With Valentine’s Day around the corner it’s time to fall in love with your customer again. Here, Darrell Huntley, Head of Customer Service at Flubit.com, shares his insight into how you and your callers can live happily ever after.
As Valentine’s Day approaches, you want to hear yes to a date, dinner, marriage, or that under the right circumstances, perhaps a coffee somewhere public wouldn’t be the worst thing in the world. Customer service agents should seek a yes from customers with the same confidence and passion. The yes you’re seeking here is a “Yes, I am happy.” this is the only trigger to indicate your work is done and you can stop providing support.
Culturally, in customer services this is not the natural pursuit. We’re conditioned to chase one-touch resolutions, xx contacts per day, ticket solves or the mystical CSAT. Wonderful things happen if you look after the customer until they whisper in your ear or gaze deeply into your eyes and say, “Yes, you know what, I’m actually happy.”
There is a glass bridge which needs stepping out onto here. Saying “I’ll get a replacement sent to you” is one thing. Calling or emailing the customer a few days later with a “I just wanted to check you received it” is something else. The path of least resistance is to assume everything is fine and that you’ll handle any subsequent escalation when it happens. Courting a complaint by asking the customer is that blind step forward.
In the same way you would follow up with a date to check she/he returned home safely, or ask if the meal is appetising, channel the romantic in you to make your customers happy. Light a metaphorical candle and scatter imaginary rose petals. Don’t rush the courtship. Trust yourself. Trust that you are taking care of the little things.
This takes extra work. No doubt. What worthy conquest doesn’t come as the reward of a dedicated and focused effort? Winning the heart [Read: Retail loyalty] of another is not a wham-bam-thank-you-ma’am situation.
A gift of a teddy holding a heart might melt hers. A Yorkie bar might melt his, but these won’t put you on the path to love quicker than listening to your beau, being present, supportive and available. Customers fall madly deeply for this too.
A dash of jealousy isn’t out of place here either. Awaken the green-eyed monster. It is not the most powerful tool in your love arsenal but it does display awareness and that you care: “I know there are other retail options out there, I’ve seen how they look at you. You are so important to me/us. I just want us to be able to smile like we used to.”
If your intended is made of ice and seemingly immune to your charm it might be time to roll out the big guns – Poetry. You scoff, but this is absolutely legit advice. Yes, it is corny, but that’s sort of its appeal. For example:
Roses are red
Violets are blue
The best part of my day
Has been helping you
I’m risking claims of sexism by saying poems are enjoyed more by ladies, but broadly speaking, this must be true, right? The flip strategy for a man – Ask him if he wants to hear a joke. Don’t tell the joke straight off. Ask him if he’d like to hear it first. The active ingredient in this recipe d’amour is anticipation.
Agent – Would you like to hear a joke?
Customer – Sure, okay.
Agent – It’s not very funny
Customer – That’s okay, tell me
Agent – What do you call an elephant that doesn’t matter?
Customer – Umm, I don’t know…
Agent – An irrelephant
Customer – Ha! Nice 🙂
Agent – Phew 🙂 Are we good?
Customer – Yes, I’m happy with everything, thank you.
Happy Valentine’s Day! Good Luck!
Just thought of a CS poem? Add it in the comments.
With thanks to Darrell Huntley, Head of Customer Service at Flubit.com. Darrell joined Flubit in 2015 and built a platform integrating seamless customer support for seven channels. His approach is to ensure customers’ expectations are well managed and that his teams are energised and empowered to help in the very best and quickest ways available.
Flubit.com is the UK’s biggest independent online marketplace for products, helping customers secure the best price on over 54 million products. For more information, visit www.flubit.com