In today’s highly competitive market, companies must deliver more than flashy products. Along with high-quality goods and services, clients and customers require human connections. One-to-one conversations with customers are at the heart of customer service, but they also represent an excellent and often overlooked marketing opportunity.
In a so-called branded dialogue, agents embody the brand promise of their company. Conducting these dialogues requires training and practice. Agents must learn to appreciate both the company’s marketing strategy and their customers’ needs. Once they acquire this understanding, they will be able to successfully engage in branded conversations with customers.
About Branded Conversations
Branded conversations bridge the gap between brand promises and customer expectations. They successfully incorporate the brand’s value, making it more tangible than simple advertising can convey. The conversations are increasingly replacing paid media channels that were once the norm, allowing companies to learn more about customers’ habits, needs and requests.
Operations workers use branded conversations to translate the company’s marketing goal into day-to-day interactions with customers. Agents’ role is to fulfill the trust customers have towards the brand, focusing in particular on presenting their company in the best possible way. One-to-one branded conversation should therefore be viewed as a means to generate consumer interest and involvement within the process of delivering individualized customer service.
Conversations are usually regarded as a part of the operational customer service process. Many companies do not understand the value of branded conversations. Businesses neglect the importance of mutual co-operation between marketing workers and front-line staff. Consequently, marketing experts focus on paid media channels to convey their message, failing to recognize the marketing potential of one-to-one interaction with their clients.
They do not communicate with the operations workers, and as a result, the operations workers are not a part of their company’s marketing strategy. Agents and front-line staff are constantly under pressure to deliver good service, but receive only poor guidelines and insufficient information to support the brand. This may result in bad marketing, disgruntled clients, and poor customer service.
Some companies may recognize the significance of branded conversations and still have difficulties implementing them. Poorly conducted branded dialogues could lead to an aggressive hard-selling approach that many customers find off-putting. On the other hand, the proper implementation of branded conversations creates unlimited marketing opportunities and satisfied customers.
Conversations between operations workers and customers should reflect the company’s marketing philosophy. Marketing in one-to-one conversations relies on agents’ interpersonal skills to transform daily interactions into efficient branded conversation. Marketing experts must work with operations workers to ensure that these branded conversations fit the overall marketing strategy.
Customer service and front-line staff should be made familiar with their brand positioning, marketing programs, special promotions, and overall marketing strategy. They need to understand the difference between customer conversations that encourage friendly exchange and those that elicit detailed opinions. Different types of conversations should be branded in distinctive ways. A chat-like approach to conversation on matters that people are committed to can seem dismissive.
Operational workers are supposed to know their clients well enough to know what interests them. The clients’ interests are a crucial part of branded dialogues. In addition, the agents should stand by the company’s point of view, but not be aggressive in expressing it.
The Moment of Truth
One of the main aspects of branded conversation are emotions. The significance of emotions is demonstrated in the so-called ‘Moment of Truth’. The moment of truth can be defined as any situation in which the customer forms or changes his/her opinion of a company or its branding. In these situations, a customer is always emotionally charged. Brand identity and brand promise may be compromised at the moment of truth. To avoid compromising the brand’s integrity, the staff should be emotionally available and trained to understand the customers’ emotions.
Powerful brand conversations spring from a passionate position but are open-minded to encourage the exchanges that consumers benefit from. The exchanges that feed a customer’s emotions should be integrated in branded conversations. Operations workers must know what the marketing goal is and what emotions best serve the brand image. Branded conversations rely heavily on emotional intelligence and training that gives proper emotional feedback to clients.
Branded Conversation Requirements
Agents must be familiar with the company’s marketing strategy. They should appreciate customers’ needs and provide proper emotional responses. This requires the employment of psychology and language that facilitates useful exchanges. Most importantly, operational workers need to be able to put themselves in the customers’ shoes. The empathetic approach to problem solving creates trust between companies and their clients. Branded conversations should flow naturally and convey emotion. A properly trained agent familiar with the company’s products, services, marketing strategy and interpersonal skills will naturally conduct branded conversations and gain customer loyalty.
Connecting with clients on a human level is a crucial practice in the modern business world. Daily interactions lead to relationships that work to promote familiarity and good will from consumers. Companies who fail to invite conversations, or define their brand, fail to engage customers. Front-line staff need better training in order to respond to and also challenge what is being said about the brand. The purpose of inviting branded conversation is not only to provide excellent service but to win the loyalty of those who matter most: the customers.
Here, we help companies deliver on their brand promise within the context of daily interactions with clients. We aim to connect marketing experts with operations workers (front-line staff) to create a client-oriented communication system that functions as part of the overall marketing and brand-building efforts. The agents are trained to understand the needs and emotions of their customer audience and take part in the marketing strategy of their company. They learn how to conduct efficient branded dialogues that reflect brand values and leverage their knowledge of the brand and its customers. The result of our training sessions and scenarios are agents that are living the brand they represent.