The cornerstone of customer service is making the people that your business serves feel good about working with you.
This might be difficult when dealing with disgruntled customers, however, the field of psychology provides some great insight to help businesses build strong bonds with their customers.
In fact, there are a number of reasons why you should implement best psychology practices in your business’ customer service protocol.
No, we don’t mean that you need to require your staff members to take Psych 101 classes.
And, no, we don’t mean setting up a cozy room with a couch and a noise machine to listen to customers’ problems, but simply understanding psychology helps customer service professionals be more compassionate and empathetic.
Additionally, by simply understanding the origins of customers’ feelings and behaviors will allow your customer service team to problem solve more effectively.
Here are some basic customer service psychology tips:
1. Don’t Focus on Anger
Generally, customer anger results from unrealized expectations. If a customer is ranting and raving about a product, allow them to vent and get the anger out of their system. Avoid interrupting them as this will only fuel their anger. Once they have blown off steam, recognize that they are upset, and begin asking questions about what they expected, how they arrived at those expectations, and work towards finding a solution.
Although it might be difficult to try to see through their anger, especially while a customer is yelling or causing a scene, it’s important to try to focus on WHY a customer is angry rather than the fact that he or she IS angry.
2. The Atticus Finch
In “To Kill a Mockingbird”, the protagonist Atticus Finch told his children that you can never really understand what a person is going through until you get inside his skin and walk around in it. Similarly, customer service is about understanding your customers’ wants, needs, and putting yourself in their shoes.
A famous example of this principle in action is Sam Walton, owner and founder of Wal-Mart. While planning his business strategy, Mr. Walton literally did the things his customers did, such as dine in family restaurants and stayed in standard hotel rooms.
This idea of modest living kept him in line with customers’ expectations. His determination to find value is why Wal-Mart is a juggernaut today.
The moral of this story is to think about why your customers seek out your products, and what problems those products intend to solve. By truly understanding your customers, you can serve them better.
3. Automate Where Possible
Over the decades, the business world—and customer service—have changed drastically. Thanks to technology, buyer behavior has also changed. As a result, business operations, equipment, and customer service need to evolve. Although it may seem counterintuitive, automation is one solution that leads to greater customer service experiences.
Customers today often want instant gratification. Of course, a person can only help one customer at a time. By automating basic customer service and using simple self-service functions, such as web chat on your website, digital menu boards, and other resources, you immediately improve the overall customer experience.
Furthermore, upgrading your business phone system and equipment will make it easier for your customer service team members to do their jobs, which increases productivity. The increase in productivity and happier customers will surely offset the cost of upgrading your business phone system and make the investment well worth it.
4. Practice Active Listening
There are plenty of other customer service principles that come from psychology. Active listening certainly takes practice, but it is another great example of how psychology plays a role in customer service. Active listening also goes a long way in the world of customer service.
For example, using simple active listening techniques, such as paraphrasing a customer’s request, asking questions, and addressing a customer’s statement and paying attention to his or her feelings, wants, and needs. This not only maintains a level of professionalism, but it also shows customers that you are listening and making a real attempt to understand their needs and solve their problems.
The Power of Psychology
All in all, psychology has a major impact on customer service interactions, and plays a key role in the business world. In summary, it only makes sense to learn more about psychology, incorporate those ideas into your business’ customer service processes, and train your customer service team accordingly.
This will surely resonate well with customers and help your business stand out from the competition. When it comes down to a customer choosing which business best meets their needs, they will surely choose you.
To learn more about how to improve customer service, adopt new solutions, and further accelerate business growth, get in touch with Nextiva today. Nextiva offers a wide range of resources, equipment, and other solutions that meet business’ needs and help them grow.
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