How to Motivate Your Customer Service Team
Did you know that customers are 70% more likely to stay with your business if you have excellent customer service? Beyond that, 24% of these satisfied customers will return to a company more than two years after a good experience with their customer service team.
If you haven’t noticed, your customer service team may be the most crucial department in your entire organization. They attract, retain, and support customers before and after their first purchase. They are the reason your company is making sales at all.
So, if you want to see more success, it comes down to having a motivational customer service manager. Keep reading to learn more.
Why Your Customer Service Team Matters
It would be best if you had a basic understanding of how important your customer service team is. Before you can motivate your team to do better, you have to believe in all of the good that they can do. And, believe us, they’re probably one of the most fundamental units within your organization.
But, too many customer service managers don’t understand just how valuable their team is. Likely, you don’t know just how effective excellent customer service is. That’s why you don’t know how to motivate your team.
So, before you begin shouting chants and giving incentives, you need to understand why. Let’s talk about why you should be praising your staff while motivating your team to provide outstanding service.
1. Customer Retention Is the Cheaper Option
Your customer service team is the key to retaining more customers over time. And, keeping customers is much cheaper than finding new ones.
Plus, long-term customers are more likely to spend more on your business’ products and services. More specifically, they’re going to spend about 67% more while buying from your organization.
But, how does a customer service team keep these customers around?
Well, customer service is the one group of people who can convince customers to stay loyal even after something has gone wrong. Their people skills and conversation prowess can turn any situation around. Thus, your customer service team can decrease your customer churn rate and increase your customer retention rate.
By investing in customer service, you’ll find that your company will receive a great return on investment. Putting a small amount of money into your customer service team can lead to great returns from customers who’ve decided to make a second, third, or fourth purchase.
Overall, your customer service team is at the heart of everything that your business can do. Without them, your business wouldn’t be growing. So, motivate support personnel by showing your appreciation.
2. Customer Service Represents Your Business
Whether your business is large or small, you probably believe that all of your employees represent your business somehow. From sales personnel to human resource professionals, each person embodies the spirit and mission of your business.
However, your customer service staff is in a unique position. Because they work for your company, they have the same embodiment of spirit and mission. But, because they interact with customers every single day, they’re much more than that.
As far as your customers are concerned, your customer service team is the heart of your company. And, they’re the ones that your customers look towards whenever anything goes wrong.
It’s essential to recognize that your customer service team represents your brand’s image, mission, and values. They are the ones who are holding up your reputation by providing excellent customer service.
3. Your Customer Service Team’s Attitude Matters
If your customer service team members are happy, your customers will be satisfied. What more could you ask for?
Happy customers are more likely to interact with your brand, make purchases, and share their positive experiences with others. Thus, you want to keep your customers happy. It’s easy to see how this benefits your company.
But, the key to making happy customers is making happy employees. If you have 87% of employees satisfied with their jobs, they are willing to work harder for their company and its customers. In other words, you have a business that is 87% geared to go above and beyond for your customers.
This positivity and appreciation lead to a happier work environment, higher productivity, and a greater sense of community. If everyone is happily working together to make the company better, no job is too big.
Now, it comes down to making your employees happy. And, one of the easiest ways to make them happy is by showing your appreciation for them. Remember, a “Thank You” goes a long way.
With this, you can spend time listening to any complaints or suggestions that they may have. Responding to these competently will show that you’re working hard to ensure they are seen and heard. Then, your employees will be willing to do more work for you.
4. Caring Matters to Your Customers
These days, people want to know that they’re buying from other people. They don’t want to buy from large corporations or robots. There’s something special about that human touch.
Your customer service team happens to be that human touch. They are the ones who make your company seem more approachable, more knowledgeable, and more human.
Your customer service team is responsible for most interactions that happen between a company and its customers. So, they are the ones who convince customers whether or not you’re personable.
Personability is what makes customers stick around for the long haul. And, customers who stick with your business for a more extended period are more likely to make more purchases.
You’re 60% to 70% more likely to sell to an existing customer, while you’re only 5% to 20% likely to do this with a new customer. And, existing customers are 50% more likely to try new products. Plus, they spend 31% more than new customers.
Existing customers are the key to business longevity. Of course, you should keep pulling new customers in. But, your customer service team is responsible for keeping these customers happy.
So, motivating your customer service team involves showing them just how important their communication and personality are. They are the individuals who are pushing more sales just by being themselves. And they contribute to the customer service experience.
5. Customers Pay More for Excellent Customer Service
Customers buy more when they’re given excellent customer service. Customers naturally buy more products and stay loyal to you if they are treated well by the company that they’re buying from.
On the other hand, customers don’t waste their time, energy, or money interacting with a brand with lousy customer service. Why would they waste their time with representatives who aren’t caring for them or their needs properly?
Kind and helpful customer service team members are going to bring in more sales. And, the key to making sure that your team is caring for customers is to make sure that you’re caring for your team.
6. Customer Service Teams Know More
Your customer service team likely knows more about your customers than you know. Even if you’re the customer service manager, your team probably has more experience speaking with customers than you do.
Additionally, your customer service team knows more about what your customers want from your company. They read all of the customers’ questions and comments. They even see the complaints.
Your customer service team handles the good, the bad, and the ugly so that you don’t have to. Motivating them to take these requests isn’t easy. That is especially true if there was a recent issue that has caused customer distress.
No one likes handling problems that they didn’t cause. But, customer service representatives do it anyways.
Along with an appreciation for their work, you should understand the capability of their knowledge. They know what customers are looking for. As they constantly communicate with your customers, they know what you can do to improve the experience for your customers.
Hence, it would be best to regularly meet with your customer service team to discuss trends in customer comments and questions. There may be some trends among customers that can point to improvements you need to make as a company.
7. Delivering Excellent Service Leads to a Higher Customer Lifetime Value
A great customer service team will lead to a higher customer lifetime value. The customer lifetime value, or CLV, tells companies the total revenue they can expect from a single customer throughout their relationship with that customer. The higher the CLV is, the better off you are as a business.
A growing CLV tells you that customers are shopping more often and spending more money.
If you’re looking to improve your CLV, you need to invest in excellent customer service. Delivering exceptional service leads to customers buying more.
Not only that. Providing excellent customer service has many positive side effects. Your customers will also tell others about your business or are willing to write positive reviews about you. They are solidifying the social proof that is much needed in today’s customer-centric world.
But, what exactly are customer service representatives doing to encourage more sales?
Well, other than creating and maintaining a good relationship with your customers, the customer service team also engages in upselling and cross-selling.
Upselling involves recommending more expensive products to a customer looking at the cheapest option that your company offers. To do this, your team may share the benefits of upgrading and explain how the upgrade would improve their lives.
Cross-selling involves selling products that are related to products that the customer is currently viewing. For example, a customer may be looking at buying some new shoes. In response, your team may suggest other similar shoes or maybe even a shoe organizer.
You can motivate your team to keep these sales going. It’s essential to recognize the impact of these more minor sales on the bottom line.
8. Customer Service Teams Are Proactive
As a motivational customer service manager, you want to ensure that your customer service teams are proactive. Luckily, they usually are. It’s the nature of the job.
Adopting proactive customer service means that you’re picking up on and responding to questions or concerns before customers even have to ask. By anticipating their needs, your customer service team would show that they genuinely care about the customer’s experience using the product or service.
And, showing that you care goes a long way with customers. That is especially if you directly contact them about problems or questions you feel they may have, which is exactly what customer service professionals do.
Keeping your team motivated will encourage this kind of proactive behavior. In turn, you’ll see even more happy customers and fewer complaints down the line. It’s a win-win situation.
9. Your Customers Value Your Customer Service Team
Whether you realize it or not, your customer service team is what holds your entire business together. Your customers value your team more than they may know.
Did you know that 72% of customers of customers expect every business to treat them as individuals with unique needs and wants? Because of this, consumers are becoming more and more involved with customer support. They expect that your customer service team knows them well.
And, your team probably does know each customer pretty well. With their data collection alone, your customer service team can figure out a lot.
But, you have to motivate your team to take advantage of this data and show the customers that they care.
The best motivation in this situation is showing your customer service team just how much they’re making a difference. Maybe they send emails on their customers’ birthdays. Perhaps they follow up after every sale to ask for a review.
Whatever personal touches they add, you should show them just how much they’re impacting your business and these customers’ lives. Each touch of personalization that your customer service team adds to their work matters to your customers. Therefore, it matters to the future of your business.
10. Your Customer Service Team Is Your Advantage
The last reason that you need to push your customer service team is that they are the reason you have a competitive edge. No matter what your product or service is, your customer service team matters more.
Even if your competition has a better product or service, you’re likely to get more praise if you have better customer service.
Of course, this doesn’t mean that you should slack on developing fantastic items and software. But, it does mean that focusing on the people matters just as much (if not more).
Your customer service team matters because they are the people who will clean up any messes or solve any problems. So, even if there are a few glitches with your latest creation, they can mend customer relationships.
Treat your customer service representatives like they are the ones responsible for your business because they are. They are the ones who bring in customers. They are the ones who convince them to stay.
It’s pretty motivational to hear that the business is depending on you to do your job.
Tactics for the Motivational Customer Service Manager
Now, you have at least ten reasons and ways to motivate your customer service staff. You should now understand the value and promise they bring to your organization.
Once you’ve convinced them of how important they are, it’s time to target this positive energy. Next, you need to push all of this energy into positive actions that will work towards the betterment of your business.
Of course, you don’t want to make your team too arrogant. But, your customer service team needs to know how their job affects the rest of the company. So, they need to do it right if they’re not going to let anyone down.
1. Give Them the Data
Your customer service representatives are likely data-driven people. They like to see the numbers. They want to know and understand how those numbers change (or remain the same) over time.
So, you need to give them the data.
By providing customer feedback in real-time, you can deliver some positive reinforcement. Your customer service agents spend all day interacting with customers. And, whether those interactions are positive or negative, it’s nice to hear that they’re doing their jobs right.
Be sure to praise specific employees who stand out in their positions. Provide specific feedback to each customer service representative based on customer comments.
In the end, this will provide validation for each employee. You’ll make them feel as though all of the work that they’ve been doing is worth it. Without hearing this feedback, they won’t know whether or not they’ve been approaching situations correctly.
It’s also important to follow up on negative encounters. Allow your customer service team to tell you when conflicts occur. And, don’t use negative language even when you feel that the employee may have made a mistake.
The goal is to reach a positive resolution that will improve customer relationships and customer support.
2. Check-In Regularly
As the customer service manager, that entire team is your responsibility. With this responsibility, you should be sure to deliver insights at the moment.
You’re more than a manager. You’re a coach.
It would be best if you took the time each day to give feedback. You could wait for the quarterly review that you give every employee or give feedback on the spot.
Taking a few seconds to congratulate an employee on a job well done can go a long way. Then, you’ll see even better results in the future. They’ll feel appreciated and be more likely to have positive interactions with patients.
It’s a positive cycle that does good for you, the employee, the customer, and the business.
3. Develop a Quality Assurance System
Every successful customer service team has some system to ensure that they’re delivering quality support. This system tracks data concerning each team member and their performance over time.
Having this resource is beneficial for you as a manager and them as employees. Implementing this system will make it easier for you to give tangible feedback so that they can improve. It also ensures that you receive actual data about the employees rather than third-party information from customers who may or may not be so happy.
With this system in place, you’ll be able to curate data faster than ever.
4. Encourage Follow-Up Conversations
If you genuinely want to make more positive connections with customers, you need to follow up on positive and negative conversations.
By following up on positive feedback, you’re ensuring that your relationship with that customer remains positive. By following up on negative ones, you’re making a favorable situation out of a negative one.
Follow-up conversations can save your relationship with a customer when it’s done right.
So, you should motivate your team to follow up with every customer, even those customers who didn’t respond in the first place.
Technology for Your Customer Service Team
As a motivational customer service manager, you should be providing the work environment that your employees need to thrive. Of course, this also means that you should be providing the technology that can help them along the way.
Here at Helpmonks, we’ve created an all-in-one team collaboration tool that your customer service team demands. Helpmonks has everything successful service managers and your customer service team needs.
So, what are you waiting for? Get started with a free trial today.
Tuesday October 5, 2021