Hello, and welcome to the Blog.
Technical Support and Customer Service interactions are going on all around us, all the time.
Every day, thousands of people reach out for help with a product or service.They connect to the vendors, and support entities that represent them. Just as there can be a variety of products to support, there is also variety of customer types. And like those, there are also a variety of methods to connect and engage with the businesses you buy from.
The telephone. A seemingly timeless, stylish and direct mode of communication. Businesses advertise a number, and their customers or prospects could dial in and have a conversation. In technical support businesses, it’s often used for triage tasks and tier 1 work. Callers could expect all manner of billing, access, and basic usage assistance over a call to support. And with new cellular devices being released every year, it feels certain we’ll see telephone support for a long time to come.
Email. Email’s only been popular for a little over 20 years. Despite that, it remains a critical contact medium for so many services and industries. In technical support, email is often represented in tickets. A help desk parses tickets which are submitted via email, and submitted to the appropriate department. Agents view tickets and work to resolve the issue, and when they’re done they reply to the customer. The customer receives that response via email, and everyone gets a digital copy of the exchange. And so, it ix best for documenting complex issues. Even today, email remains a primary contact method.
A contemporary piece.
Chat Support arrived in the early 2000’s. Something new, it offered the text convenience of email, while offering the live component of a phone call. While a telephone can handle but a single caller at one time, agents doing chat support could talk with two, or possibly more customers at the same time! For support companies, it offered efficiency gains while users had more choice. Customers who didn’t prefer to talk on the phone would have an option that gave timely assistance but without the trappings of a traditional phone call.
All of what’s come before has created a base. Upon it, society has built a multi-layered customer experience. Phones, chats, emails all thrive and allow customers and businesses to move forward. Social media marries the customer service perspective to a public forum – while SMS further expands upon the groundwork laid in phone and email support. As choice increases, businesses can refine the information they glean from the experiences. And with more experiences to choose from it becomes a more accurate task in finding what works best. Traditional technical support fields will likely continue leaning on classic and contemporary contact mediums.
I have a feeling we aren’t done finding more ways for customers and businesses to connect. Besides using our words, we can communicate in images and video. Likes, dislikes, comments, and posts. Over time and as new technologies emerge, we may very well have new customer experiences. And the ones we hold dear today may become forgotten relics of the past.
It means a lot.
And so, more businesses in more industries are honing what contact models work best for them. What works for one may not do so well for another. Which is fine. The important thing is to try. If you want to connect with your customers, you will – and you’ll do just fine.