HOW TO EFFECTIVELY RESPOND TO HELP DESK QUERIES
Do Your Help Desk Staff Need ‘Narrative Transportation’?
By Dr David Cox
A common element of any loyalty and incentive program – whether simple short-term promotion or multi-faceted channel marketing program - is the need for an “in tune” customer help desk to handle participant’s queries, comments, aspirations and…. complaints. Whilst the latter is something we all try and avoid, resolving complaints satisfactorily is essential to the success of a program as most participants, particularly the highly-engaged, are often the sponsor firm’s best customers. This is even more critical if the program has a social media component via a Facebook page or Twitter handle. The customer service team of any program, by default must engage in direct dialogue with program participants – both online in a social media environment and in the more confined structure of the program help desk.
Motivforce recently undertook a study looking at the most appropriate and effective way to respond to participant’s feedback – particularly in the social media environment but with direct implications to contained environments. The results revealed that the most effective response is when help desk employees put themselves in the shoes of the customer before they respond. ‘Narrative Transportation’, or the extent to which help desk employees mentally enter the world evoked by a customer’s story, affects help desk employees’ inclination to assume ownership for a participant’s feedback or complaint.
So how do we trigger Narrative Transportation?
We encourage help desk employees to undertake some priming beforehand, such as completing an empathetic word game, studying a picture collage or other stimuli, which helps transport the customer service employee into the customer or program participant’s world.
The Field Study
To test this, Motivforce undertook an extensive field study, where we primed branch managers from a global Fortune 100 banking group with either a self-sufficient, a cognitive, or an empathetic perspective. The results indicate that transportation mediates the effect of perspective-taking on two relevant psychological ownership dimensions: acknowledgment of responsibility and willingness to respond. Participants with a self-sufficient or cognitive perspective neither acknowledge responsibility, nor want to respond. However, participants primed with an empathetic perspective took responsibility for the customer’s case and were willing to respond to the complaint.
Create Visual Cues
Looking for opportunities to assist help desk employees to achieve narrative transportation can be achieved by creating visual cues in the workplace including empathetic screen savers, empathetic word games. It has shown that these small steps are an effective way to ensure that each and every customer query is responded to in the same context and narrative in which they have raised the query, resulting in even more loyalty and commitment to the brand and program.
The future of loyalty programs is mobile. This mantra has been reiterated across many loyalty marketing industry trend reports. It is a mantra that clearly has face value. In fact, it is a no-brainer, as much of our life now revolves around our little handhelds. Most loyalty programs are migrating to mobile platforms, allowing their members instant access any place, any time. Being able to check your points balance, the latest reward additions or quickly swiping through a learning module in a client’s parking lot definitely ups the convenience factor. But, it does not guarantee an engaging mobile program experience. That is why a number of forward-looking brands have started to engage their members by inviting them to share their ‘must-share-moments’ with the brand and explore the face value of the mobile camera.
For the third year in a row Motivforce has struck gold at the 2017 Brandon Hall Excellence Awards with its Know Your IBM channel incentive program, winning the Gold Award for Best Sales Training Program for Extended Enterprise and Gold Award for Best Unique or Innovative Sales Training Program.
In addition, Know Your IBM received a Silver Award for Best Results of a Learning Program; and Bronze for Best Advance in Creating an Extended Enterprise Learning Program.
In our conversations with organizations that are assessing B2B loyalty and incentive programs, a number of negative perceptions inevitably surface.
Here are the top 5 myths about loyalty programs and our evidence as to why they simply aren’t true.
Over the past 20 years, the structure of B2B loyalty programs has grown from simple sales incentives that reward for achieving sales targets to rewarding for profile performance. Profile performance is the concept of creating the ideal participant profile and rewarding for all behaviours that a participant demonstrates in adopting this profile.
There are many variables to consider when creating the ideal channel loyalty program participant profile and these are broadly classified into the following 5 types of loyalty program participant profiles:
Our research has shown greater loyalty (measured by sales and other valued added behaviours) amongst program participants who are active in enablement tasks, compared to those who are not. In looking at correlations between those participants who have undertaken enablement tasks, versus those who have not, we have observed three traits....
A term that we commonly use in channel loyalty and incentive programs is the effort advantage ratio. This is the study of consumer loyalty programs and the effort a participant must undertake to achieve a loyalty program reward and how this effort impacted on attractiveness of the loyalty program for their continued participation.
These are 7 things to consider when weighing up the Effort Advantage Ratio.
Technology is now defining the route which companies need to take in order to stay relevant and is changing at a rate so fast that organisations and to some extent, society is struggling to keep up.
And whilst digital transformation can start with the introduction of new tech, business transformation is inevitable, which can mean a complete overhaul in a company's products, positioning and ultimately, business goals.
Are you thinking; "do enablement & incentive programs build loyalty with Channel partners and resellers?"
If so then here are some key questions to consider if you're thinking about launching a B2B Loyalty Program or even how to re-engineer an existing one
Is a loyalty program right for your business?
Like any marketing strategy, loyalty programs have a place and an ideal environment in which they should be deployed and managed. So, it is important for firms to undertake a detailed diagnostic assessment to see whether a loyalty program is the best marketing strategy for their product or service, as opposed to rushing to set up a program in the hope that it will solve all your business challenges.
Here are 3 reasons why a loyalty program may not be right for your product or industry:
Try these 3 tactics to accelerate the journey from enrollment to engagement in your loyalty program and thus minimize the period that a newly enrolled participant spends in the chasm of disengagement and go into "Walking Dead" status.