Role of Customer Service in Marketing

customer service

Photo by Pixabay

“Customer service is the new marketing.” – Derek Sivers

Marketing as a department is all-inclusive. It is all about the customers and the perceptions they form. Starting from advertisements and promotions, the communiqués they receive from the company to the customer service imparted, are all part of the marketing strategy. However, customer service is an ignored realm or treated as unimportant in the marketing area by some companies. In this guide, we’ll be showing you the role of customer service in marketing. In fact, you can use a tool to serve your customers better. For example, the interactive decision trees tool helps customer service teams improve customer satisfaction for your new or existing customers.

So, let’s get started.

Role of Customer Service in Marketing

The expectations of existing customers and prospective ones begin when they make the first connection with the company. Therefore, the role of customer service in marketing is inseparable. Customers need to perceive service. Whether they are hanging on to promises and perceptions, or basing their view of the company on actual experience. While prospective customers may be apprehensive, they still have some expectations. On the other hand, existing customers leave no room for doubt that they demand exceptional customer service at all times.

The role of customer service in marketing is one of assurance and reassurance for prospective and existing customers, respectively. Remember, even the best marketing strategies would fail if customers believe that service is shoddy. Based on what they receive as service, they will form perceptions. These perceptions can make customers be attracted to the company, or not. Also, they would be sure to let others know about the kind of service they received.

Create relationships with customers

It would, therefore, be prudent to treat the role of customer service in marketing as necessary and crucial. Customers do not engage in business with a company only because of the promotional and marketing activities. The role of customer service is to increase affinity, product use, deliver on promises, create and enhance memorable experiences, and forge long-lasting bonds with customers. A company will always have at least two sets of customers. As mentioned above, each set would need to be served and managed with separate sets of strategies.

Improves customer experience

Considering that customers are the very reason that companies exist, it is strange that their value is so under-utilized. It would be helpful if companies were to make customer service central to all functions/departments (including marketing). Whichever team the customer interacts with, they should receive the attention and care they deserve. It can be frustrating for customers to receive dull and incomplete information when interacting with a company. It is even worse when they have to make several connections before they receive what they want.

This is reason enough to make customers leave a company and never return. Integrating the role of customer service in marketing ensures that customers receive great service and have pleasant experiences with the company right from the start of the relationship. Even if the prospective customer does not use the company’s products, they are likely to recommend it to others based on the services they received from the marketing personnel.

Retain customers

The role of customer service cannot be limited to the ‘customer service team’ per se. While the company may have products and services which satisfy customer needs, they may not be sufficient to keep the customers engaged for long. It is only through consistent and exceptional customer service that companies can hope to retain customers. The role of customer service in marketing is then one of displaying differentiation. They manage the company’s reputation by focusing on the customer. Customer service lets the customer know that their journey with the company will be easy and pleasurable. Also, the pleasant experience does not just stop after the buying.

Engaging with customers

The other role of customer service in marketing encompasses genuinely listening and communicating with customers. Customers are amenable to sharing information, personal data, and feedback. That is if they believe that the company is truly interested in meeting their needs and demands. The marketing must be able to deliver the right message to the customer. It is through a proper understanding of the target audience that they are able to put together effective and customized content.

Understanding the customer is the very basis of customer service. Using real examples from existing customer experiences raises the confidence of the target audience in the company and the products. The role of customer service in marketing is also one of learning. The communication lines with the customer should always be open and transparent. The marketing personnel should inculcate the habit of regularly reaching out to the customer to understand their issues and problems. They should provide possible solutions and alternatives to address those. This cannot be the responsibility of only the actual customer service teams.

Understand a customer’s journey

The fact is, in the customer’s journey, an important portion is the customer experience in the company. Now, this goes beyond the products and offerings. The customer service role is to support the marketing team’s claims and promises. They create experiences for the customer that they will want to provide repeat business to the company. In their customer service role, marketing personnel must receive training beyond their core marketing skills too. They must receive training to – assist the customers in using the products, handle any minor repairs or complaints, remotely troubleshoot any problems, create financial packages that would make for easy payment for the customer, and be part of the complaint resolution process.

Provide exceptional services

Customer experience has an impact on the customer’s perception of the company and the overall impression of the brand. The role of customer service in marketing is to uphold the high opinion customers may have by providing stellar service. In the current scenario, companies cannot hope to compete and be successful based only on their offerings. Shoddy service would have customers scurrying in the opposite direction and straight to the company’s competitors. Given the trend of similar products and rising competition, the role of customer service will soon acquire the status of being the most significant and unique ‘offering’ of any company. It distinguishes the company from the other players in marketing.

Responsiveness in customer service

The role of customer service in marketing dictates swift responsiveness on the part of the personnel. It remains critical to the success of any marketing and promotional drive of the company. Customer service as a role and function has evolved – there is no doubt about that. Companies are providing more focus and investing more resources into this function. It ensures that they have the most creative and innovative methods and strategies that attract, retain, and encourage loyalty in customers. Loyal customers are also profitable and do a great job as brand ambassadors for a company.

Bottom Line

The prime role of customer service in marketing is to show the customers, in the earliest stages of their relationship with the company, that the focus of the company is on helping them and meeting their needs. It is about thanking them for their business, feedback, and time. They show customers that they are valuable to your company. What role does customer service play in your company’s marketing activities?

Create interactive decision trees for customer service management, cold call scripts or self-service. Improve sales performance metrics and customer delight across your call centers.

Interactive Decision Tree