We explain what customer service is and the importance of these methods. In addition, the techniques they use and their elements.
What is customer service?
Customer service or customer service is understood as the methods used by a company to get in touch with its customers , to guarantee, among other things, that the good or service offered reaches its consumers and is used correctly. It is also an efficient marketing tool .
In general, customer service services pursue consumer satisfaction , providing support, guidance or instructions regarding what is necessary. And in some cases, the areas of a company dedicated to this activity can also provide support to the other internal divisions that require it. For these purposes, these areas are considered “internal customers”.
Customer service is usually studied based on service cycles, that is, chains of actions implemented before the consumer’s requirement or at certain times, and which include the following processes:
- Plannings temporary service . Some types of customer support depend on seasons, specific moments or specific times to activate, so that they have a certain regularity, such as tourism : it is accentuated during the holiday season and decreases without disappearing during the rest of the year.
- Renewal of customer needs . Other types of services are usually given in a renewable way, so that from time to time they require customer service for verification, such as subscriptions to magazines or specific services.
- Feedback customer . Customer feedback is key to defining the strategies that best suit you and that are best for you, for which you can use various types of surveys or evaluations.
Because it is important?
An adequate customer service may well mean the difference over the competition for any company, and it can be a promotional tool as much or more powerful than marketing, advertising or personal selling.
Considering that attracting a new customer is usually much more expensive than maintaining an existing one, keeping the customer base excited is a commandment. Even more so when there are as many forms of competition as today, thanks to the global market and the emergence of 2.0 platforms.
Today, customers demand attention from their companies , in a reciprocal process called “loyalty,” in which consumption is personalized and becomes part of the social identity of the consumer. For this it is essential to have an adequate customer service.
What techniques do you use?
Customer service techniques can be broadly grouped into:
- Explanation techniques . Those in which the greatest amount of relevant information is communicated verbally to the user to help him make the most informed decisions about his consumption. They should respond to the formula: problem-solution-benefit, so that the client is led to the recommended formula to satisfy it.
- Empathy techniques . Those that provide the client with a high degree of involvement from the company, which make them feel accompanied or part of something bigger. They are usually very successful, but require more investment of time per operator, since each case is given individual and individual attention.
- Interrogation techniques . Those that are based on applying to the client a series of questions (of questionnaire or not) regarding the matter of their needs, in order to provide a really specialized attention in the matter, instead of wasting time in explanations.
Elements of customer service
The elements of customer service are:
- Contact face to face . That is, the possibility of interviewing the client and giving personalized attention, not mediated through an electronic system or a telephone call. This reinforces the link with the client and makes him feel heard.
- Client relationship . Strengthening the relationship with the client is key in the services of attention, and this has been evidenced thanks to social networks and culture 2.0, in which the branding or loyalty of the brands becomes imperative in the relationship between the company and the consumer
- Correspondence . Correspondence between client and company is key to healthy customer service, as it strengthens the identification between the two and the resolution of problems that arise.
- Claims and compliments . The client must have some way of exerting pressure so that their problems or dissatisfactions are fixed, or reward the good performance of some department of the company.
- Facilities . The client must be given the physical address of the facilities to which he can go to receive face-to-face contact. Not everything, in short, can be virtual or digital.