Today, the concept of being “proactive” is successfully applied in various industries and fields of business, whether it's marketing or management. This term implies dynamic action aimed at staying ahead of competitors.
The term “proactive” was taken from psychology, where it is applied to persons who feel responsible for everything that happens. A proactive individual is not looking for the cause of what is happening in the current circumstances, or at other people, but takes full responsibility. He does not follow current events, but rather strives to get ahead of them and predict what will come next.
In other words, proactive sales service is the ability to effectively manage the situation and take appropriate measures without waiting for potential negative consequences. Guidelines aimed at the prevention of adverse events allows a proper, and, most importantly, timely response to uncommon situations. That is why this approach is progressively used in customer service systems.
Current practice shows that proactive service can significantly reduce expenses (by about 66%) of after-sales customer service and solutions. Thus, this approach is not only a way to win the loyalty of the consumers, but it is also the excellent opportunity to optimize the administration costs of the business.
Not only costs cutting - competitive advantages of proactive service
As for the benefits, advantages and costs optimization factor of proactive service, there are several key factors:
- Ability to respond to a situation quickly and with maximum effectiveness – you do not have to understand every situation "from scratch";
- Communication aimed at preventing possible problems is the best way to increase the loyalty of your customers;
- Your competence and timely response will be a pleasant surprise for the customers;
- Reducing the number of customers’ complaints reduces stress for the team.
Based on existing business experience, it is consistent to choose more traditional structures and approaches in the organization of proactive service, in particular:
1. A clear understanding of what can happen with the customer and the respective appropriate actions to take.
The patient of a medical center always makes an appointment in the morning office hours, but suddenly asks to reschedule the visit at a later time. Accordingly, the administrator must be ready to reschedule the appointment and offer a more suitable time.
2. Predicting the possible course of events and taking the appropriate measures to prevent customer complaints.
A company selling bicycles and related accessories, in anticipation of the winter months, informs clients about maintenance of cycle batteries in the idle season. As a result, customers are advised of possible negative consequences, and the company is able to sell more battery chargers.
3. Analysis of previous negative experiences and interactions with the client and identification of possible negative outcomes (due to the fault of third parties or the client).
In order for a previously booked appointment to be held, the company sends its customers a confirmation message. As a result, the clients gain confidence in the forthcoming appointment and the planned matter will not be disrupted.
How to implement proactive sales service correctly
The procedure for the implementation of proactive service might seem simple enough. However, for it to work successfully, your business must have certain characteristics. In particular, for the proper implementation of proactive customer service with the aim of service costs optimization, it is necessary to provide the following conditions:
- Your customers should be duly recorded in your client database;
- You must use appropriate software for identifying the most frequent client problems;
- The Sales and Marketing departments need to work efficiently to notify the client about possible adverse events and look for effective solutions;
- To manage the client's behavioral factors, you should get their full consent for cooperation with you.
Only under the above conditions is it possible to develop and implement effective proactive customer service.
How to start implementing proactive service and evaluate the effects of optimization of service costs
You can start implementing proactive client service according to the following outline:
- Make an approximate plan of interaction with clients. You need to find out what difficulties and problems customers may face. Decide what information is necessary to give to the staff members responsible for to be able to making suitable feedbacks and notices of possible difficulties to customers.
- It is essential to provide employees with feedback from clients so that you will be able to get as much info as possible on the potential clients and problems arising from the interaction.
- Conduct a thorough analysis of the work of customer service and customer support. This will identify the problem areas and the difficulties customers may encounter and which can be prevented.
In any case, it is much more effective to prepare appropriate measures in order to prevent a difficulty than to allow such situation to happen and then desperately search for a way out. In this situation you waste not only your precious time and resources, you also you’re risking your customer’s loyalty, and therefore your own earnings are negatively influenced by the unnecessary costs. This once again proves that a proactive approach to customer service is a critical element of business.
The ways on how to develop and implement the elements of effective customer servicer which result costs optimization – please see the list of courses offered by our Institute. At Atton we are fully aware of all the elements and factors of best client’s service essentials and our education programs are perfectly designed for all types of businesses in the UAE and abroad.