Whether you are an Advisor, an MGA, or an Insurer, customer service is about the customer’s every interaction during their journey with your brand. Traditionally, customer service was perceived as a service offered after the customer had reached out with a complaint or a query, for instance, about a product. Often these interactions happened within a set timeframe via traditional media – letters or phone calls. However, most consumer transactions now occur digitally and directly impact consumer behavior and expectations. With this shift, the spectrum of customer service has broadened to incorporate every customer touchpoint. Keeping a finger on the pulse of customer satisfaction wherever customers meet the brand is ideal. Indeed, brands that include customer service in their marketing strategy have demonstrated customer satisfaction.
Today, customers hold the power of a brand’s reputation/perception at their fingertips. The move from traditional to digital platforms has created multiple spaces for consumer opinions and brand reviews. Even though automation is a core driver in optimizing customer experience services across industries, it is essential to consider the end-to-end experience of all customers. Keep both older and younger generations in mind when reflecting on customer service options. Maintain the platforms that work for the designated consumer age group and consider these consumers’ comfort level with technology.
As much as the future slants sharply toward an AI takeover, the human element remains vital in customer service. Current innovation leaves room for technological errors, which need solutioning by human beings. The best solution is thus a combination of automation and human factors to elevate the customer service experience.
Why You Should Care
Bad customer experience leaves a bad taste, leading to poor reviews damaging a brand's reputation among existing and potential customers. Online, unhappy feedback is typically public, and its audience will pay attention to the company’s reaction to the customer’s dissatisfaction. When reviews are sent offline, the company is often made aware via whichever method of contact is available, but they are also made aware by the network of the slighted customer – through word of mouth. Whether the reviews are left offline or online, the effect remains the same – a loss of positive perception for the brand.
On the other hand, referrals, based on positive customer experiences, are one of the strongest ways to build loyalty to a brand. As an Advisor in the life insurance industry, building a network of new clients greatly depends on relationship management with existing clients. Having a satisfied portfolio of customers is great, but how will your network grow if clients do not express their satisfaction? Encourage feedback by checking in regularly during the transaction process. That way, sending a customer satisfaction survey post-transaction will be consistent with the relationship. Most importantly, a positive public review should cause an uptick in both warm and hot leads.
Benefits of Digital Customer Service
Digital and social platforms are where the younger generations live. There are several main social media platforms, and new ones are created daily. However, it is recommended to have a brand presence on the platform that suits your brand’s personality and purpose and reaches your targeted demography. A few of the major players include LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. Before going live in any of these spaces, ensure a strategy is in place to exchange resolutive interactions with customers as promptly as they are received. Agility and quick turnaround are as crucial to today’s customer as a positive attitude and tone. Some benefits of extending customer service to the digital space include:
- Target and reach the desired audience
- Differentiate brand from the competition
- Increase positive brand perception
- Grow loyalty and referrals
As the landscape of consumer needs and behaviors rapidly evolves, organizations must adapt their customer service tactics at a similar pace. An annual review and a rethink of customer service practices are key to maintaining best practices and ensuring that a brand stands out competitively.
What digital customer service tips have helped your business? Please share with us in the comments.
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