Offering your customers quick and efficient service is likely to win their satisfaction. But what happens when your brand goes the extra mile, perhaps by answering a question before it is asked or making an unexpected gesture of gratitude? When your service turns proactive, satisfaction turns into awe. By showing customers that you appreciate their business and care about saving them trouble, you establish a human connection that wins their trust and loyalty. According to Frost and Sullivan, 73% of customers who were contacted proactively and had a positive experience with the agent felt a positive change in their perception toward the company. Here are five ways to impress your customers by giving them the service they didn’t even know they wanted.
Busy modern-day life makes it hard for customers to keep track of everything they might want from your company. Not everyone remembers when a payment is due or when a sales event may begin. So why not send them gentle reminders a few weeks in advance? For example, retail brands may send information about holiday sales events and offer special services such as gift wrapping. Airlines might send information about upcoming flights and offer early check-in. Banks may also send monthly reminders about payments. By anticipating your customers’ needs, you can ensure that they never miss an important deadline or event.
What is one way to stay proactive? Help customers save time and eliminate the need to speak with you at all. To start, make sure your website offers detailed answers to frequently asked questions. Artificial intelligence can also assist you with tasks. Chatbots can answer simple customer questions and help with purchases. AI may also be used to power your IVR system, enabling customers find quick answers or routing them to agents when human assistance is needed.
There are many ways to stay a step ahead of customers during a service interaction. For example, if a customer wants to know how to renew a subscription, offer to do it for him. If he is unhappy because of a technical problem, make a goodwill gesture on behalf of the brand. By saving customers effort and showing empathy, you will win their loyalty for the long-term.
If your company anticipates a problem that will affect service, be sure to let customers know about it. Telling them in advance increases the chance that they will empathize with you and trust you to offer a solution. If your website is scheduled for maintenance, let them know. If flights are delayed or delivery times have been postponed, give customers a chance to reorganize their schedules. As much as possible, offer customers something to compensate for the inconvenience, such as extra service staff on channels in service or a voucher to redeem at the time of the next purchase.
It’s always a good idea to check in with customers to learn how your brand might serve them better. While you do not want to hassle them regularly with phone calls, it’s perfectly fine to send surveys after a service interaction on the channel of contact. Make sure to keep the surveys short, and follow up quickly when details are still fresh. Periodic surveys accompanied by a small voucher are also excellent for keeping up with customers year-round. If a customer has experienced a long and frustrating service issue, it may be appropriate to follow up with a call to make sure everything is going well. Frost and Sullivan states that 87% of customers form a positive image of companies that make follow-up calls. Proactive customer service sends the message that you care about your customers. By putting their needs first and working hard to make their experiences as seamless as possible, don’t be surprised if they become your biggest fans.
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