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Using Video to Improve Customer Service Interactions

Most consumers don’t write home—or write on the internet—about receiving phenomenal customer service. But boy they sure do if they’ve had a bad one! Were the products, services or personnel unsatisfactory? If that’s the case, consumers get talking (or typing), and fast. Negative reviews can appear anywhere online, popping up on social media and in general search results. One bad experience does not make a brand, granted, but online “rants” show no sign of slowing down, and can have a huge impact on brand reputation. What should companies do? You certainly can’t delete or ignore negative publicity, and one way to tackle the problem head on, to be proactive rather than reactive, is to consider adding video to your customer service toolbox.

The Value of Face-to-Face Communication

Using video as a customer service tool isn’t a new concept, and some companies today have already taken the plunge into enabling video chats as an option should product issues arise. For example, pressing the Mayday button on a Kindle Fire HDX opens a video chat window where you can talk to a real life Amazon customer support team member. And this person isn’t just going to smile and nod—he/she can see your screen, virtually walk you through trouble-shooting steps, or even just take over and fix the problem entirely while you watch.

It’s clear the face-to-face interaction video provides is quite powerful when it comes to your business. Of course you’ll be able to better connect with your customers, but there’s something else to think about here: As we go through the chain of customer service interactions, we are most likely to express ourselves when the channel is passive. You might not get the same level of complaint through video that you’d get through Facebook, so that can make situations easier to handle. As a plus, the use of live video (like video conferencing and WebRTC applications) are more available and powerful than ever before.

Doing a 180: Turning Mad Customers into Lifetime Customers

Ok, so you’ve remedied the disgruntled customer’s situation. How can you turn what was once irritation into brand loyalty? It’s unlikely to happen over the phone and can be almost impossible through email, but there’s something cathartic about being able to look someone in the eye. You can solve the problem the exact same way you would have through other venues, but the personalization of a video chat can be the icing on the cake for your venting customer. You’ve shown that you care and that your brand is committed to customer happiness—and you’re not just providing lip-service. They’ve seen it on your face as well as heard it in your words. If your team is properly trained and empowered to make sure customers are satisfied, using video for customer service complaints can help you stand out as a company that truly values its consumer base.

It’s also worth mentioning that these customers have the power to share their change of hearts using the same internet they once used against you. You can turn the tables and be on the receiving end of some positive attention.

Other Ways Companies Can Win with Video

Your business doesn’t have to only utilize the power of video to solve an existing problem or correct a situation that’s already happened. What if, instead, you also used video as a tool to proactively prevent problems, and answer questions before they’re even asked? This kind of forethought can leave your customers feeling empowered and really connected with your brand. All that from a few short videos? It’s possible, and here’s how:

Bring your FAQ page to life. Most websites have a frequently asked questions (FAQ) page, and most online browsers are used to navigating them. They’re also used to reading boring bulleted lists and Q&As. Why not shake things up? Make your FAQ page pop with video.

Produce how-to videos for your products or services. The highest searched YouTube videos are “how-tos.” This simple step will save your company time and resources by cutting down on the number of “how do I…” phone calls. And, if the calls do persist anyway, the customer service representative can save precious time by directing the customer to the video.

Share on social. Your customers are on social media, and not attempting to reach them there is a big no-no if you want to keep growing. You can share videos on major social sites like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and of course, YouTube. This helps increase the reach of your content and offers fresh ways to connect with new and potential customers.

If you’re not using video as part of your company’s customer service plan, you should certainly give it some consideration. It can mean more satisfied customers and less web negativity surrounding your business. Plus, you’ll shorten telephone calls and empower your customer service team. Who knows—you might even get a lifelong customer!

Additional Resources on this Topic:

Why You Should Make Facebook Video Part of Your Game Plan
The Top 10 Customer Service Videos on YouTube
More Companies Adding Video to Personalize Online Customer Service

This article was originally seen on Ricoh blog.

Photo Credit: Twin Work & Volunteer via Compfight cc

Daniel Newman

After 12 years of running technology companies including a CEO appointment at the age of 28, I traded the corner office for a chance to drive the discussion on how the digital economy is going to forever change how business is done. I'm an MBA, adjunct business professor and 5x author of best-selling business books including "The Millennial CEO" and "The New Rules of Customer Engagement." Pianist, soccer fan, husband and father, not in that order. Oh and for work...I'm the CEO of Broadsuite Media Group and President of V3 Broadsuite, a family of marketing and media agencies that help companies be found, seen and heard in a cluttered digital world. I also give keynote speeches around the world on the topics such as digital transformation, technology and marketing.