client services

Up Your Game with an Empowered Client Services Team

You can come up with an innovative marketing campaign, hire a celebrity spokesperson, or build the best product, but there’s truly nothing like word of mouth. Your existing customers will always outsell you 10 to one. After all, people will trust a recommendation from a next-door neighbor more than any promotional information you have to offer. And thanks to social media, word of mouth can now be spread much faster than ever. Your client services team dictates the words that come from your clients’ mouths. Your team has the power to turn each client into a walking billboard for your company.

The question is: will that billboard be a sign of praise or protest?

Investing in the People Who Power Your Company

A client services team can not only make your customers eager to recommend you to their peers, but it can also stop you from losing the business you already have. Case in point: 62 percent of B2B customers and 42 percent of B2C customers will buy more after they’ve received good customer service. On the other hand, more than half of both types of customers will stop buying from you after a bad service experience.

Every year, $62 billion goes down the tubes because businesses provide poor customer service. So it’s well worth the investment in a solid client services team. When trained, motivated, and armed with the necessary tools, your customer support team will be your biggest asset in creating happy customers who can’t wait to sing your praises across social media.

Assembling a solid client services team is no easy endeavor. Whether you choose to build an in-house team or outsource to an agency, it takes a focused hiring strategy.

Assembling a Client Services Team

When JVZOO.com first hit the scene, we experienced rapid client growth. We had to juggle client relations while also developing and managing our platforms. This balancing act was difficult, so we hired a client services team through a third-party agency. We went this route because we knew a professional company would know how to handle support and training. As we were interviewing at the agency level, we focused on three key factors:

  • Industry knowledge | Agencies needed to know what our company did before they were hired because this would shorten the learning curve and improve client relations
  • The right attitude | Client services teams are always working with people, so we conducted multiple video interviews to gauge agencies’ demeanors and attitudes
  • Culture fit | We had to make sure agencies not only looked good on paper but also that their workers could handle our workflow. It was important for them to fit into the fast-paced tech industry

Empowering Your Client Services Team

Once your team is set up, you can’t just forget about it. Good leaders pick the path, set the pace, and maintain the course for the team, so you must set up processes and systems the team can quickly implement.

Keep an Ear to the Ground

When an issue arises, don’t just assume it’s being handled. As your company grows, it can be easy for common issues and clients to fall through the cracks. Spot-check all your social media outlets so you know what your clients and peers say about you. You also need to be in the know about where your teammates struggle. Discover what makes them more efficient, and learn how to empower them to do their best work.

At JVZOO.com, we work to analyze common customer questions and make improvements to avoid potential headaches. Forty-two percent of service agents can’t solve their clients’ problems efficiently due to outdated or complicated technology, so resolving tech issues helps smooth things out. It also helps to automate customer service by using a knowledge bank. As customer concerns roll in, your teammates can provide customers with information, then place that information in a bank where future customers with similar issues can quickly access it.

Shake Off the Chains of Analysis Paralysis

Procrastination and over analyzing are plagues that hinder most entrepreneurs, but they can be detrimental to client relations. Thanks to social media, unaddressed minor issues can escalate into catastrophes, so nip problems in the bud without hesitation. It might help to have a customer service manager in the trenches to help you catch and solve problems as they arise.

Don’t Be Afraid to Repeal and Replace

You might have excellent people on your client services team, but they won’t be able to reach their full potential if you don’t have good processes in place. Improve processes through trial and error, and be sure to welcome team input. Don’t become attached to any process just because it kind of works. Try new methods to keep pushing for perfection.

Set the Bar Higher

You should always strive to create loyal customers, not just satisfied ones. A satisfied customer will shop anywhere. A loyal customer will only buy from you. Don’t stop at satisfaction; go above and beyond to create loyalty. Your goal is to retain your customers for as long as possible.  Because it’s five times more expensive to acquire a new customer than to keep an existing customer. Clients already expect excellent products and services. So, you’ll need to focus on giving them more than what they paid for.

 

 

Laura Casselman

Laura Casselman is the CEO of JVZoo.com, an online software solution that allows sellers to create an instant affiliate program for their products on blogs, websites, and online forums. In 2016, Inc. magazine ranked JVZoo.com No. 779 on its Inc. 5000 — the most prestigious ranking of the nation's fastest-growing private companies. Laura has 16 years of experience in growing sales and revenue, improving customer service, and aggressively controlling expenses in competitive market environments.

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