Customer experience / Unsplash

The way interactions make us feel, whether positive or negative, live long in our memories.

This is especially the case for interactions between businesses and customers, as given today’s competitive market, failing to form a strong customer voice can be detrimental to the business in the long run.

Many companies have sought to improve their customer experience, as even the smallest of changes can reduce customer churn, increase customer spending, and consequently, generate a sharp upturn in revenue.

While the ultimate sign of a below-par customer experience is not seeing clients return, there are other telltale signs that can emerge, such as a drop in customer satisfaction ratings and a poor word-of-mouth reputation. Negative experiences are more likely to be shared than positive ones, and given how easy it is to take to social media and vent about everything, it is of utmost importance for business leaders to give priority to their clientele.

Therefore, here are four ways business leaders can foster a company culture that is built on providing a seamless and consistent customer experience.

1) Define the company’s approach

First of all, a business leader has to clearly sketch out the company’s approach and goals of each interaction a customer service representative has with customers.

Are they providing sales support, technical support, or overall product information?

Business leaders also need to clarify the differences between using a word or phrase and an alternative one. One example is, instead of saying “I can’t help you with that”, representatives can say: “Good question. I would be more than happy to do some research to find out which member of our team would be the best to help out.”

Business leaders must encourage representatives to delve into past interactions, such as chat archives and sent emails to evaluate the type of interactions they had and assess whether they could have approached certain queries differently.

2) Ensure your language fits with the company’s brand

Business leaders also need to decide whether the language being used aligns with the image that they want the company to have.

This includes analysing if slang or emojis should be used, and whether there are any particular terms that they do not want the company’s brand to be associated with.

Business leaders have to create a glossary of terms for their employees to use when they interact with customers, thus making sure that each representative is pulling on the same end of the rope and is following communication standards.

Failing to be consistent in this aspect will hinder the relationship customers have with the company, as they will feel that they are speaking to a totally different organisation each time they make contact.

Customers need to feel welcome, and therefore a hospitable service which is selfless, genuine, and puts the clients at the forefront of interactions is vital.

3) Be accessible

In today’s increasingly digital world, businesses need to meet customers where they are by expanding their online presence to the platforms that are typically used by clients and adjusting the company’s strategy accordingly.

Should Facebook or Instagram be the platforms customers reach out to the company, then business leaders have to guide their representatives to ensure that they can assist them effectively through comments or direct messages, depending on the questions raised.

The company needs to have open channels for communication with customers, and that service has to be tailored to suit each platform while still aligning with the company’s brand image.

4) Form a knowledge base

Lastly, business leaders have to form a knowledge base, a system used to document information about processes and procedures that the company uses. This can act as a self-serve online library of information about the company’s products, services and departments.

A knowledge base can be used to record standard response expectations for your representatives to reference and look out for whenever they are in contact with a customer.

This includes a list of articles, frequently asked questions, picture guides, and troubleshooting steps, all of which can serve as ways to answer common questions customers may have. Aside from helping customers more directly, this also reduces the need for them to contact customer support, and in turn alleviating some of the pressure off representatives.

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