Whether it's a natural disaster or a troubled connection, it can be difficult to find the best way to let your customers know what is going on during communication outages. Regardless of your approach, here are four recommended practices that your company can put into place to ensure that your connection is successful when needed the most.
The Initial Communication, You Gotta Be Fast
It is important to keep your customers in the loop. Depending on the nature of the outage or the scope of those affected, your initial notification can take any form- a social media post, a customized email, in-app messaging or a maintenance landing page on your company website are among the most popular. Not every incident will call for widespread disclosure, but if your outage is affecting your clients, it is important to act fast and include the following information:
- If known, what's the source of the problem
- What problems the customers should expect to see
- The scope of those affected
- Short-term remedies or workarounds for the issue
- As hard as it may be to admit, the severity (think GREEN, YELLOW or RED themed alerts)
Update, Update, Update!
The second phase of successful customer communication happens when you're actively working on resolving the issue. It is this communication that truly makes or breaks your customer experience. Nothing is worse than toying with their sanity as they anxiously await answers while responding to their own frustrated customers. Be sure to send out any new information as you become aware of it, and make a habit of checking in with those affected in consistent intervals- we recommend every 30 minutes to an hour for critical circumstances.
Use The Right Tone, It'll Spread Like Wildfire
Your customers will appreciate concise and authoritative alerts. When systems are down and operations are negatively affected, no one will appreciate a joking manner. Showing consideration and empathy are surefire ways to effectively communicate and save you from having to call in PR reinforcements down the road.
You might only receive feedback from a fraction of those affected, as 96% of unhappy customers neglect to reach out directly. However, making it a priority to keep customers up to date can go a long way to build customer trust. It also builds anticipation for issue resolution... cue the applause!
When It's All Said And Done... Follow Up
You have fixed the outage and are back to optimal business performance, don't stop there! Keep the lines of communication open and make sure to check in with those affected. Reinforcing the customer relationship even after issue resolution will not only enhance your brand but save you money- it is essentially 30 times cheaper to keep an existing customer than it is to capture a new one.
If your company is putting in place a series of steps to ensure that another outage doesn't take place, let your customers know that too! Post-mortems, typically posted within 72 hours of the resolution, build weakened confidence in your products/services. Like they say, "a setback is a setup for a comeback," so make the most of it.
Good customer communication is only a fraction of your business success. Brands take time to build, make sure your communications system protects your investment.
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Are you interested in looking into outside maintenance? Our maintenance service offerings only begin with 24x7x365 monitoring by our experienced engineers. Ronco understands that each organization is unique and every client requires varying degrees of risk management to support real-time communication environments. To explore our offerings, visit our System Maintenance & Managed Services page or call 888.84.RONCO today!