This sounds like an insane question, right? Of course you respond when a customer calls you. Why even ask such a silly question?
I received a voice mail from a customer the other day, and when I called her back she told me that she had tried to call a few other distributors before me, but I was the only one who returned her call. That blows my mind. Do you respond to customers, or prospective customers, when they contact you?
Do you give away money?
First of all, I don’t know who the other distributors were who didn’t call her back, but I want to give them my heart-felt gratitude. If any of them had bothered to call her back then she would have probably ordered with them and they would have earned the profit and commission. Instead, it’s mine, and I’m deeply grateful. She was a very nice lady and deserved the best in customer service.
This was not the first time that I’ve heard this story from a customer. I’ve heard it far too many times over the years and it boggles my mind every time. Why would you be in business as a distributor and not call someone back? Especially when the message said “This is what I want. I’m ready to buy.” It’s easy money.
1 customer well taken care of could be more valuable than $10,000 worth of advertising. - Jim Rohn Click To Tweet
How to Respond to Your Customers
There should be a variety of ways that a prospective customer can reach you. As a Nikken distributor, I can receive leads through Nikken’s website via their contact form or my phone number on my distributor page. I can also receive messages through my own website by phone, email, or comments left on any of my pages or blog posts. I sometimes get messages through Facebook or Twitter as well. It’s great. You want it to be easy for your customers to contact you.
I usually respond to them through the same medium that they contacted me unless they specifically request something different. I will respond to messages that came through Facebook or Twitter by replying directly to the message and suggest that we take it to email because that’s easier for me.
Messages through Nikken’s contact form and comments on my website I will reply to by email. I may also reply to website comments in another comment if I think other visitors to my website may benefit from the question and answer, like if it is a question about a product.
Emails get an email response unless they say they are ready to buy and give me a phone number so that I can call them. I like email because it gives me a complete record of the conversation and I can thoroughly think out my response and have the luxury of crafting it as I go. You don’t get that with the phone.
Courteous treatment will make a customer a walking advertisement. - J. C. Penney Click To Tweet
Handling Customer Phone Calls
I’ll admit it right here. I really don’t like the phone. I only use it when I have to. I will handle everything I can through email for the reasons that I just mentioned. I use text messages to exchange information with my wife when she’s at work. I use Skype to talk to my parents and to work with the people that I’m helping to take their network marketing businesses online.
Customers are pretty much the only people that I talk to on the phone. The phone number that I display on my website is a Google Voice number. I love Google Voice. When a customer dials my phone number, Google answers, records the call (voice mail), and attempts to transcribe the call. Then they email me with the transcription and a link to the recording.
The transcription isn’t great and it can be very entertaining sometimes when I try to read the email. In Google’s defense, most cellphone calls aren’t that clear to begin with and Google’s dictionary probably doesn’t include very many of the product names that my customers are calling me about.
That’s right, I turn my incoming calls into an email. It’s more convenient. I can’t help my customers if they call me while I’m doing my grocery shopping or if I’m out having fun with my family. I don’t have an internet connection in those cases, so I’m limited in what I can do and would probably end up having to write down their number and call them back once I got home anyway.
Customer service is an attitude, not a department. - Mo Hardy Click To Tweet
Scheduling Phone Time
One of the tips that you sometimes here from time management gurus is to schedule certain times of day when you replay to phone calls and emails. I think it depends on what you do. If you get a lot of phone calls and you do work that requires for focus for extended periods of time, the I think scheduling time to handle the phone and email is a great idea.
I don’t usually spend more than thirty minutes or so on any given task at a time and I don’t get a lot of email (other than spam) or phone calls, so I generally clear out my email when switching between tasks. That allows me to get to any customer contacts in a reasonable amount of time so that I can make sure that I’m giving the best customer service that I can.
How Do You Take Care of Your Customers?
Those are my thoughts and how I take care of my customers. It doesn’t appear that everyone in my company, or in network marketing as a whole, agrees with that.
What are your thoughts on providing customer service? Do you call back right away, at scheduled times, or not at all? Share in a comment below. I would also appreciate it if you would take just a moment and share this with your followers on Facebook and Twitter.