Brands stressing the importance of customer care is certainly not new, but whether enough practice what they preach is up for debate.
Businesses are now required to care for their customers in a more holistic manner – offering a genuine and sincere atmosphere that surrounds the individual on every stretch of their purchase journey.
But a new study from Mblox argues that companies could be blind to a discrepancy between how well they think they’re doing in the area of customer service and the situation at hand.
The SMS group surveyed 1,650 consumers across the US, UK and Australia to find that only 36% of respondents feel they are being well cared for by the companies they connect with. And with 73% of 550 business representatives claiming to be progressing well in this area, it may be that companies are failing to back up their thoughts and promises on care.
Care powers experiences
Customer service remains one of the most hotly debated topics in business, and Mblox CEO Tom Cotney is of the opinion that caring for people is the way to build loyalty around a brand.
“The disciplines of customer service, marketing and information technology are converging, and the more holistic concept of the customer experience has emerged,” he commented.
“A company’s ability to demonstrate care in a way that resonates with its customers is essential to creating positive brand experiences, establishing healthy relationships and achieving long-term success.”
In terms of care ratings by vertical, Mblox findings show that healthcare firms are leading the pack with 44% of their customers declaring positivity about the way they’re treated.
Retailers have room for improvement on 41%, but not as much as insurance and telecom/utility companies on 33% and 28% respectively.
An improvement in customer service may start with an effort to enhance lines of communication. Mblox’s study showed that 57% of consumers prefer to receive email communications from a brand, more than any other channel.
Text messages were voted for by 41% of the group, with phone calls making an entry in third. But it was later down the list where some of the more surprising revelations came to light
Despite many touting social networks to be the key to good customer service, the likes of Facebook and Twitter found themselves lower than voicemail in terms of preference for receiving brand communications, with apps finishing just behind.
Mblox urged companies to think beyond marketing messages when using these channels to connect with their audiences, stressing that developing customer care must be a priority in any communications strategy.