The auto-response movement
There is a movement that says if you are not connected to your clients, you are going to lose them. However, how many of you can tell an auto-generated message from a personal message. Is it really important that every company know my birthday and send a note to me recognizing this date.
Most people want to know they have a voice. The last thing they need is another email telling them something they already know. People want to be kept informed and understand more about how your company can make a difference for them.
So if auto responses are not the answer, what is the answer?
In 2013, I learned about the power of invitations. Too often, we make it too hard for people to connect with us. Each year, I work at trying to remove barriers to communication and invite people to connect with our company.
Invite people to call you. Make it easy for people to find you online and on social media sites. Make sure your contact information is posted on everything. Your phone number, email, address information needs to be on your brocuhures, websites, newsletters, emails and reports. People need to know they are welcome to contact your company.
All questions and inquiries must be addressed in a timely manner. Any delays here could deter potential business. How much risk are you willing to take?
Having a strong client service staff is a requirement. These people are the lifeblood of your company. They must have company knowledge and learn more about the clients they serve each day.
Taking time to write and mail a personal note shows someone that you are taking time to recognize someone as an individual and you respect them and you want to continue working with them.
Posting on Social Media…
Make sure you keep a current profile on social media. People are still resistant to tell you they saw or connected with you on social media, but the fact of the matter is that people like to see that you are making sure you keep connected with the community.
Spending your time…
You could spend all your time collecting client data and trying to figure out how to send an auto-response message to your clients through your CRM System. Maybe you send a note regarding new offerings, loss in business, anniversary dates, birthdays, etc. This could take a lot of time, but you will build quite a database. You will need to keep this information updated and make sure you are always working for the most current information.
You could spend this same time, making investments with your client service people, sales people and management and identify your accounts that you want to pay close attention to and take time to write a “personal note” with an invitation for a future meeting or input. The difference here is you keep current with the people who represent companies and divide these tasks up with your workforce team.
Something to think about. Technology is great, but decisions are still made by people and not machines. Until that changes, my focus will always be focused on people.
Image courtesy of Stuart Miles/ FreeDigitalPhotos.net