As digital service solutions become more commonplace, it becomes more challenging to maintain the old one-to-one service paradigm to which most consumers have become accustomed.
For all of the important talk about omnichannel strategies, what often gets lost in the discussion is the feel of customer interactions on digital channels.
In some ways, human psychology is pretty straightforward. We are designed to react to faces, to tone, and to body language (see chapters 44 and 46 of Be Your Customer’s Hero for more). As you remove each of these biological cues, the potential for misunderstanding increases.
Fortunately, when used correctly, technology provides other insights into the customer being assisted. A good CRM provides customer history, contextual data, and a wealth of other information; however, the information can still only replace part of what is lost when nonverbal communication is missing from an interaction.
It is easy to get tunnel vision when evaluating digital customer service, to get so focused on efficiency, immediacy, and cost savings that one forgets that every digital interaction is replacing an interaction that was once one-to-one, voice-to-voice, or face-to-face.
Remember to keep the humanity in your technology; it is the only way to create connection out of interconnection.
By Adam Toporek. Adam Toporek is an internationally recognized customer service expert, keynote speaker, and workshop leader. He is the author of Be Your Customer's Hero: Real-World Tips & Techniques for the Service Front Lines (2015), as well as the founder of the popular Customers That Stick® blog and co-host of the Crack the Customer Code podcast.