Sometimes it’s Okay To Go Unscripted

According to ICMI Research, 45 percent of consumers will switch to voice for online transactions if their needs aren’t being met or if their questions or concerns are not addressed immediately by an automated system.

Therefore, it’s important that contact center agents be prepared to handle calls swiftly and often spontaneously. This means agents must sometimes forego their scripts to ensure a customer doesn’t feel like he or she is simply being given the run around.

A few strategies to improve unscripted calls include:

  • Provide customer care uniformity by ensuring agents have the flexibility and tools to improvise when needed.
  • Be natural. Customers don’t want to speak to robots and can easily detect when a call is becoming a simulation of an automated call, rather than a physically present and human response.
  • Respond to a customer’s concerns with the utmost respect. If customers are upset, empathize to show that you’re not only there to listen, but also to help.
  • Concentrate on finding solutions or options that can satisfy or resolve your customers’ concerns.

Remember: Your contact center services ROI depends heavily on the ability of your agents to make a human connection with customers. So your agents should always put themselves in the shoes of your customers.  What may seem trivial to you may matter immensely to him or her. Consumers have distinct expectations and life experiences, so don’t assume their issues are unimportant. Though the use of scripts allows most agents to stay on track, use your better judgment to determine when you need to reach out to your customer compassionately.

Business Intelligence services that allow you to understand your customer base and personalize their experience, include list development and data analytics, such as predictive models, customer data profiles, segmentation strategies and demographic scripting, which are all invaluable to improve your results and heighten your contact services ROI.

Steve Brubaker began his career at InfoCision in 1985. In his current role as Chief of Staff and as a member of the Executive Team, he is responsible for HR, internal and external communications, and manages the company’s legal and compliance departments. Brubaker is a member of a number of professional organizations, including the DMA and PACE. He also donates his time to serve on several university boards, including the Executive Advisory Board for The Taylor Institute for Direct Marketing at The University of Akron and The University of Akron Foundation Board. He has also been honored with a number of awards and recognitions for his contributions to the call center industry, including the ATA’s highest honor, the prestigious Fulcrum Award.

Derive Insights From Your Customers’ Social Media Conversations

Today’s consumers are verbose, but not necessarily over the phone. Rather, your customers openly share, sometimes brutally, their honest feedback on your brand’s quality of customer care across a multitude of social media outlets.

With that said, businesses ought to cast an eye toward the conversations that are continuously unfolding on platforms like Twitter and Facebook. Your consumers are likely to share positive reviews about their customer care experiences; however, aggregated research confirms that they are even more likely to share negative brand experiences.

As such, it’s vital that you stay informed on the tone and context of their conversations about your brand so that you can appropriately adjust your customer care strategy. And, due to the fact that not all of your clientele will share their honest thoughts during a customer care phone call or even participate in a survey, you need to make sure you can garner insights from outside sources.

Case in point, do you read through Tweets sent your way and purposely track the number of times they are shared? It’s important to heed the advice that your consumers are posting in plain sight. For instance, perhaps you notice a Tweet that’s portrayed your customer care agents in a negative light. To make matters worse, this particular post received a slew of comments—all of which appear to substantiate the original complaint. There a few ways you can leverage this social media conversation and turn it into actionable data.

First, you must immediately share this information with your agents so they can correct the offending behavior(s). In so doing, you’ll level the playing field. Second, you must respond to your consumers. Owning up to your customer care missteps and making a promise to provide improved services in the future will assure your consumers that you’re listening to their concerns and keeping them top of mind.

Sometimes we need to look at information outside the contact center to make effective improvements from within. So what are you waiting for? Start scrolling through your news feeds!

Steve Brubaker began his career at InfoCision in 1985. In his current role as Chief of Staff and as a member of the Executive Team, he is responsible for HR, internal and external communications, and manages the company’s legal and compliance departments. Brubaker is a member of a number of professional organizations, including the DMA and PACE. He also donates his time to serve on several university boards, including the Executive Advisory Board for The Taylor Institute for Direct Marketing at The University of Akron and The University of Akron Foundation Board. He has also been honored with a number of awards and recognitions for his contributions to the call center industry, including the ATA’s highest honor, the prestigious Fulcrum Award.