5 Ways to Improve Communication with Customers
There are many different ways companies interact with customers. Email, phone, live chat, social media – every interaction is important, and knowing how to communicate well with your customers will have a major impact on creating a positive image for your company.
Talk like a human
It may seem self-explanatory, but it’s common for people to slip into a “customer service voice” when communicating with customers. In many situations, however, it’s perfectly fine and actually better to use more casual language. This is a great way to help build an emotional connection with your customers. Especially on social media, overly professional language sounds cold and detached. Of course it’s important to use your best judgement to determine when to keep things more professional and when it’s okay to be a little more informal, and factors such as your industry and your company’s image should be considered. But even when things need to be more serious, be mindful of the language you’re using. Avoid using clichés and business jargon, and keep things simple and straightforward.
Be kind and understanding
Again, this one may seem obvious, but its importance really can’t be overemphasized. If you’re having a bad day, be careful not to let your mood affect your interactions with customers. If a customer is being rude or seems unfriendly, remember that you don’t know what’s going on in their life and show empathy when communicating with them. Making their experience of interacting with you a positive one can make a big difference in their overall opinion of your company.
Make it as painless as possible
At some point in their lives, everyone has had a frustrating customer service experience. Maybe you’ve had a call transferred to a half dozen people before someone could finally help you, or perhaps you’ve received a dismissive email that didn’t even address your problem. Try to make it as simple as possible for customers to reach out to you when they need help or have questions.
For example, try to help customers on whatever platform they used to reach out to you. If they send you a message on your Facebook page, it’s much easier for the customer if you can provide them assistance via Facebook message than if you give them a phone number to call. Obviously this won’t be possible for every situation, but keeping the process as simple as possible will go a long way toward helping your customers.
Ask for feedback
Asking customers for feedback is a great way to address issues you may not have found out about otherwise, and to prevent potential problems from ever arising. It also lets you find out what customers like most about your product or service, and may even give you ideas for new ones. However, it’s important to remember to actually act on feedback once you’ve received it, or at least take it into consideration. Even if it’s not something you plan to change, understanding where customers are coming from and what their opinions are will help you to provide better service in the future. Offering surveys is a popular way to find out what customers are thinking. Just make sure you’re not bombarding customers with them too frequently, or it might become irritating.
Expressing to your customers that you’re thankful for their business goes a long way toward building a loyal customer base. Whether it’s through grand gestures like gifts or giveaways or something as simple as a thank you note, showing customers and clients that you appreciate them leaves a lasting positive impression. Don’t forget to thank them for the little things, too, such as being patient during a delay in service, or for taking the time to provide feedback. Everyone likes to feel seen and appreciated, and your customers are no different.
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