The other day I was working with a student of mine, helping her write her own music and explore the mysteries of music theory. While she is a talented and diligent musician, she kept encountering obstacles in her work. There were tunes she couldn't figure out how to start, and other tunes she couldn't pull together at the end.
That's simply the nature of creating music. Some days the process is too much to take in - overwhelming to the ears. Some days, all sounds seem too plain – blending all together.
As I watched my student experiment, try, fail, and try again, I couldn't help but draw a comparison between her songwriting journey and the process many organizations go through when refining their customer experience strategies.
By taking these tips from the music world, customer engagement professionals can tune up their processes and achieve outstanding results.
Don't keep replaying the oldies
Like creating a memorable composition, mastering a notable customer experience requires a lot of thought, discipline and dedication. Both art forms are dynamic and shifting, and successful professionals are willing to adapt and evolve in conjunction with their craft.
If you formed a band today and chose a look and sound straight from the 1980's, you would undoubtedly seem dated. Audiences wouldn't take you too seriously, and at best you'd likely be working the wedding band circuit. Even popular bands who achieved success in the past maintain relevance by refreshing their sound every few years, while those who don't risk fading into obscurity.
Companies failing to move past simple, traditional customer service styles are just like '80s-style musicians playing to a modern audience: While they may have topped the charts 30 years ago, they aren't gaining news audiences. Unfortunately, many customer service departments are still trying to pass off their dated efforts as hip new songs - much to the disappointment of consumers. In a recent poll by ThinkJar, 85 percent of customer churn due to poor service/experience was deemed completely preventable.
People want a new song—it's time to change things up.
Compose using 'counterpoint'
In the music world, one of the best ways to build a strong, memorable song is through a technique called "counterpoint". This composition style involves playing multiple melodies at the same time that work together in harmony. All the melodies adhere to rules that flow through multiple channels, allowing them to end at the same time with complete and beautiful resolution.
In customer service terms, "counterpoint" translates into "omnichannel." Just as all the different harmonies are able to settle into one streamlined tune, cross-channel customer service communications should culminate in one comprehensive solution.
Your customers should be able to start and end the customer experience in the channels of their choice. If they initially report a problem via a service line and then want to follow up over email, the channel change shouldn't hinder their ability to receive outstanding service throughout their entire journey. Set up clear and concise rules so that your Customer Service representatives can provide consistently accurate assistance to clients, regardless of where inquiries enter your organization.
If you're relying on an overplayed or irrelevant servicing method, I urge you start crafting a new tune. Only 1 in 26 unhappy customers complain. The rest churn…or change the station.
Ben Barton is a Call Center & Customer Experience Executive at Pegasystems.