Right under your nose lies one of the simplest and most effective approaches to marketing for any business of any size. What is it? Customer service. This may seem a bit odd. However, customer service is, in fact, an important part of marketing.
After all, a customer who has a poor experience with a business is likely to make it known how unhappy they are with the service they received. On the other hand, a customer who has a great experience is more likely to recommend the business to others. This is, in essence, free marketing.
Even businesses marketing to other businesses can benefit from upping their customer service game. Somehow, it seems some seem to forget the importance of customer service, even when other businesses are involved.
For example, think of a software company marketing a customer relationship management tool to salespeople. CRM software is easy to come by, and it seems there is a new product entering the market almost daily.
In this instance, customer service can often make or break a decision to opt for one software over another. After all, the foundational features will be somewhat similar to one another. So in order to win over the customer, something must be better.
Often, customer service falls by the wayside. It can be difficult to get in touch with a person who can help, and automated responses and phone systems can be nothing short of infuriating for the customer.
If the experience of trying to get help is too difficult or unproductive, this is often enough reason for a customer to look for a solution elsewhere. So find ways to make customer service more intuitive, more human, for every customer who requires assistance.
There are several ways to accomplish this. An easy way to increase the quality of a company’s customer service is to ensure that all communication channels are closely monitored.
This goes for social media, email, phone lines, and website inquiries. A customer does not want to have to search for the best way to get help, nor do they want to wait days for a response. Sheer volume often necessitates automated responses, which work well to notify a customer that the company has acknowledged its message or inquiry.
However, at some point during the service cycle, there should be a human element. This is as simple as a personal message from the communications team or a phone call made by the customer service team to do a follow-up. Indeed, customer service and marketing truly go hand in hand.
Poor customer service can have devastatingly detrimental effects on the success of a business, even those in the B2B space. Just a simple increase of effort to make sure customer service maintains a “human” feel will be a big step in the right direction to increase the effectiveness of a company’s marketing strategy.