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5 Ways to Improve Your Customer Service

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5 Ways to Improve Your Customer Service

Providing a great customer experience can put your business ahead of the pack. It doesn’t always seem like the most important part of a business venture, but when you look at it from the perspective of the clients and customers – there couldn’t be anything of greater importance.

Customer service is the face your business presents to the world. It should do its very best, not only in terms of helping the clients but also when it comes to sharing the vision of your company.

Know the customersKnow the customers

Before you can provide any kind of customer service, you need to have a clear understanding of who your customers are. This is more than just a clear marketing strategy – it’s actually a proper communication between the company and those who use its services.

There are numerous ways to do this – users leave a trail online and the companies should harvest as much of that information as they can in order to know more about the users. It should go beyond just demographics. The rest of the online activities, such as the pages they like and the movies they watch, give you a clearer image of the interest and the aesthetic of your clients.

Go mobile

Providing the support in the form of an app gives you the ability to be always present in the lives of your clients and customers and to interact with them on a more personal device, like a phone or a tablet. All of this also means that the support could use the location and the personal information of your clients to be better tailored to their needs. The information you gather this way is also more personal and relevant than the one you get when using the computer.

The employees matter

With the rise of chat bots and app metrics, the talk of customer services has mostly become the same as talking about technology. This is plain wrong. The focus must remain on the human interaction because that’s something that can’t be replaced. It’s imperative for the business to offer training for its customer service employees. While the training should include how to use new technology, there’s nothing that can beat “thank you” and “have a nice day”. Try to find employees that enjoy interacting with people and make your business friendlier.

Notice the feedback

Create a channel through which the customers can comment and complain about your customer services. While the channel shouldn’t always be public because it isn’t good PR, you should provide it to your customers in some form. The customers often complain without going through the proper procedure or trying all the options available. However, it’s still important to monitor the feedback and react on it when you see that there’s a reason for it. That way, the customers know you care and the employees know they are being supervised.

Appointment remindersAppointment reminders

Appointment reminders are especially important in the healthcare industry because sticking to schedules can really make a difference for your health. Those who work in the field say that nothing is as effective as having an SMS appointment reminder system. E-mails don’t get the same response rate and social media doesn’t have the same gravitas. The system should be adaptable to fit the workflow of your company and the type of business that you run. It’s also important to integrate it into your overall managerial system.

A good customer service makes for happy customers and this should always be your top priority. Focus both on the people and on the tech behind it and the results will show.

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Business

Advantages and Disadvantages of Outsourcing Your Digital Marketing

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In the hyper-connected world that we live in today, it’s a common occurrence for a smaller business to team up with other agencies in order to provide a full service. This gives them an opportunity to focus on their core tasks and keeps the business model quite simple. One of the most outsourced tasks (alongside IT, HR and customer support) is digital marketing. Now, digital marketing is an umbrella term, which means that you can still outsource a part of your marketing-related tasks while performing other tasks on your own. Regardless of what choice you make, there are advantages and downsides. Here are some of them.

1.      Advantage: Getting the results much faster

The first thing you should understand about your digital marketing is the fact that you’ll be getting the results much faster than if you were to make an in-house team. The latter may take a long time to pull off, due to the fact that you need to hire staff, buy hardware and pay for software licenses, organize the team and draft a strategy on your own. Keep in mind that this is how long it takes without you waiting for the team to become experienced enough. Once you add this into the mix and realize that time is, indeed, a finite resource, you’ll realize that outsourcing gets you results much faster.

2.      Disadvantage: Losing touch with your brand

The problem with outsourcing is that you’re losing personal touch with what your brand is all about. Sure, you know the starting point and you’re aware of the direction you want your brand to take, but you can never really know how your business is going to evolve over the course of time. Therefore, it wouldn’t be impossible for you to lose touch with your brand. In time, you might have trouble understanding what your organization is all about, which is about as bad as it gets.

3.      Advantage: Experts perform specialized tasks

Some aspects of your digital marketing are fairly simple and easy to pull off as a DIY project. Others, nonetheless, may require skill, experience and technical prowess in the field. Add to this the need for specialized tools and years of experience using it and you might just get the full picture. Sometimes, it’s not just about the fact that you couldn’t do it. It’s about the fact that you couldn’t do it as effectively as an expert could. A perfect example of this is the art of social media analytics, which lays as the basis of your future digital marketing strategy. A slight misinterpretation here could lose you a small fortune in the future, which is why it’s best left to experts.

4.      Disadvantage: Changing partners

Even if you’re happy with the choice that you’ve made when outsourcing, not a lot of partnerships go the distance. You might soon be forced to change partners for several reasons. For instance, even though you’re satisfied with the service they’re providing, your business has ever-growing digital marketing needs that they can’t keep up with. Other than this, a mistake (a partnership ending one), could happen on both ends, which is why they might be the ones to cancel the collaboration. Either way, switching to a new partner might be an occurrence that your business, your brand and your public image might come to suffer for.

advantage

5.      Advantage: Simplicity

The last thing you need to understand is the fact that the simplicity of your business operation plays a huge factor when it comes to your chance of success. This is especially true for inexperienced or first-time entrepreneurs. The more complex your business structure is, the bigger the chance is that something will go horribly wrong.

Moreover, by outsourcing tasks that you’re ill-equipped to handle, you’ll get your hands free to focus on those tasks that you do know quite a bit about. Let’s be realistic, all the areas that are usually outsourced are additions to your business but your ability to provide a service or sell a product serve as a core of your business model. Put simply, outsourcing will help you set your priorities straight.

Conclusion

As you can see, some of the above-listed advantages and disadvantages are universally true for outsourcing, in general, regardless if it’s digital marketing that we’re talking about. On the other hand, it’s also one of the areas of your business that you’re the most likely to outsource, which is why we felt obliged to go into the specifics, where it was necessary. The choice is up to you but now, at least, you know what you’re up against.

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Social media giants, Facebook urges publishers to leverage creative content for improved revenue

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Social media giants, Facebook, has called on publishers to leverage on creative content for better revenue generation.

Facebook’s Strategic Media Partnerships Manager for Sub Sahara Africa, Jocelyn Muhutu-Remy, made the call while speaking at a session tagged ‘Art of monetizing good storytelling through the social media’ hosted by The Guardian during the Social Media Week at Victoria Island, Lagos.


Muhutu-Remy urged social media publishers to avoid clustering on already competitive content publishings.

“Propose what is different and unique to you. It is not about the followers you have but the uniqueness of your content. I advise starting by promoting your page using your location to reduce pay.”

Muhutu-Remy cited an example of a publisher on Instagram whose main contents were on natural hair care and maintenance for women and urged social media publishers to follow suit.

She added that brands would only be attracted and convinced to partner and invest in a publisher whose contents is specific and specialized.

Storytelling is about engaging your audience and ensuring they can relate with your content subject,” Mutuhuru-Remy said.

Other speakers at the session moderated by Guardian Life editor, Chidera Muoka, were Instagram publishers, Sisi Yemmie, a food blogger and Comedian Wofai Fada.

Wofai Fada, a comedian, said passion is key for any publisher that wants to thrive in the digital publishing space.

“It comes easy because it’s something I love doing. Passion is necessary to push one further.”

She advised publishers to be consistent and continually renew strategies to communicate with their audience.

Sisi Yemmie, a food blogger, said specialization in Instagram publishing has given her an edge in digital publishing.

She urged other publishers to harness Google analytics tool to examine the interests of their audience, as well as means to grow their platforms.

“Your social media analytics helps you decide what types of contents you should post and what time of the day you should post. You need to be aware of what type of content is to be promoted, but be creative and dynamic too,” Sisi Yemmie said.

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Business

Tech Trends That Are Changing Legal Industry

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There’s a statistic that about 89 percent of lawyers use the mobile to check their email on a daily basis, which is a lot above the average for the general population. Add to this the fact that 34 percent of lawyers use tablets in the courtroom and that 27 percent of law firms have a legal blog and you might start getting the full picture. The world of technology and the legal industry are tightly intertwined. This means that every new invention and tech trend changes the landscape of the legal industry for better or worse. With that in mind, here are several tech trends that are making a massive change as we speak.

1.      The blockchain technology

The reason why this, relatively new, trend could introduce such a change, is due to the fact that it can be a basis for the phenomenon known as self-executing contracts (smart contracts). Through this computerized transaction protocol, you can create a scenario in which after a certain party makes a certain payment or meets a certain requirement, it receives a certain reward for it. With the help of blockchain technology, such methods would become a lot more reliable and less likely to be abused or misused.

2.      Technology training

The increase in the amount of legal software getting developed each year is a clear indicator that it soon might be impossible to practice law without an arsenal consisting of various legal tools. The problem with this lies in the fact that a huge portion of the legal world lacks the training to use these tools in the right way. Sure, this is far from a complex tech trend you might have expected, yet, if this change is to become a systemic one, it needs to come from above. Namely, law firms need to make these courses and training sessions mandatory for employees in key positions.

3.      Online mock trials

Benefits of a mock court trial are numerous. For instance, they help keep your team sharp and increase the risk awareness of your clients. Some firms, on the other hand, use these mock trials in order to establish the dollar range for the settlement, which also makes a massive difference for your bottom line. Furthermore, you get to test your arguments and see which topics need further clarification. Mock trials can be held in person, though nowadays there are platforms that offer this service online. Chances are, this feature will be used more and more in the future.

4.      Online answering services

The first contact with the client is incredibly relevant but, at present, clients are more likely to contact a law firm via their website than via their landline. This is why online answering services and the level of implementation of the AI technology in them could be incredibly important. Moreover, it broadens the concept of the online legal business, due to the fact that clients don’t really have to come down to the office in order to get a legal tip or a quote. The simplest queries can be solved immediately via this service.

5.      The paperless approach

In the past, the law industry was one of the most paper-hungry fields out there. All those contracts (and their copies), materials and transcripts required thousands of sheets for every single case. Nowadays, we’re looking towards a paperless future. The funny part of this whole ordeal lies in the fact that judicial and regulatory systems are the ones insisting on this and it’s on lawyers and legal firms to adapt. Sure, this may seem as logical and pragmatic, yet, for a lot of organizations, this change is coming at too fast a pace.

Conclusion

Of course, there are some statistics that aren’t as optimistic. For instance, about 22.6 percent of law firms have no social media presence whatsoever. In this day and age, such a trend is really hard to imagine, though obviously it is present. This alone goes to show that there’s much room for improvement. The above-listed five trends are just some of the examples how.

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