How do you customers want to communicate to you, and what channels do you offer?
Do you use voice, email, chat, SMS, mobile applications and social media?
Which one gets the fastest response? why?
Primary means of communication are e-mail, voice, text and social media. A text will often get a reply when you've can't get a timely reply to a voice mail or e-mail. Also, use LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter more and more to connect with clients that have been difficult to get in touch with. This works very well with new clients that you are just beginning to work with you. In the more professional membership culture of a LinkedIn, people get the opportunity to actually know something about you and your professional credentials, before responding to your e-mail message on LinkedIn or an invitation to LinkedIn.
Twitter, is also a great place to cultivate key relationships with potential new clients by following specific companies and specific key people in these companies. There are real opportunities here to get your name in front of some very key people in many organizations.
1. Depend on the types of customer you have
2. Depend on the result you like to achieve from the communicate
3. Depend on costs of communication
... really differs from different trades.
I had been in many industries ... they are all different ... but some common trends like:
1. email become more acceptable as legal evident than past
2. using sms to close sales and advertising become popular in some trades
3. more mobile applications going for commercial benefits
I mean, technology does creates convenience and productivity, whatever communication techniques can help in boosting economic benefits and taking care of environment at the same time for the particular trade, they are consider good.
Every form of communication is important and should be offered if possible. Calls are direct so would be the fastest response but not everyone wants to use it. Some customers prefer e-mail or social media so it should be available. I have noticed that many customers are moving towards mobile communication so mobile websites, texts, and calls are probably on the increase.
I guess all these options that you have added up here will meet the requirements for most of the businesses in either ways. I could be telling this for sure since I got to experience a better reputation for my business. Initially, I tried communicating with the customers via email and chat support. While, the number started to raise (both, the customers as well the inquiries), I wished to have a separate channels in social media and the videos (that helped me to answer simpler).
And, of course a separate team to answer the calls. Obviously, this has groomed my business by receiving thousands of trusted customers.
* Yet to be particular, I'd tell that calls would help the business as well the customers to better understand in acquiring the solution sooner.
Thanks for putting up such a question here Bruce :)
I believe that Email, Skype, Phone and Whatsapp cover all potential scenario bot with national and international customers!
In person is best for me and telephone , email in that order
I don't feel businesses must communicate on every channel they can. But the ones they choose they have to be present and responsive. So many fail at this.
Also being a huge customer service expert and advocate it often leads to more brand and product loyalty. As we developed less personal channels people were more likely to contact businesses. It is more pain vs effort. For someone to go to a business and complain it meant they really had an issue. Most would stay quiet and tell people by word of mouth what you did wrong. Now they will tweet less important issues but they do expect a response. I have a client who gets complaints on Yelp with a poor review and we even respond there for them. Some of them we flipped to be major brand advocates.