This is a nice summary by Brenda Anne Ochola at ImpactHub Stockholm of a workshop we delivered as part of the Impact Hub Scaling program on Service Fueled Scaling (read full story here). We covered service as the one of the most important factors for growing businesses today. You really need great service to increase user/customer loyalty.
Increased expectations from users, and how to serve users on a global base have changed withmobile and the 24/7 online behavior. Therefore you need to create a seamless user experience throughout the customer journey.
Read more on working mobile HERE.
Due to the rapid changes in technology, customers are more knowledgeable about what they need in order to fulfill their needs. As a result, they are more eager to get a customized service that would fit their profile and this leads to most of the new services or products being subscription based.
When a small company (or start-up) wants to scale, it is important to learn the art of scaling wisely.The four questions every company should ask themselves when building a global service capability to determine the right size and setup are:
1. When do your customers/ users need you?
– If only during office hours, or evenings, staff according to that.
2. Where are they (the customers/users) located?
– If they are only located in one time-zone, and active during office hours, then your staffing is easy. It is more tricky if hours and time-zones are spread out.
3. What do they need?
– How complex are the questions. How much can be automated or handled with zero line support?
4. What should be the size of your team?
– A small team can be efficient if working with zero-line support/self service in the right way.
Read our guide on how to build your self-service capability
Customers follow a cycle when it comes to getting to know more about your company as illustrated in the diagram below. They declare if they are interested in its offerings, compare their thoughts with their friends, and then finally use it and hopefully become loyal. Most companies are built with a focus on the first half, and might benefit from getting help with the second half so they can keep focusing on their core business.
The customer acquisition phase consists mainly of Marketing and Sales activities, but in order to keep the customer satisfied and loyal you must invest in the service and support part of the cycle.
In customer support, you ought to consider the importance of self-service. This is what users expect to have as their number one priority. For instance, FAQs. There is also an option where the startup gets their support as a service from an external company like The Service Corporation. That allows the startup to focus on their core business during launching and scaling.
To improve your customer support you should: focus on internal visibility and transparency, have the right tools for collaboration, have the right process and systems, appropriate leaders, and proper training.