choose, to sign and mail a card, but it takes a rare human being to ignore or forget such a nice and personal outreach. Especially in modern times as less and less companies are doing it, it’s a good way to stand out and be remembered.

Give your customers’ a birthday present

A birthday is a great cause to connect with your clients. Send them a discount coupon or some present. For example, for my birthday I received from one company a link to a bookstore in which I could select and download a free ebook. I think it was a nice gesture and surely it made me remember this company, as well as their partner bookstore, because I found and saved a book which was interesting and useful to me.

Include a hand-written note if you are shipping an item to a customer

Having received a few of these myself, I find them to be a really warm gesture. It always leaves an impression in my memory. What can you write in such a note? It could be something very simple, like “I hope you are having a great day today” with a smile. Or you can reference a past conversation with a client if it feels relevant.

Another good idea is to include your business card in your shipment, or perhaps a few business cards or coupons from your partners whose products/services are relevant to your customer’s purchase.

Chat with your customers online

Adding a live chat widget to your website allows you to address customers’ issues instantly and gather more information about them.

For example, live chat tools with a real-time visitor monitoring feature show you where the customer has come from, how much time he or she spent on your website, what pages and for how long they viewed etc. With so much information on hand you can provide much more efficient help to them in less time. It also helps to strengthen your relationship with customers.

Send transactional follow-up emails

You can send a post-purchase email to your customer and thank them for shopping with you. It is good to personalize your messages based on the information about the customer available to you.

For example, if the customer mentioned in a live chat or phone conversation with you that they are buying a product for their child, you can ask in your email how their child enjoyed the product. In most cases some personal customer information will be available to you to create a personal touch.

Additionally, you can include other personalized product recommendations based on the purchase transaction.

I hope this short list have given you some ideas to ponder over and consider incorporating in your business. I am sure you already have your own strategy for winning the loyalty of your customers.

Maria Lebed is a customer service representative and writer at Provide Support Live Chat. She's been working in the front line for more than 7 years, gaining experience and learning. Daily observation of interactions with customers inspired her to start sharing her experiences. 

Maria believe that one can never get perfect in customer service, but one can always try and do one’s best and be creative about it.

Follow Maria on Twitter and LinkedIn

#CustServ #QOTD