Customer Support – What’s New?
Customer support is the facade of a business. Customers are not familiar with your operations, they are not familiar with your finances, your logistics or how honest you are in your dealings or how passionate you are in providing the best product in the niche you are currently targeting. The only thing they will be exposed to, observe and judge your company on will be either the product or the customer service. With thousands of businesses competing with the same product in the business world, it all boils down to customer service.
There are two aspects of customer support — Customer experience (CX) and Customer Engagement (CE).
Customer Experience: It is the response of a customer to your product, your company because of the perception they have built of you. This includes physical, psychological and emotional response of the customer. This is a two way street. The factors of this reaction are the interaction with your product and with your customer service. This is what fuels the long time loyalty and the further propagation of your product in the customers’ own circles.
To understand it better, consider the moment when a customer receives your package and opens it for the first time. They then proceed to interact with it. The moment is a prime example of customer experience (CX). Was the customer happy? Were they disappointed? Did they like the product? Was it worth the money? How soon did you deliver? What was their reaction on your delivery time? Did they call for refund? Did they sound worried about the product? Confused? All these are the customer experience factors and these are what make the first and lasting impression on their minds.
Customer Engagement: Customer engagement is the total sum of the moments the customer has interacted with your product or your customer service. It is the sum of every mention your brand name had in their lives, offline, online and in front of them. It dictates the long term relationship between them and your brand name.
If the sum is positive overall, they will be happy with your product, loyal with your brand and will let other people know about the product. If it is not, they will most likely sever their connections with you and bad mouth you around the town and in their respective circles which will affect your brand in the long term.
With a lot of businesses competing for market share in the business world, there is little improvements which can be made in the product but what can be done is an improvement in the customer experience and by extension by customer engagement. This is why it is predicted by 2020 that customer service will be the biggest reason for customer retention or customer loyalty.
Lots of efforts are being done to find out new methods to judge the customer experience and customer engagement. One of these is the reception of feedback. A lot of customers are honest, kind hearted people who really want you to improve and they will be available to give back constructive feedback. This can only happen if you are willing to accept the feedback with open eyes and ears. Provide them with a method to get to you and they will oblige with arguments and reasons as to why you should change how things are going on in your business.
There is another method to find out about the customer experience. Customer support. Microsoft Dynamics 365 Customer Engagement has built in sentimental analysis which helps your agents know what mood are the customers in after interacting with your product. This includes the distinction of positive, negative and relating factors like angry or happy. Through the data collected from these interactions, you can get an accurate enough picture of how things are running on your side and how people are reacting to them on the other side.
It can be challenging to create an all positive customer feedback loop but you can always improve. Get into as many channels as you can through Omnichannel feature and get to the customer, listen to their reviews and let them be a part of your organization. This will make them a value assets to your company because not only will they be happy with your product but willing to guide you whenever you might want to test the waters with a new product.
And this method of feedback is a realistic as it can get. Instead of trying to manually push them into writing fake reviews so that they can get done with the multitude of notifications of feedback you are bombarding them with, they will be happy to help you out on their own free time.
Through the data collected from Customer Engagement, you can make a mental map of the current situation of your customers’ experience and how it can be made better. Building positive customer experiences increases customer engagement. It is hard work, but it is something that pays off through customer loyalty and increased revenue.
Acquiring a new customer is more expensive than retaining an existing customer. Focusing on the existing customer experience and deepening customer engagement is not only essential, it is the most cost-effective strategy for long term success of your business. Companies that create positive customer experiences, and design and execute an effective customer engagement strategy will fast track forward, leaving the competition behind.