Viewing every interaction as an opportunity ensures that we are always bringing our “A” game, and perpetually positioning ourselves for success. It ensures that every customer feels important, and that their personal needs are being met, thus creating a great experience for both parties.
So the big question then becomes “how do we ensure that this is the way each interaction is approached?” It takes a great attitude, continued focus on the customer, and the skills necessary to maximize each opportunity. Here are five things you can do to rally your business around your customers so you can turn every interaction into an opportunity.
1. Wow and celebrate your customers.
To build strong relationships with customers you need to impress them at every step with fast, empathetic service and quick case resolution – even for the most complicated issues. There are dozens of ways to show extra support. Provide extra visibility by giving away your products at trade shows or as employee gifts.
Also, mentor customers who need help in any business area, whether that may be marketing, sales, event management or anything else. Don’t just be in the business of selling your products. Be in the business of helping customers succeed.
2. Practice total company support.
To build a customer-centric company, have everyone in your company interact with customers on a regular basis. Start by training every employee at your small business to participate in customer service. Ideally, everyone from the CEO to the receptionist should be able to pitch in and help with customer support during busy times.
Customer service training should also be part of your on-boarding process and an ongoing part of every job. After all, customer service is the best way to learn about your customers and products. Even if learning about customer service isn’t currently part of your on-boarding process, it’s not too late.
3. Give everyone 360-degree customer views.
Today’s customers expect everyone in your company to know who they are, what they’ve ordered and whether they’ve had problems in the past. Not to mention what they said on Twitter last week.
When you connect all of your support channels and the apps you use to run your business, everyone can be “in the know” about customers. Support agents can see order histories, open opportunities and even shipping status. Sales representatives know when a customer needs help. Today’s cloud-computing solutions make it easy to integrate systems and share information, so everyone can be more productive and do a better job of building relationships.
4. Use technology to be more personal.
Many people worry that as technology becomes more sophisticated, the personalized touch will go by the wayside. Not true! If you use a customer-support solution that captures interactions from every channel in one place, you’ll know your customers wherever you meet them. And, if you get a solution that lets you automate repetitive tasks, you can free your representatives to craft personalized messages that build loyalty and reinforce your brand.
Encourage representatives to sign their own names, to put a “face” on the communication. In today’s business, a personal touch is not just for top customers, it’s for everyone.
5. Make support part of your experience.
Start simply by creating a support team that reflects your personality and brand. You can make it even easier for customers when you make it possible for them to stay within your product when they need help. Add support-team links to relevant pages on your site. If there’s some way that you can see when customers are having trouble, reach out before they even have a chance to put it on social media.
Be ready to put customer service at the center of everything you do. Start now and start turning every support interaction into an opportunity for customer happiness.