CUSTOMER SERVICE NEEDS TO BE PROACTIVE AND ANTICIPATORY
Customer service can be proactive, that is, originate from the company.
Yes, I’m sure you believe you’re already doing this, in which case, good for you. However, I’m talking about something much more strategic, genuine, and far reaching. Too many companies operate on the level of don’t ask, don’t tell and assume that just because the phone isn’t ringing, their customers are satisfied and content. Not surprisingly, the same companies are equally shocked when they open up the customer cupboard to find it bare. Instead, why not make a concerted effort to earnestly probe customers to find out how you rate and stack up against their high standards—and hopefully yours as well.
Old customer service spoke when it was spoken to. New customer service anticipates requirements, listens attentively for customers in need, and proactively searches for problems to fix. Part of this process is an engaged listening strategy designed to identify opportunities, spot problems before they balloon, and surprise (and hopefully delight) consumers by making an unexpected move in the form of responding to them.
In a perfect world, when a customer complains about a company to 1,000,000 of their closest strangers (i.e., they blog), before they know it, someone from the company is already reaching out to them to try to solve their problem. In fact, the sooner there is first contact, the quicker the problem can be addressed before it festers or ...