7 Tips for Connecting with Your Customers this Holiday Season
That pumpkin spice latte in your hand tells me that you’re already preparing for the most wonderful time of the year. The time when sleigh bells aren’t the only things ringing. The other ringing sound? The phones in every customer service department and for those of us in the industry, it is truly a joyful sound.To capture the joy, you must first separate yourself from all of the other noise. All of that holiday hustle and bustle doesn’t have to come with a price. We believe that it offers an opportunity.

During the holidays – and every day – those of us in the contact center industry are in a unique position to make a difference in the lives of each customer we touch.


By simply focusing on the experience.

We’re all consumers and we know what we want to experience. We know what brings us joy.

We know what we need from others during the holidays and every day. We’re motivated by connections.

So how best to form this connection? It’s the simple things that each person in your contact center has the ability to do now.

  1. Start each customer interaction with a smile that shows through word and deed. The holidays can be hectic, but kindness matters every day.
  2. Recognize them. Each contact center agent can greet a customer by name and ask not just about the current issue, but how a prior purchase worked out. There’s connection to be had in why that last item made the grade – or didn’t.
  3. Make each customer your one and only. Call volume increases over the holidays, but each customer wants to feel that they are valued above all else. Take the time to speak with them, listen to their needs and create solutions.
  4. Be your own calm. The best way to create a positive conversation with a customer is to enter into it positively. Give your agents the training that they need to succeed in conversations during the busy times of the year.
  5. Know what the customer is hearing from your competition. What are they promising? Do they have sales or incentives that you could match? Should you refer a customer elsewhere?
  6. Continue the great dialogue. The conversation doesn’t end with the customer hangs up the phone. Loop them in early and often with shipping or product status updates. Offer them customized incentives later.
  7. Ask how you did. Embrace every opportunity to learn more about an individual customer. Give them the ability to provide their thoughts on the experience they shared with you so that you can offer even more the next time around.

This holiday season, embrace the connection. The experience that you create for each customer truly matters. And don’t take our word for it, 89% of companies expect to compete mainly on the basis of customer experience by 2016, up from 36% five years ago. These brands have stopped thinking in terms of how they get a customer to make a purchase now. They’re instead thinking about how they can make a connection for long-lasting impact. How? By making the holidays representative of the experience customers can expect all year long.

When it comes to ways to inspire holiday delight, make a list, check it twice. Use this holiday season as an opportunity to show how you always deliver excellent customer experiences. It’s a gift that will keep giving all year long.

Image courtesy of Stuart Miles at FreeDigitalPhotos.net.