Write the Best Emails for Your Customers with These 5 Tips
Working in customer service is a very specific trade, made even more demanding by its repetitive nature. It’s crucial to have your best foot forward at all times with the customer or their experience with your company may turn out negative. Even something as simple as writing emails takes a lot more thought than you’d think.
Email is still one of the major customer service touchpoints, with 46% of people preferring email. This is more than twelve times the number of people who expect social media as a contact point.
Contact center work is like clockwork, but in the same way the monotonous day-in day-out nature of it can cause complacency and your agents can easily make mistakes. With the correct fundamentals in place, it is possible to create the best emails for the best customer service experience.
These five tips will help ensure you craft the best emails you can for your customers.
While rapport is an integral part of customer service, there is a certain level of professionalism and polish needed. The email must be polite at all times, with clean English. Business English is the norm but some companies prefer a more informal tone. The important point is to be direct in communicating your message. The purpose of communication is to get the idea across effectively, after all.
Create a Company Tone
Set a company tone and follow it. Much like how an audio company or a music label has a “house sound”, your company should have a tone and style in communications that become your branding.
There is no doubt that strong branding is one of the most important things a company needs to survive in today’s market. All communications from the company are a vehicle to cement that branding in the eyes of consumers.
Train Your Agents on Quality Expectations
Once this company tone is set, make sure there is a style sheet or set of guidelines for your agents to learn and put to heart whenever writing any correspondence. All emails sent to customers are done on behalf of the company and each one should comply with all company guidelines at all times. There is no room for error, especially since the internet is forever and any correspondence sent out is irrevocably permanent.
It is not uncommon to see people suffer the consequences of things they wrote several years prior. We saw what happened with James Gunn (of Guardians of the Galaxy fame) when things he tweeted almost a decade ago got him fired from Disney. Companies can equally be held liable for any email sent out.
Make Use of Automated Emails
The standard turnaround time expectancy for emails is 24 hours. Realistically, you can’t expect your agents to handle the entire volume of emails within minutes of receiving them. For a customer who sent in an important inquiry, 24 hours without feedback can be a very long time. Customer expectations are rising every year.
An automated email sent out the moment the customer puts in the inquiry can go a long way in setting a customer’s mind at ease. It doesn’t need to be anything complicated, but using the company’s tone, you can let the customer know that their inquiry has been received and that you will get back to them.
Give a time frame, set expectations, and it will go a long way in making them feel better about the entire experience.
Keep First Call Resolution a Priority
In this case, First “Contact” Resolution is done through an email. Customers don’t like going back and forth with a company to resolve an issue. That’s why FCR is such an important customer service metric. It’s harder to wrap up an issue in one email than it is in one call, so the metric for email FCR is a little different. You have to be conscious of how many emails it takes to resolve the issue, keeping in mind how long it takes to reply to a customer.
These five tips should get you started on creating a top-notch customer experience. Everyone has their own style, but when working in a company, everyone needs to pull together and learn to work with one voice. Make sure that everyone gets the training and attention they need, and you’ll be killing it with the customer experience in no time.