Customer Experience

How Can Customer Service Reps Build Rapport Across Different Service Channels?

Building rapport across different channels can be challenging. Here are some tips.

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Today’s customer service reps are connecting with customers on every medium possible: taking phone calls, answering e-mails, and engaging in real-time video and text discussions. Adapting to this range of mediums and staying efficient can be a challenge. One of the most important things a customer service rep can focus on is building a rapport or connection with customers—regardless of the medium. Here are some strategies to support that goal.

Lean into the CRM: A call where the agent immediately connects with the customer is one where the agent is informed. Personalize the greeting, note recent transactions, and more to show that regardless of how the customer is coming into contact with your service organization, he or she is dealing with informed agents who see him or her as a person.

Establish brand tone: Is your brand tone warm and encompassing, or do you approach your customers in a helpful and professional tone? Whatever best reflects your brand should translate to each medium. Even something such as text, which can be brief, can incorporate a more professional tone by the words used, salutations, and more. Define your brand tone, and create a clear set of guidelines for each support medium.

Take the time to get a little personal: Customer service agents are often under tight time constraints because their performance is measured by how efficiently they resolve calls. Yet a personal greeting, asking how a customer’s day is going, and taking the time to find out how his or her relationship with the company is performing can go a long way. Encourage your agents to balance efficiency and warmth to help support that deeper rapport and connection.

Ensure you’ve met their expectations: Another way to connect with customers is to develop a better sense of their expectations. Start the call by asking what they’d like to accomplish today, and end the call by saying you value their time and asking if their needs were met. A survey or an informal check-in can help you assess how you’re doing.

Providing outstanding customer support can be challenging, and building that connection between phone calls, texts, and video chats can be particularly difficult. Take the time to train your team on how to build rapport so customers and prospects have a positive experience when they reach out to customer service.