How to Build Customer Service Strategy for Digital Natives
Head of Content
⏱ Reading Time: 9 minutes
With today’s technology advancement, strategies and ways of doing business have changed and will continue to evolve. Business owners, manufacturing companies and service providers now employ better customer service strategy plans to provide their customers with outstanding customer experience. This change in customer service strategy is driven by a sudden rise in the population of the new generation of customers referred to as the digital natives.
Who are the Digital Natives?
Most business owners may have come in contact with the term ‘Digital Natives’ however if you haven’t, don’t worry. In the next few lines, you’ll be well apprised of who they are and why they are called the digital natives.
The “digital natives” is a term invented by Marc Prensky which is attributed to a group or generation of people who were born, raised and thrive in the era of the existing technology which includes computers and the internet. This set of people are raised with technology, therefore, they become comfortable with it at an early stage and consider it to be an integral and important part of their lives. Most digital natives are found within the Millennials and Generation Y and Z generations. However, in general classification of customer service, digital natives refer to anyone who is more comfortable using technology for everyday activities spending most of their time on the internet.
In the business world, the term ‘digital native’ is embraced as a lucrative way to group customers for effective marketing. This set of people are perceived to be more knowledgeable, tend to emphasize their feelings which influences their buying decisions directly. Given that this generation of people is increasing in population and will become the main decision-makers possessing the most buying power, it is important for you as a business person to restructure your customer service strategy in a way that it resonates with them.
Building Customer Service Strategy for Digital Natives
Previously, customers had to ask people around for information before making buying decisions. But today, information has become ‘Google Search’ away. With the advent of social media, smartphones and internet access, information is now accessible at the fingertip transforming the digital natives into a generation of people who loves convenience. With these traits, their buying patterns have also been affected as they prefer to shop conveniently from the comfort of their room with high expectations of excellent customer experience. At the same time, they don’t hesitate to publicly voice out their concerns or criticize any company that falls short of these expectations. The picture of an angry customer venting their feelings on twitter or facebook will definitely tell you the story.
By now, I’m sure you fully understand that customer needs are changing. While the older generation books a visit to your office, gets you on the phone to make inquiries or vent their disappointment about a product/service, the digital natives have no time for this. They prefer texting, chats or even more public channels like Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter. Therefore it won’t be wrong to say that while the basic tenets of customer service remain the same, the means of communication for digital natives have changed thereby affecting the customer service game.
Picture 1. How to get to know your customers better?
Now you’ve realized this, how do you rejig your customer service strategy plan in order to take advantage of the new demands to build a better customer experience? Here are some customer service strategy examples you can employ to build a better customer experience for the digital natives.
Proactive Customer Support on your Website
According to a report by Forrester Research, more than 70% of today’s customers prefer to get their answers from a company’s website rather than contacting the company’s support center. Among the millennials which are part of the digital natives, 84% have used self-service portals for their customer service queries. This means that customers now prefer to sort out their issues by themselves instead of relying on anyone for help. Despite this demand for self-service support, the innovations done so far are still not enough considering the way it’s provided. Current self-support on websites is mostly filled with lengthy knowledge bases and support forums making it difficult to find the relevant help content.
If your aim is to win the heart of digital natives, you must make your self-service support more customer-centric using interactive walkthroughs. This will help the user by demonstrating the exact steps they need to take to get their queries resolved.
Picture 2. Let the customers about your availability
Actively Use Social Media
If you’re not engaging your customers using at least two social media platforms, you’re dropping the ball. Since digital natives spend most of their time on social media, they expect to see you there and also expect to have their questions answered without having to call your customer care support on the phone.
- Set up social media channels for your business (at least Twitter and Facebook) and let your customers know that they can DM you for queries and customer service requests.
- Keep these channels engaging by posting regularly to let your customers know that you’re up-to-date and ready to communicate.
- Make sure your customers know they can reach you on social media channels by putting them up on your website.
- Try to solve their problems on the channel they contacted you without referring them to your customer care call center or email. If these young customers know that they can get their problems solved without having to open a support ticket or schedule a call, they are more likely to contact you when the need arises.
Omnichannel Customer Experience
With the current technological advancements and accessible internet, customers can interact with brands via different channels including social media, email, webchat, etc. However, these customers expect the conversation to be continuous which means they can initiate interaction via one channel and complete it via another channel without having to repeat the identification process or start afresh to state their issues.
In order to reconcile this, you’ll need to employ the omnichannel customer experience approach as a customer service strategy so that the customers won’t feel like they are interacting with different brands when they switch channels. Therefore, you need to build a unified process for your customer service so they can enjoy a continuous customer experience regardless of the entry point. However, to make this happen, you’ll need to create a unique identity for each customer so that when they switch channels, they’ll only have to provide this identifier.
It is also advisable to use one customer service team across these channels or probably employ the use of a software that integrates all channels so customers won’t have to explain themselves all over again when they switch channels during the course of finding the solution to their problems.
Picture 3. Create an amazing omnichannel experience with Paldesk
Make Sure There’s Always a Human Touch
Although the digital natives want to get their problems solved on their own, the place of the human touch in your customer service strategy should not be completely overthrown despite the robust nature of your self-service. These customers from time to time will also want some form of human interaction on every channel at their convenience.
63% of millennials who are digital natives have stopped patronizing brands due to lack of quality customer experience dealing with a customer representative who is not knowledgable enough to solve their problems Therefore always integrate your customer service channels with a trained and knowledgeable customer representative who can tell what the customers are doing on your site at the time of contact and can easily pick up from where they stopped in trying to find solution to their problems.
Speed of Service
How fast is your customer service in solving queries? The digital natives who are great at multitasking are used to instant gratification from their online experiences. Since no one likes to be kept on hold, you need to speed up your services since people from this generation are likely to abandon the queue faster.
- Set a time frame within your company for handling each customer query and try to stick with it. For example, a goal for email replies can be 30 minutes.
- Use technology confirmations by setting up automated replies that go out immediately an incoming ticket is received to let the customers know their voice has been heard. This can be done on both email and social media channels.
Video 1. Customer service about compromise
Make Use of the Advantages IoT Offer
The Internet of Things is here to stay and some of its advantages can also be harnessed by your customer service. According to Forbes, the number of IoT connected devices will exceed 50 billion by 2020. With this prediction, customer expectations will further rise and companies will have more advantages also. Since customers will have their devices connected, data can be constantly gathered to gain insight into their usage patterns revealing what they want. With this customer service strategy, you as a brand can find ways to be more proactive with your customer support in a more accurate manner without your customers asking for it first.
Customer Service Strategy is Important
In conclusion, customer support is one way you can have an edge over your competition even when their product seems better. Digital natives want to be sure that they won’t be stranded when they need help while using your product due to long customer service processes especially when it involves leaving their busy schedule. Integrating these customer service strategies into your customer service processes will definitely enhance your customer service experience for digital natives thereby increasing your profit and customer retention rates.