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How To Create an Effective Customer Service Strategy

Is your company gaining rave reviews thanks to its superb customer service? Are customers flocking to your door because everyone says you’re the best? If you’re wondering how to improve customer retention, win accolades in online reviews and forums, or gain enthusiastic customer referrals, it’s time to work on your customer service strategy. 

The final result will be unique to your company, but the process and its key components are generalisable. So, if you’re wondering how to craft a customer service strategy, need implementation tips or are wondering if you’re on track with an existing strategy, this article is for you!

Read our guide to customer service.

Why your Customer Service Strategy is so Important

Customer service is a vitally important component of your business’s overall reputation. It not only impacts how customers feel about your business, but also how your employees see the company they work for. 

It’s not just about feelings, however. Customer service directly impacts your business’s bottom line. When you deliver great customer service, you’ll find it easier to keep the customers you already have. They’ll also be eager to refer friends and associates, attracting new customers. 

Facing tough competition in your market? Customer service could be the differentiating factor that sets your business apart from the pack. Tired of a race to the bottom when it comes to pricing? People are prepared to pay more when they can be confident about your service. 

Additional advantages include staff members who are motivated because they are part of an organisation that delivers value to its customers. You may experience lower staff turnover, and a better capacity to attract top talent. In addition, being customer focused means that your business will be committed to quality and efficiency. Once again, this impacts profitability and competitiveness. 

Gearing up to serve customers efficiently also means improving efficiencies throughout your business. All in all, a customer service strategy has more far-reaching impacts than many people realise. 

Great results come from great strategies. The old saying that failing to plan means you’re planning to fail holds true. If you’re wondering how to develop effective customer service strategies, this article will give you the roadmap you need. Let’s get started!

Creating a Customer Service Strategy

Get Company-Wide Participation

Excellent customer service is a team effort. It’s not just your customer-faced personnel who need to be involved. When serving customers, they’ll be making promises on behalf of your business – and that will impact the departments who must deliver on those promises. 

Get ideas from everyone – here’s your chance to streamline just about everything your business does. 

Be Visionary

The best customer service strategies begin with a vision. You know where you stand now. Where would you like to go? A vision is much more than a nice-sounding statement. It’s the goal your business will work toward. With your vision focussed on customers, you’ll be working towards customer centricity. It’s a claim many businesses make, but not all of them live up to it. You will. 

At this point in the process, you shouldn’t be thinking about the journey. Instead, you’re determining the destination. Be as specific as possible. Make your vision inspiring, unique, and believable. 

Map and Optimise Customer Journeys

You may know less about customer experiences than you realise. To understand them, you should undertake customer journey mapping. Remember, your customers’ experiences are the sum total of every interaction they have with your business. Map out these touchpoints beginning with typical customer journeys

Your goal is to optimise them with customer service in mind. That doesn’t necessarily imply interpersonal interaction every step of the way. Simply making it easy for customers to do business with you is already a form of customer service. 

Set Goals and Milestones for Customer Service

No strategy succeeds without goals and milestones. What yours will consist of depends on your individual business, but if you’re looking for ideas you might include customer satisfaction metrics like:

  • Customer Satisfaction Score (CSAT)
  • Net Promoter Score (NPS)
  • Customer Churn Rate (Improved customer retention)
  • Service Quality Metrics (QA Score)
  • Average Response Times
  • First Contact Resolution Rate

Last but not least, remember that pre-empting the need for customer service and support interventions is a positive sign that you’re making things easy for your customers. Few hassles? Fewer customers with questions and niggles? If that’s coupled with sales growth and positive feedback from customers, you’ll know that your digital customer service strategy is working.

Final Steps

In developing a customer service strategy using the preceding steps you’ll have achieved the following:

  • You determined customer needs by looking at the current situation
  • You determined a strategic goal by creating a vision for customer service
  • You set intermediate goals and time-bound milestones with measurable key performance indicators

However, you may need to provide enabling technologies and training, so resource allocation is important too. Your company needs to be well equipped for the task ahead. Set it up for success. 

How to Implement Customer Service Strategies

Review, Adapt, Progress

With everybody already on board and with clear and achievable goals to reach, it’s time to get started. But you can’t just “set and forget.” Regular reviews form part of the implementation process. And, although you’re unlikely to experience a complete back-to-the-drawing board experience, you still need to be flexible. 

Be ready to adjust your strategy in the light of employee and customer feedback. Keep checking those metrics, and keep a sharp eye on your competitors. Whatever you do, don’t lose momentum. Celebrate successes and conquer challenges. Keep moving towards your goal. 

Never Forget That Customers are Your VIPs

Customers are the ultimate judges who determine whether your customer service strategy is successful. While emailed surveys, facts, and figures are a help, the best way to find out what they’re thinking is to listen to what they say

An empathetic and service-driven customer support team will gather more details and data than any emailed survey or statistic ever will. Prioritise your customers by encouraging detailed feedback from your customer service team – even when it poses fresh challenges for you to address. 

Can Customer Service Outsourcing Help You?

In-person interactions, when they occur, represent a golden opportunity to engage with customers. But managing a customer service team, and ensuring that customer service is always on-point can be extremely intensive. 

There are many benefits to customer service outsourcing. For example, your support team will be scalable based on current real-time needs, and the technologies to serve clients well and give you data-driven feedback should already be in place. 

However, quality and partnership are key factors. At RSVP, customer service is our core business, so we’ll always prioritise your goals and your customers’ satisfaction. As a starting point, we’re confident that we can offer in-house equivalence. From there, we’ll rapidly progress towards service levels that are far better than anything you can offer on your own. 

Are you ready to fast-track your progress towards your strategic goals for customer service? Then it’s time you talked to RSVP. Need a recommendation? Take a look at what we did for Mercedes Benz! We’ll represent your brand just as well.

 

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