How To Improve Customer Service: A Human Touch In The Digital Age
Offering quality customer service is one of the ways to increase customer satisfaction.
Through great customer support, first-time clients can be converted into loyal, repeat customers to the extent that they recommend you to their friends and family. This may even result in more positive reviews, which is a big plus for your tours/ activities business.
In this era of digitization and automation advances, brands ought to add a human touch to their customer service. Recognize that ‘online service’ does not mean ‘robotic service’.
In this article, we’ll give you tips to help you improve your customer service in this digital age. You’ll learn the essentials including using actual experts for customer support, personalizing your messages, being friendly, being personable, and many more.
Table of Contents
1. Let your guides take over
Statistics show that 80% of travelers spend up to 4 weeks researching, reading reviews and getting tips in preparation for their travels. This means that by the time a customer contacts your company for support, they probably have some basic information about the issue of concern.
Because customers can be quite knowledgeable, it’s necessary to have your most resourceful employees handling customer service.
For example, try putting your guides, the ones who are actually out in the field with your clients, climbing mountains and going for city tours, on the frontlines of your social media channels. Let them answer some of the questions potential clients may have with regard to your tours.
The expertise and practical experience of your guides make them well-positioned to offer customer support. By letting them take over your channel from time to time, you have the opportunity to respond better to your audience and add a human element to your brand.
When customers see the actual guides they’ll be touring with and how knowledgeable and helpful your team is, they are more likely to leave positive reviews about your business. This can lead to boosted brand trust hence more bookings.
2. Personalize your messages
Whether you’re communicating with customers via email or chat, on phone, or in person, a more personalized approach can work wonders.
Research shows that personalized emails deliver up to six times more transaction rates. More to that, there’s a 29% higher open rate when you address the customer by name.
Unique Open Rates for Emails with Personalized Subject Lines by Industry:
Source: Marketing Land
You’ll do yourself a great service by personalizing messages to your potential customers.
Apart from using the client’s name, another way of personalizing messages is having employees sign off using their name or initials instead of only a company name. When customers contact you for support, they already know you’re the company. Using the employee’s name humanizes the communication and builds better brand-client rapport.
You can also consider using a personalized email address to send the message instead of a generic corporate one. For example, use “email@example.com” instead of “firstname.lastname@example.org”.
Personalized messages make customers feel like they are talking to real people they can reach out to and trust.
3. Show real people
While stock photos may come in handy to pass a specific message, it’s better to use real images that you’ve taken on your tours or activities, on your website and online communications.
Use photos of your enthusiastic employees and/or previous happy clients and give potential customers a taste of what to expect when they book with you.
To boost engagement even further, add your own videos on your website. You can give instructions for customer support through videos featuring some of your team members.
4. Establish a friendly tone
Customers want to be treated like people and not a sale or account number.
We’ve already established that what you say to a potential customer really matters. It should be high-level information that is helpful and can solve the customer’s problem. Customer service reps should also use polite words that show respect and empathy where need be.
But more to what you say, how you say it really matters. A friendly tone results in better communication and can make the customer more comfortable interacting with your business.
Do you know that 73% of consumers admit that a major deciding factor in “falling in love” with a brand is friendly employees or customer service representatives? The more reason you should look for every opportunity to offer a friendly experience for your customers.
Ensure your written messages are also polite. If your email, social media post, or chat message is too stiff, it may come off as unfriendly and unapproachable. Aim to show empathy with your words, exude kindness and a willingness to help.
5. Use live chat
Live chat is a fast and effective way to engage and connect with your customers and prospects.
This customer support channel is advantageous for both your business and customers. It’s a much cheaper and easier way of communicating with clients as opposed to phone calls and emails.
Customers prefer to live chat because they get their questions answered quickly. It also has the highest satisfaction level for any customer service channel at 73 to 81%.
Live chat, as opposed to chatbots, bring about the human touch to customer care in the face of automation.
6. Include testimonials
Adding testimonials from previous clients is a great way to build trust and establish credibility for your business. By showcasing your satisfied customers’ positive feedback about your business, it sends a message that you’re a trusted professional and reliable brand.
7. Create a memorable customer experience
Overall, tour customers want to enjoy interacting with the brand they choose. They are more likely to leave a review later if their experience was memorable enough.
A customer’s experience begins right from the time the customer gets on your website and makes a booking, up until the actual tour takes place. This process should be as easy as possible, with no hassle or friction.
In case of any problem along the way, customers want to know that your company can and will take care of everything.
Make the tour experience unique and let it stand out from your competition. And in the end, when you ask for a review from your customers, you can be almost sure it’ll be positive feedback.
Adding a human touch to your company is vital to nurturing and sustaining a good relationship with your audience and customers. It also sets you up to offer better customer service. And when it comes to ratings on review sites, the quality of your customer service can affect how high you go.
So, in summary, these are the tips you can implement to improve your customer service:
- Use experts to offer quality customer service
- Personalize your messages
- Show real people
- Be friendly
- Use live chat
- Add testimonials on your site
- Create a memorable customer experience