agency customer experience

 

Consumer expectations have shifted in the age of digital commerce.

  1. Customers expect a connection between all departments of a business.
  2. Customers expect personalization.
  3. Customers expect innovation.
  4. Customers expect data protection.

Today’s customers expect a great experience from start to finish… and beyond.

In a day when many transactions that, at one time, could only be done with in-person interaction can be completed electronically, our interactions with customers are more important than ever.

The agency customer experience we deliver must keep up. We must find a balance between embracing technology and being a valuable asset to our customers. We should strive not simply to do what other agencies are doing better, but rather, to be the only agency doing things a certain way.

How do we do this?

By stepping into the shoes of your customer and viewing your “agency customer experience” from their perspective.

Evaluate all areas of interaction with a customer, for both in-office contacts and all things virtual.

Here are questions to help:

In-office:

  • How are customers greeted when they walk in?
  • Is a refreshment offered/available?
  • Is there a welcoming seating area for guests?
  • How does the office smell?
  • What is the temperature in the office?
  • Are staff presentable?
  • Is the office tidy or cluttered?
  • Is the outside of the office and parking area clean and well-manicured?
  • If a bathroom is available to guests, is it clean and stocked?
  • Is there privacy for conversations with staff and guests?
  • Are customers given all of their paperwork in a neatly-presented manner?
  • Are they given a trinket/promo item of any sort?
  • Are customers asked to give a Referral? What does that process sound like?
  • Are they asked to give a Google review of the Agency? How do they get the link?

Phone/virtual:

  • How are customers greeted when they call?
  • When customers are put on hold, what do they listen to?
  • Are they greeted with a smiling face (even if it’s over the phone)?
  • Are customers informed how they will receive all of their documents?
  • Are they asked to give a Referral? What does that process sound like?
  • Are they asked to give a Google review of the Agency? How do they get the link?

Most importantly…

  • π‘Ύπ’Šπ’π’ π’•π’‰π’†π’š π’“π’†π’Žπ’†π’Žπ’ƒπ’†π’“ 𝒕𝒉e π’†π’™π’‘π’†π’“π’Šπ’†π’π’„π’† 𝒏𝒆𝒙𝒕 π’˜π’†π’†π’Œ?
  • π‘Ύπ’Šπ’π’ π’•π’‰π’†π’Šπ’“ π’†π’™π’‘π’†π’“π’Šπ’†π’π’„π’† 𝒃𝒆 𝒔𝒐 π’Žπ’†π’Žπ’π’“π’‚π’ƒπ’π’† 𝒕𝒉𝒂𝒕 π’•π’‰π’†π’š 𝒂𝒓𝒆 π’Žπ’π’—π’†π’… 𝒕𝒐 π’“π’†π’„π’π’Žπ’Žπ’†π’π’… π’•π’‰π’†π’Šπ’“ π’‡π’‚π’Žπ’Šπ’π’š 𝒂𝒏𝒅 𝒄𝒍𝒐𝒔𝒆𝒔𝒕 π’‡π’“π’Šπ’†π’π’…π’” 𝒕𝒐 π’šπ’π’–?
  • 𝑰𝒔 π’Šπ’• 𝒂 π’„π’π’Žπ’‘π’π’†π’•π’†π’π’š π’…π’Šπ’‡π’‡π’†π’“π’†π’π’• π’†π’™π’‘π’†π’“π’Šπ’†π’π’„π’† 𝒕𝒉𝒂𝒏 π’šπ’π’–π’“ π’„π’π’Žπ’‘π’†π’•π’Šπ’•π’Šπ’π’?

What’s the best way to know if you stand out from your competition?

Secret Shopping!

Twice a year, complete a secret shopping exercise of your competition. Why? The staff turns over and other factors can change how an Agency conducts business. Completing the competitor analysis semi-annually helps you to stay current on how others in your market are operating.

We offer this Secret Shopping Worksheet to walk step-by-step through the process.Β 

We recommend newer staff complete this exercise. It’s not only a good experience, and one that every person working at the Agency should complete, but more seasoned staff members could be recognized at a competitor’s office. Also, be sure to call from a phone number other than the Agency’s number… in case a competitor has caller ID.

Enlisting a family member or friend to conduct your secret shopping is also another way to go about it. Our Secret Shopping Worksheet walks them through the process.Β The preconceived notions of what the person on the other line should or shouldn’t be saying can affect the conversation in a biased way. The outsider’s point of view (the friend or family member) can be advantageous to the results of the shopping exercise.

Then, using your learning from the secret shopping exercise — both good and bad — you can make changes to your agency customer experience to make yours the best out there.

We operate in a highly competitive, commoditized industry. What we sell is intangible. We’re selling a promise. People cannot see, touch, smell, taste, or feel that promise. We must offer them something that makes them feel as though we are providing value.

The differentiating factor we can offer is ourselves and the experience we give them.

Embracing technology is essential to remain relevant in business today. But now, we have to work harder to make our personal touch and personal connection important to the customer.

Think about a small business that you support. What is their customer experience like? What draws you in and makes you want to do business there? What can you use or adapt from that experience to make your own?

Then, take some time to stop and fully experience the dynamic of your office. Look through the eyes of the customer to make note of the subtle things happening. Create an atmosphere that you would feel welcome in if you were visiting your Agency.

 

 

Bonus: Β Always feel short on time? You’ll benefit from the tactic we share in Buffer Blocks: A Time Management Tactic.