( Oh no i don’t wanna go there ) I always have this feeling for the customer service or customer support team reactions, this used to be the case few years back, when you had only phone lines for customer care or you personally visit the care center. Here is a scenario, “ you buy a Smartphone and one day you need some support as there are some issues with the handset. You go and call the free customer care line, they either help you impressively or disappoint you miserably”. Now the case is totally different and communication channels have evolved to several and more open and faster for people to use and reach out through. You go on Twitter and send a request to the Brand and you don’t have 2 hours to wait for a reply or 24 hours to get a care line appointment. So how should brand respond and what will happen to the quality and customer feedback, and WOM that goes usually after the service is provided? Today people are into social and mobile digital channels, which mean faster and more transparent. A customer (Sarah) today can comeback and interact with the brand using more than 10 digital and traditional touch points looking for answers and help. If this is happening with your brand already and you don’t leverage that for more engagement and intelligence, then you are missing a lot. Plus what you know about her is not so valuable to you, then you are wasting a lot of opportunities for retention and sales. A lot of data can be collected on Sarah’s behavior using the brand services and communication channels, this will help you understand her more and help her faster and better , which ultimately means more sales and better retention on the long run. Here are 7 Tips that will help you structure better visibility and build better relationships over time to sell and engage more.
- Measure Sarah’s satisfaction in each and every communication channel she uses to talk to you. To be able to categories and sort clients based on their buying behavior, average spend, channel preference , etc.
- Communicate regularly with Sarah utilizing what you know about her, in terms of content preference, channel preference, and context preference, to ensure deeper engagement and anticipation which ultimately increases her consumption for your content.
- Sarah is using your product and services to talk to you most of the times , she is loyal. You need to celebrate her from time to time and surprise her with very very very personalized messages and ideas.
- Create a referral engine for Sarah to recommend her friends and tell them about your brand. It is also important to combine that with a scoring system that calculates the number of referrals vs sales and engagements, to provide incentives for the active ones encouraging them to share more.
- Create virtual groups for Sarah’s network sorted by common preferences and interest pockets as well. To make sure you have cohesive clients/partners groups that can engage more and build longer relationships.
- Extend the network effect using social graph in Facebook, twitter, G+ and others if possible to grow the social network impact on sales and intelligence.
- Build a gamification platform that leverages the data you know on Sarah and other clients. That will create deeper engagements and extend the experience to be more exciting and life changing in a way. As she will feel that she is part of something big and interesting. Because she will be upgraded based on her progress in the big game using more services and products from your brand.
These are ideas that will help you on the long run for sustainable and scalable marketing and sales platform for your brand. Yet they cannot work without full buy in from stakeholders in your business and alignment from company departments. Bringing the idea of reducing Advertising spend on the long run will make it easier to pitch such platforms for stakeholders usually. Are you doing any of the 7 ideas above already?