Customer Service Over The Phone Is A Whole Other Animal

When you’re speaking with customers over the phone, you don’t have the benefit of facial expressions, hand gestures and body language to communicate your points. These non-verbal forms of communication are often heralded as the most potent ways to get a point across.

So what can you do to ensure that you are communicating effectively when the person you’re speaking to can’t see you?

Put yourself in your caller’s shoes.

The first thing you can do is pretend you’re the other person. How would you like to be spoken to? Consider the tone of voice you’re using so that nothing you’re saying comes off as offensive. Be mindful of the words you’re using so that nothing is taken out of context. Don’t forget that you’re a customer too. Your first rule of thumb should be to provide the type of customer service that you would want to receive yourself.

“If you’re working with a customer, either on the phone or in person, and they need something, pretend it’s you,” says Nancy Friedman on TelephoneDoctor.com, “What would you want to have happen? What would make you happy? What would make you satisfied? Here’s a great place to remember the golden rule: “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.”

Laugh it up!

Keeping in mind that body language won’t help you when you’re on the phone, it’s important that the sound of your voice is constantly pleasant. You know what helps with that? Smiling. You may even want to take it one step further and laugh a little bit. Cracking an appropriate joke or two will not only help you to enjoy your work day more, but it will improve the overall customer experience.

“Laughter will lighten the load,” insists Friedman, “Everyone likes to laugh. Some even in the darkest moments. Take the time to laugh and enjoy your customers.”

Be empathetic.

Remember that you can’t frown or show your concern by the look on your face during a phone conversation. As important as it is to keep things light-hearted, not every call is going to be a jovial one. When a caller indicates that he/she has had an unpleasant experience, it’s incredibly important not to pass over the revelation as if it were some insignificant detail. Expressing empathy is a hugely important part of providing excellent customer service over the phone.

“Empathy is the ability to understand or feel what another person is experiencing,” explains Pascal on Userlike.com, “Showing empathy in customer service is essential, because it shows the customer that you care. Jumping straight to the fixing part can make you appear unsympathetic.” Empathy, he later adds, “creates an emotional connection and trust, and shows the intrinsic willingness to offer support.”

At SIClytics, we are big proponents for excellent customer service over the phone. We offer unique services that allow for business owners and call centre managers alike to both monitor and track the progress of their phone agents. For more information about our Telemarketing Reporting and/or Live Call Monitoring services, please don’t hesitate to call us at 1-877-374-6003 or email us at sales@SIClytics.com.

Recalling The Keys To A Telemarketer’s Success

Telemarketing is an industry that requires the most committed of individuals. This is especially true for those who work for businesses that employ cold calling techniques to generate leads. Such telemarketers need to have strong customer service skills. In fact, that’s an understatement. Cold callers need to have the best customer service skills in the business!

As we’ve pointed out in a blog or two in the past, telemarketers face a lot of rejection on a daily basis. Hearing “no” is something that they can’t be dissuaded by. A strong telemarketer is aware that he/she will have to overcome objections the majority of the time. The best know, however, that to overcome objections, a focus must be placed on the customer relationship – more so than the product or service that is being sold.

Focus on customer needs instead of hard selling.

“Customers don’t buy products or services,” informs Susan A. Friedmann on TheBalance.com, “They buy good feelings and solutions to problems. Most customer needs are emotional rather than logical. The more you know your customers, the better you become at anticipating their needs. Communicate regularly so that you are aware of problems or upcoming needs.”

This is why it’s important for sales reps who work on the phone to focus on the specific needs and wants of their potential customers and not the products and services themselves. In other words, pitch what you’re offering by placing emphasis on the benefits your customers will receive. It will make each call sound less like a sales pitch. Providing solutions to problems, as Friedmann mentions, is a key to both higher sales and greater customer satisfaction.

It’s all about listening.

How do you get to truly know your customers? Ask questions. But be sure to allow them time to actually answer. Listen to what they have to say and make note of important details. When you personalize your products and services in ways that make them appear to be made specifically for the customer you’re speaking to, you’ll be well on your way to increased success.

“Take the time to identify customer needs by asking questions and concentrating on what the customer is really saying,” advises Friedmann, “Beware of making assumptions – thinking you intuitively know what the customer wants. Do you know what three things are most important to your customer?”

Don’t forget to smile.

Yes, even when you’re on the phone, a smile can have a huge impact on a conversation. When you’re smiling, your tone of voice automatically becomes more pleasant. Believe it or not, smiles can be “heard”!

“If you are talking to somebody on the telephone then you can still smile – your voice sounds different when you smile and are happy,” reports SkillsYouNeed.com, “Clients and customers are more likely to want to talk to a cheerful person with an enthusiastic personality and by smiling while you talk you can help to project this.”

Looking for ways to ensure you’re employing top telemarketers?

Contact SIClytics for more information about our Telemarketing Reporting services which allow you to report your telemarketers’ progress and track their results. Please don’t hesitate to call us at 1-877-374-6003 or email us at sales@SIClytics.com.

3 Simple Steps To Ensure Your Telemarketing Skills Are A Cut Above

A telemarketer’s job is never easy. This is a sentiment we’ve shared on the SIClytics Blog on many an occasion. Working the phones is a responsibility only the most determined and patient individuals can adequately manage. Especially for cold callers, overcoming objections is a major part of the job. Still having the confidence to get a “yes” when most of your callers respond with “no” is quite the skill.

However, it can also present quite the annoyance. It’s understandable for phone agents to get frustrated when they are constantly being turned down. Being a telemarketer who is expected to hit sales numbers requires a lot of faith in one’s self. It also requires some excellent customer service skills. After all, it’s important to not sound angry or frustrated on the calls that follow objections that couldn’t be overcome.

So what simple steps can you take to ensure that your telemarketing skills are a cut above? Here are three:

1. Smile before you dial.

An excellent telemarketing practice is to keep a mirror in front of you while you’re speaking to your clients and leads. What do you look like when you’re on the phone? Although you can’t be seen by the parties you’re talking to, they can still “hear” you smile. Smiling makes a big difference in your tone and inflections. You can’t help but sound more pleasant when you’re smiling. It will go a long way in helping you to build rapport.

“It almost seems like a cliché, but it really is true that your voice sounds different when you are smiling, and your customers can hear it,” says Baker Communications Founder and CEO, James A. Baker, “The physical act of smiling releases endorphins that improve your mood, so you will be able to approach your job with a better attitude, and respond more positively and sympathetically. Both you and your customers will benefit!”

2. Be a name dropper.

Friends who know public figures and won’t stop talking about them are annoying. This isn’t the kind of name dropping we’re referring to! Be sure to refer to your clients by name when you’re speaking with them on the phone. They’ll appreciate it. It will give your conversations much friendlier tones.

“As soon as you receive a customer’s name, use it,” advises Laura McConney on SkillsYouNeed.com, “Write down the individual’s initials in order to ‘monogram’ the call. This will help you remember the client’s name and will personalize the call for you.”

3. Go easy on the ears.

Some telemarketers get a little too caught up in the knowledge they have of the products and services they sell that they can’t adequately describe them. How so? Too much industry jargon serves to confuse the average listener. You may be an expert in your field, but your leads are not. Take the time to explain the benefits of your offers in a way that are easily understandable. Baker refers to this concept as using the “5 C’s” of good communication.

“It should be clear, complete, concise, concrete, and correct,” he explains, “Make sure that the customer understands your explanation or solution by stating it clearly, describing it briefly but completely, in terms that are specific – and, importantly, that you have all of your facts straight. Providing bad information, or information that the customer doesn’t understand, is both unhelpful and unlikely to leave a good impression.”

For information about SIClytics’ Telemarketing Reporting services, please don’t hesitate to call us at 1-877-374-6003 or email us at sales@SIClytics.com.

3 Ways To Strengthen The Call Centre Manager/Phone Agent Relationship

Call centre work can be gruelling. It isn’t the first time we’ve mentioned it and it certainly won’t be the last. At SIClytics, we have great respect for both phone agents and the managers who oversee their teams, knowing that they work within noise-filled, high-energy, often-hectic environments. Of course, the better that call centre managers are able to work with their phone agents, the more productive the business can be overall.

Are you a call centre manager looking to better your business? Here are three ways to strengthen the call centre manager/phone agent relationship:

1. Begin each day with a light-hearted morning meeting.

This is a simple, yet effective technique that will start each day off right. Naturally, it’s important to highlight the various priorities of your team each day. However, your morning meetings should be made up of as much friendly chatter as it is business-associated discussions. This will help to firstly, lighten the mood and boost the spirits of a potentially otherwise tuned-out audience.

But, secondly, it will encourage your team members to engage in conversations with you, making it easier to have open dialogue about various facets of the job. The more accessible you are to your staff members, the better the relationships will be. And strong relationships in the office enable you to offer feedback that will help to produce better results.

2. Schedule regular one-on-one feedback sessions.

Speaking of feedback, it’s absolutely mandatory within a call centre environment. A big part of a call centre manager’s job is to offer assistance that will help phone agents perform their jobs better. Some managers shy away from this, fearing that constructive criticism will dissuade their employees from trying harder. They fear that pointing out areas of concern will discourage their workers.

Not only is the opposite true (the vast majority of employees want to know how they’re doing), but the regular back and forth will help to grow senses of trust and respect within the call centre manager/phone agent relationship. Don’t forget that one-on-one feedback sessions are also excellent opportunities to get to know your employees better. They will help you to better understand how to communicate in ways that will serve to motivate them to perform at their best.

3. Equip your office with top-of-the-line equipment.

When your employees complain about their working conditions, it’s a reflection on you. To avoid this negative impression, be sure that your office is equipped with comfortable ergonomic chairs, well-functioning computers and cloud-hosted technology that make their jobs easier. We’re referring to such web-based telemarketing software as Lead DaFeeder which allows even the most inexperienced computer users to manage campaign dialing and dispositions.

We’re talking about a system that allows for one-touch dialing, doing away with the archaic practice of manually dialing phone numbers listed on pieces of paper. We’re speaking about an online filing system that enables your staff members to create and save valuable notes on each of their leads. We’re discussing a service that has been proven to enhance effectiveness, drive sales, improve customer satisfaction and provide insight into performance!

For more information about Lead DaFeeder, please don’t hesitate to call us at 1-877-374-6003 or email us at sales@SIClytics.com. Be sure to ask us about our Live Call Monitoring services too!

3 Telemarketing Tips That Make Top Sellers


Your call centre is filled with talented phone agents who all work tirelessly to improve their sales numbers and improve their customer relationships every day. Or is it? Not every telemarketer is blessed with both the patience and know-how to overcome objections, close sales and grow your company’s customer base in the process. That doesn’t mean, however, that those who need a little assistance can’t turn things around.

Here are three telemarketing tips that make top sellers:

1. Limit the temptation to leave your work area.

Phone agents will sometimes use any excuse they can find to get up from their work stations. Bathroom breaks, grabbing snacks, talking to friends – these are all reasons that can draw them off the phones during the course of a day.

Now, let it be said that all of the above are necessary. Everyone deserves to freshen up, stretch their legs, eat and re-energize at different points during the day. The key, however, is for these little breaks to not happen so frequently. They will throw off the momentum of your telemarketers. To help keep them focused, insist that they keep necessities close at hand.

“One of the hardest parts of cold calling is staying focused and resisting the urge to leave your desk or take a break (formal or informal),” writes Will Gemma on Udemy.com, “This probably sounds simple…but stocking up on water, coffee and a snack or two really limits your break options.”

2. Make your script sound unscripted.

It’s of vital importance that you sound natural. You have to take into account the fact that many business owners are on the phone with people all day long – every day. And that includes other telemarketers! What is going to keep your lead on the line with you when he/she is used to hanging up on cold callers? It’s your natural, genuine approach to having a conversation that will do the trick.

On Virtual-Sales.com, Andy Dickens insists that you allow your phone agents to practice what they plan on preaching – so to speak. “Your callers should get plenty of time to rehearse and understand fully what they are calling about, and what they are hoping to gain from the call!” he exclaims, “There should always be room to deviate and improvise from the basic outline of the conversation, your operatives need the flexibility to react to what’s happening in the moment and not get hung up following a strict script.”

3. Make friends with “the gatekeeper”.

A telemarketer’s nightmare is continually getting a secretary on the phone when he/she is calling for the business owner. Many get frustrated at the sound of the wrong person’s voice over and over again. They get especially frustrated when that voice keeps saying that the party being called is “unavailable at the moment”. It’s important not to get too frustrated. When spoken to the right away, these gatekeepers can actually help you.

“The gatekeeper, of course, is the person (a secretary-type figure) who answers the phone when you call a business and decides whether or not they should put you through,” explains Gemma, “These people can be very tricky, but hating them will only sour your relationship…On the contrary, you should take advantage of the situation. The gatekeeper is likely to know a lot of valuable information…They are also likely to know whether or not your services are needed, or which competitor they are currently using, etc.”

At SIClytics, we offer a variety of excellent services that can help you to boost the productivity rates of your phone agents. Our Live Call Monitoring services allow you to instantly listen in, whisper or barge into the live calls that your phone reps are on. That way, you can offer feedback on the spot, vastly improving their chances to close sales and correctly answer questions.

As well, our Telemarketing Reporting services report on the progress of your telemarketers and track their results. For more information about these and other telemarketing-assisting services offered by SIClytics, please don’t hesitate to call us at 1-877-374-6003 or email us at sales@SIClytics.com.

3 Tips For Training New Call Centre Employees

Manager explaining something to his employee in a call centre.
During the always-busy holiday season, customer service is more important than ever. Not only are most customers generally in a rush to get the information they need, there are generally a lot more of them calling your centre in order to get it. Your team needs to be regularly motivated in order to handle the influx of calls that they’re bound to get in the weeks to come. In last week’s blog, we listed a few key ways to keep your team of phone agents motivated.

In this week’s blog, we’d like to take a look at some ways you can train new hires to become part of your already-motivated team. It’s not uncommon for business owners to hire seasonal staff in order to help manage the higher call volumes that are in keeping with the holiday season. If you’re one of those business owners, you’ll need to step up both your hiring and training regimens this week.

Here are three tips for training new call centre employees:

1. Be clear about company goals and directives so as to empower decision making. The best call centre employees are the ones who are able to make sound decisions on behalf of the company. Of course, you’ll want those decisions to be based on what is best for your business. When you properly educate your new hires about your company goals and directives, they will be given the confidence to make decisions without asking for assistance.

“An agent that is provided with the appropriate tools to empower them to make decisions on behalf of the company is crucial,” says Miruna Mitranescu of Aircall, “A highly trained agent with the power of decision will not only ensure higher customer satisfaction, but will also enable single call resolution and thus result in a more positive customer experience. It’s all about encouraging agent buy-in, not only into the value-driven service their employer is providing, but also buy-in to the client brand that they are representing.”

2. Incorporate on-the-job experience. You can keep your new hires in a classroom for a week or two to provide them with as much information as they can handle. Or you can give them on-the-job training. Which of the two do you think will be more effective? There’s nothing like experience to give someone the confidence to do his/her job the right way. Sure, there may be some bumps in the road, but the actual performing of the job will help your new hires to be better equipped for their roles over the long haul.

“Handling calls during the initial training session is an activity that cannot be eliminated from the curriculum,” insists Mitranescu, “It is imperative that the new hires receive practice handling real-time calls. There is no substitute for this experience. Role-play is good, but real call handling is essential. Trainers should make sure that equipment works and is available for each ‘real-time’ call handling session. Operations should make this a priority.”

3. Listen to the calls being taken by your new hires. Once the official training sessions have been completed, be sure to not have your new hires feel like they are being thrown to the wolves. Monitor the calls of your rookie phone agents so that they can be given feedback about how they are handling questions and complaints. This will be an important step in making them comfortable with their abilities in their new positions.

Mitranescu recommends that you encourage upper management to listen to calls and praise your agents for their jobs well done. This will go a long way in boosting both employee morale and confidence. “It’s really important that he upper management team takes time each week to listen to calls and publicly praise the recognised agents with maybe a certificate or gift card for example,” she suggests, “The gents will feel incentivised to do their best.”

At SIClytics, we are big believers in the providing of regular feedback. Our Live Call Monitoring services allow call centre managers to listen to phone calls live and as they happen. In addition to monitoring, managers can whisper information to their agents to help them resolve potential issues on their calls. This helps to improve overall customer satisfaction and employee performance.

For more information about our Live Call Monitoring services, please don’t hesitate to call us at 1-877-374-6003 or email us at sales@SIClytics.com.

5 Ways To Boost Sales In Your Call Centre

Smiling Customer service representative with headset on in a call center

Telemarketing is a tough job. It’s not the first time we’ve stated it and it certainly won’t be the last. There’s a lot to be said about Canadians who make their livings on the phone. They’re required to have a lot of patience, a lot of confidence and lot of tenacity. It’s important for them to be as knowledgeable about the products and services they offer as it is to be friendly and polite. Gaining favour with complete strangers, after all, is no easy feat!

This is why call centre managers have such important jobs. It’s up to them to properly train their phone agents to not only become experts in world of what they’re selling, but to have sharp over-the-phone skills. It is the combination of salesmanship and being a good people person that is the mark of a successful telemarketer. And boosting sales in your call centre will be the mark of your ability to foster that combination.

Here are five ways to boost sales in your call centre:

1. Ensure that your phone agents become products and services experts. If it’s one thing that would-be customers hate, it is company representatives who sound like they don’t know what they’re talking about. Your team members need to attain specific product knowledge that will give them the confidence to answer any questions that come their way. They should be well equipped with information that will help them to impress the leads they speak to.

2. Ensure that your phone agents have strong knowledge about your customer base. Even when your callers know all about the products and services you offer, it’s not enough if they don’t know a lot about who they’re trying to sell to. It’s important to be able to personalize your interactions so that the people being called feel as if their specific needs are being addressed. Having a good understanding of the target audience will go a long way in being able to make them part of your customer base.

3. Put your customers into calling categories. It’s wise to strategically group your customers into categories so that they can be called for the right campaigns. For example, having restaurant owners placed into one group is a great idea so that when you have a specific campaign that caters to their needs, your phone agents can hone in on particular ways to speak to them. Adapting sales approaches based on the customers is necessary to maximize sales.

4. Learn how to speak to humans. In other words, it’s not enough to simply follow a script. Everyone is different and therefore, not everyone is going to respond to the script in the same way. It’s important to be able to touch upon people’s emotional needs. Your team of callers needs to be equipped with members who are adept at empathizing and communicating in ways that let your leads know they are valued and respected as people.

5. Make your interactions personal. Use the customers’ names throughout the calls. Ask questions to learn more about their businesses, interests, likes and dislikes. Find ways to communicate the benefits of your product or service to meet the specific needs of each of your callers. Remember, that each call is about the customer, not your company. Finding a way to help the life of your lead is the best way to secure a sale.

At SIClytics, we offer Lead DaFeeder which has been called a “call centre manager’s dream”. It is an easy-to-use web-based telemarketing software that allows even the most inexperienced computer users to manage campaign dialing and dispositions. It delivers a feature-rich set of processes that enhances effectiveness, improves customer satisfaction and provides insight into performance. Not to mention, it’s a fantastic way to help boost sales in your call centre!

For more information, please don’t hesitate to call us at 1-877-374-6003 or email us at sales@SIClytics.com.

3 Ways To Market Your Small Business Online During The Holidays

depositphotos_34097593_m-2015Can you believe that the holiday shopping season is nearly here? Although we’re not yet halfway through October, it’s the right time to begin thinking about the ways in which you wish to market your small business for the impending holidays. Needless to say, business is about to pick up. However, it’s important to not assume that, simply because more Canadians will be out shopping over the next couple of months, you’ll automatically boost your sales.

You’ll have to ramp up your efforts to get shoppers to come specifically to your business for their holiday shopping needs. In 2016 (almost 2017!), it should be a no-brainer to consider using online methods of marketing for your small business. With the internet being so widely used on a daily basis by so many Canadians, it only makes sense for your small business to strengthen its online presence this holiday season.

What are the best ways to market your small business online during the holidays? Here are three ideas:

1. Create a holiday-themed YouTube video. It’s no secret that people use social media each and every day. YouTube just so happens to be one of the most popular social media platforms out there. Not only can your video help to advertise your new holiday sales, promotions, discounts and in-store events, but it can help to drive traffic to both your website and physical store for many months to come!

This is because YouTube videos have the potential of going viral. The more innovative you make your video, the better the chances are that people will share it on their own social media platforms. Be sure to post your video on your Facebook and Twitter pages among your other profiles and don’t forget to show viewers how fun, original, approachable and inviting your brand is.

2. Include holiday-themed words in your website’s content. Blogs just like this one can help quite a lot with getting people to land on your website when Googling for places to shop during the holidays. And that’s because of all of the extra holiday-themed terms that will appear on your website. It’s all about the magic of content marketing, communicates Adam Binder on CreativeClickMedia.com.

He recommends that you adjust your SEO strategy to include holiday search terms such as “holiday sale” and “free shipping” among many others. “Make adjustments in your blog posts and content, on page SEO and backlinks,” he writes, “Pay attention to what keywords currently drive the most traffic to your website, and nurture holiday version of those. In addition, the holidays are a great way to branch out in regards to your web traffic audience.”

3. Begin a holiday email campaign. Reach out to your current customers by letting them know how much you appreciate their business. Of course, a warm holiday greeting will be a great reason to send an email in the coming weeks as well. Be sure to highlight your best products and services and offer up reasons why coming to your business is the right choice. Keep in mind that your previous customers are the most likely to support your brand again.

It’s wise to offer them special discounts and bonuses to show how much you appreciate their support. You may even want to incentivize them to bring family members and friends to your store by offering significant benefits for their referrals. That way, you’ll foster a larger number of shoppers during the holiday shopping season that you know will have been recommended by others who already have good impressions of your business.

At SIClytics, we know how important it is to pinpoint which of your online marketing strategies are encouraging the most phone calls to your business. By understanding which advertising methods are the most successful, you can better manage your overall advertising budget for years to come. Our Call Tracking services are able to specify which of your advertising methods generate the most phone calls to your business!

For more information, please don’t hesitate to call us at 1-877-374-6003 or email us at sales@SIClytics.com.

3 Ways To Advertise Your Small Business Online

Beautiful charming woman holding a laptop facing the camera with a blank white screen for your text or advertising

As a small business owner, one of your most important jobs is to advertise your company. Even if you’re confident that you offer the best products and/or services in your industry, it will be practically impossible to convince members of the general public of it without some sort of marketing campaign. These days, many small business owners take to social media, among other online avenues, to publicize their companies.

It stands to reason that you should do the same. And while logging in to your social media accounts to post comments and videos as well as engaging with others is always a good idea, there are some other online advertising methods that are worth taking a look into. Obviously, social media use is free. But there are some other effective paid advertising opportunities that the worldwide web has available for you.

Here are three ways to advertise your small business online:

1. Google AdWords. If you’re looking to increase traffic to your company website (and which business owner isn’t?), it’s wise to invest in this Pay Per Click marketing method. On a small daily budget, you can increase your website’s visitors by having your website pop up when online users type in specific keywords. The best part about it is that you don’t pay anything if no one clicks on your website link.

As Google explains, Google Adwords is free to sign up for. You only pay when someone clicks on your ad and visits your website or calls you. “You set your own budget, so your costs will depend on what you are trying to accomplish with your advertising,” they confirm, “Some businesses spend tens of thousands of dollars a month, and others are comfortable investing several hundred.”

2. Facebook Ads. Millions of people use Facebook every day. And, as mentioned earlier, it’s free to do so. However, as a business owner, it’s certainly worth investing a small amount into ads that will reach such a huge audience on a daily basis. With Facebook Ads, you can specifically choose the type of people you want to reach in order to deliver your ads to your target audience. This encourages better results.

Facebook also explains that advertising on their platform helps you to connect with the hundreds of millions of people who visit the site on their mobile devices each day. “More than 700 million people visit Facebook every day on their phones and tablets—and when they do, they see Facebook Ads along with stories from family and friends,” they note, “Because Facebook Ads are placed in the stream of information people view on Facebook, they’re more likely to see your ads and take action.”

3. Content marketing. This tip definitely belongs in the “practice what we preach” category as we update our blog with a new entry every week. It’s important for us to provide online users with viable information that also helps us to develop greater opportunities for our website to be found in search engines. Google looks favourably upon sites that are regularly updated with new content. Click HERE for information on how to hire a talented blogger to update your site!

At SIClytics, we recognize the importance of knowing which of your online ad campaigns are encouraging the most phone calls to your business. That way, you’ll know which marketing methods deserve more of your advertising budget. We offer Call Tracking services that are capable of pinpointing the various advertising methods that generate the phone calls that come into your business!

For more information, please don’t hesitate to call us at 1-877-374-6003 or email us at sales@SIClytics.com.

6 Steps To Providing High-Level Customer Service

Business people with headsets using computers in office

Providing customer service over the phone is a lot different than providing customer service in person. A phone agent doesn’t have the benefit of using body language, facial expressions and hand gestures to communicate his/her message. Instead, he/she must place greater emphasis on tone, inflection and appropriate verbiage in order to have positive interactions with customers. Call centre employees, it’s fair to say, have many steps to take to ensure that they’re providing high-level customer service.

Here are six:

Step #1: Showing respect. Using your customer’s name will go a long way. It’s important to remember to treat customers like people – not sales numbers or dollar signs. In addition, actively listening to the concerns and questions had by your customers will ensure that they are addressed and answered appropriately at the first point of contact. When customers feel that they aren’t being properly listened to, they associate it with disrespect.

Step #2: Displaying professionalism. You’ll likely always be given advice that includes being friendly and polite. But it’s of vital importance that you never forget your role as a representative of your company. Avoid using slang terms or too much joking around. Remember that you have a job to do and satisfying your customers’ needs is a big part of it. Be sure to use appropriate language that is in keeping with your brand and focus on conducting business professionally.

Step #3: Being engaging. We’re not saying that you need to focus on being entertaining whenever you speak to one of your customers or leads – but it certainly doesn’t hurt to be interesting. Utilize your natural charm and wit and feel free to engage in conversations with your customers that will spark their interests. As per our last point, it’s important to stay focused on the task at hand. But customers appreciate it when customer service associates can show their human sides.

Step #4: Maintaining confidence. Customers like to feel that the people they do business with know what they’re talking about. It gives them confidence that they are working with the right company. Being confident doesn’t necessarily mean knowing everything. There may be times when you’ll need assistance with an issue or question. Simply letting your customer know that you’ll get to the bottom of things for him/her no matter what is a display of confidence – even if you admit to need help. Know that you can do your job excellently…and you will!

Step #5: Expressing empathy. This is a major part of providing excellent customer service. Not all of your calls are going to go perfectly. You’re bound to encounter an irate customer from time to time. The key is to not engage in a heated debate. Instead, put yourself in your customer’s shoes and express your understanding for his/her discontent. We’re all customers. When one is upset, it’s your job to be considerate of his/her feelings. Exclaiming your understanding for the frustration can go a long way.

Step #6: Staying honest. Most consumers are very savvy. They know the difference between a fair bargain and a scam. As well, customers are easily put off by putting their trust in someone who doesn’t come through for them. It’s important that you don’t make promises you can’t keep. Be sure to meet all deadlines and delivery dates. If there is an occurrence that will change what was originally promised, reach out to your customer to inform him/her. Your honesty will be appreciated.

At SIClytics, we offer innovative cloud-based services that assist call centre managers in helping their phone agents provide the best customer service possible. Our Monitor Whisper service lets supervisors and managers monitor calls live as they happen, as well as the ability to whisper feedback to their reps during those calls. For more information about SIClytics’ Monitor Whisper service, please don’t hesitate to call us at 1-877-374-6003 or email us at sales@SIClytics.com.