How to Be a Customer Service UnicornThe only thing that a customer remembers more than a bad customer service experience is an amazing one. When the average hold time across all sized businesses is 56 seconds—and 15% of callers hang up right around 40 seconds—it’s easy to fall in with the crowd and stick to that safe average. Meanwhile, 15% of your customers—and potential prospects—hung up the phone already and possibly called your competitor. To really be successful with customer service, you should strive to be a unicorn: rare and magical. Think about it—if you ever rode a unicorn, could you ever go back to a plain old horse? Here are some tips.
Trim Down Your Hold Times
As mentioned above, the average hold time is 56 seconds. This may not seem too bad, but seconds can stretch into hours when you’re waiting on hold—especially if you have a bone to pick with the company you’re calling. The first step to trimming down your hold times is setting up a virtual call center. The ability to route calls to any agent anywhere on any phone—including cell phones and Skype—can cut down hold times dramatically and makes for happier customers.
Use Social Media
For non-critical customer questions—and occasionally complaints—social media is your best bet. While customer inquiries are public, your responses are also: it enables you to really go all-out in forming helpful responses and showcase your customer service skills to the world. Many companies have social media presences0 but don’t actually engage with their customers and fans on those platforms: if you do, it will set you even further apart from the competition.
Get Caller Info Before They Connect With Your Rep
Whether it’s with an IVR that collects relevant information from the caller before they are transferred to a rep or designated call tracking numbers for different customer service issues—billing, tech support, etc.—find a way for your rep to already have some information about your caller and their issue before the customer ever gets connected. There’s nothing more magical than connecting with a rep only to find that they already know your name, account number, etc. and you can jump straight into getting your problem resolved. That’s the kind of customer service that stays with you.
Make It Easy for Callers By Automating the Basics with Self-Service
Sometimes customers want the ability to call, but they don’t want to talk. They just want to get information themselves and go. Does that make sense? If what the customer wants is to check a balance or find out what time you close, make it easy for callers to get that information themselves without having to wait on hold for a rep. Enable callers to get the basic information they need with little hassle. Convenience really is key. Make it easy for them to get what they need, and they’ll keep coming back.
Are you feeling sparkly yet? These tips are by no means magic, but you’d be surprised what a difference these small things make to customers who are used to ornery ponies. Don’t be an ornery pony. Be a unicorn. Now get out there and sparkle.
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