Marketers are sheep… let’s face it. They shy away from confrontation and nestle into their comfort zone because it is not only a proven method, but one traditionally has yielded highest results. The number of marketers eager to join the herd grows greater everyday we see another negative report on our economy. ‘herd’ marketers are afraid to jump out of the norm and create customer service experiences that create brand evangelists. Instead of leading the pack and innovative new and inventive ways to show your customers, your product is superior, you rely on traditional mindsets and ‘word of mouth’. While word of mouth has long been the fabled most successful form of marketing, it pales in comparison to customer service. Customer service creates satisfied customers, who feel the need to sing your brands praises, who then generate buzz, which then creates word of mouth and viral campaigns. Word of mouth is a product of customer service…not vice versa.
Will you leave the herd behind?
The key to positive customer service in the new age is transparency. Creating an environment where customers feel comfortable to to express their positive and negative thoughts, as well as provide them a venue free from judgement in a location where their needs will be met. This is the key to determining true customer service. Use your negative comments as a medium to continuous product development and enhancement. This negative customer experience can provide you with the competitive advantage that your competition is missing out on because they are nestled in the herd. Companies not confident enough in their products and not confident enough in their support staff that they stifle themselves inside a box, secure from negative chatter, are the ones hemorrhaging customer loyalty. Your product is your medium to connect to your customers. you develop your product to satisfy a potential customer need, but without knowing the true needs of your customers, you are not truly satisfying their needs to the point of evangelism are you?
Tools to maximize customer service are everywhere. Social media and live chat being 2 of those options. But do not use your customer service channels and keep them stuffed into archives. Present these conversations, display them on your website, social media channels, and press releases. Confidence in your customer service efforts adds a level of confidence in your brand. products chasing competitors with higher market share can utilize this technique to not only showcase your personalization, but present your product as the superior brand, highlighted by your customer service.
Will you join the herd and only showcase your positive experiences, or will you use your negative experiences as a means of transparency and not a weakness. This is where true evangelists are built.
Negative experiences build more efficient product development.