Yes, I rationally know that this is computer program that picked up my information from my profile and automatically pushed this to me. What made this a delightful customer experience for me was the surprise. And that someone at Google recognized that inner child in all of us, the one who likes to be surprised on our birthday.
Our customers are no different. Personalized service isn't always easy on the phone so here are 5 places that you can train your call center reps to easily personalize your calls:
- Use your customer's name. That seems obvious doesn't it? But for some unexplainable reason customer service reps resist using customer names. In her LinkedIn post Linda Coles explains why using a customer's name is so important. It makes your customer pay attention. If you don't know how to pronounce a name, ask. I always appreciate that someone cares enough to wonder about my name, it makes me feel special.
- Recognize good customers. I once worked with a customer service manager who asked his representatives to say "I see you've been a customer with us for 7 years, I'd really like to thank you for your business." before they started problem resolution steps. You could virtually see those upset customers take a step back. The fact that the representative knew they were a good customer led that customer to believe that they were going to receive better service than they believed when they dialed the phone number.
- Take the CANNED out of canned email responses. We all know I'm a super fan of canned responses to emails, but that doesn't mean impersonal! (Why? See my blog on canned email responses.) In addition to always using the customer's name, start the email with a personalized note. The best way is to briefly paraphrase the key points your customer shared so they know you are solving THEIR problem. Google isn't the only one who can be creative, you can create a dozen fill in the blank canned sentences that can be plugged in to your responses.
- Use customer history. Most representatives have access to customer history, use it! Ask your customer if the last problem they reported was resolved to their satisfaction in your call closing: "While I have you on the phone Sandy, I noticed you requested a replacement order last month. Has that been taken care of to your satisfaction?" What a great opportunity for customer retention!
- Hmmm... It's my birthday. Why don't you fill in number 5 for me so I can get on with my day of "not working"!
Please share a customer service personalization with us. I'll consolidate and post in a future blog. Now, on to my day.