Tips for Increasing Customer Loyalty in the 'Age of Experience'

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Customer Service Operations

Customers want more than products and companies must deliver more than goods. To improve customer experiences, organizations should consider the following:

Initiate proactive customer service efforts: Anticipate needs and make outbound efforts to the customer. These greatly differentiated, high-touch services reinforce brand identity and customer value proposition. Gain a competitive advantage by initiating proactive customer service to delight customers with convenient, useful information at their moments of greatest need.

Move to recentralization: For 10 years, businesses have aggressively been chasing new channels and layering them on operationally, trying to engineer to the lowest cost to serve. However, each interaction across channels and over time must be consistent, positive and on target with a company's brand promise. Learn to run a thread through all channels and experiences by centralizing with omni-channel strategies.

Fully enable self-support: Fully enable self-support: Utilize all channels, from the web to advanced IVR applications and visual IVRs, to provide low-cost personalized multichannel self-service 24/7. Technologies such as speech recognition and personalization can help provide a more natural, effective, and less frustrating interaction than traditional touch-tone systems.

In the ongoing battle for market share, brands pore over metrics and tweak strategies to increase customer loyalty. The stakes are high, customer acquisition costs are expensive, and most businesses can't afford to lose sales to competitors. With prices commoditized in many industries, today's battleground is centered squarely on customer experiences.

Data from an American Express Service Study shows that excellent customer experiences are the key to winning a customer's heart – literally speaking. More than 1,500 consumers were tested under laboratory conditions, and greater than 60 percent felt their heart rate increase when thinking about a great customer experience. For more than 50 percent of the group, receiving great service triggered the same cerebral reactions as love.

The realities of business introduce challenges to brands that are working hard to stir these kinds of emotions. The continued pressure on cost, customer expectations, rising complexity and decreasing cycle-time make it difficult to provide outstanding experiences while maintaining margins. However, according to Sean Erickson, EVP, chief marketing and infrastructure officer, Sitel, customer experiences can be improved through a number of methods including technology and innovation, customer service operations, employee management and global sourcing.


Related Topics : Vulnerabilities and Patches, Resellers, Broadcom, Broadband Services, Supercomputing

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