How to Handle Unresponsive Customers?
by Puneet Kataria, Founder of Customer Success Box
There will be times when your customers go silent without communicating the reasons. It does not necessarily indicate a cold term between you and your client. While it may be frustrating to not get a response from your client, an empathic approach to your client will save you years of effort at this point. Relationships are at the core of all customer interactions, and it’s impossible to have a productive one if all communication is one-sided.
A Customer Success Manager’s job lies at the heart of managing customer relationships. He/she is constantly juggling to find out ways to bring customers back into the fold. In this blog, we will outline some of the strategies CSMs can employ to re-engage customers and establish relationships built on respect.
But first, let’s look at a few reasons that are causing them to become unresponsive customers-
What makes your client become unresponsive?
Stacked up emails
According to a survey report, “between 2014 and 2018, the average office worker received around 90 emails per day and sent around 40.”
This clearly indicated that amongst thousands of emails piled up in your client’s inbox, your email is likely to get unnoticed.
They are waiting for internal feedback
There could be a possible situation when your customer is waiting for a decision to get approved by a higher authority in the middle of a conversation. In this case, the best you can do is patiently wait and keep following up.
They are avoiding you
This situation could be painful. When your customers no longer wish to buy your product or do not want to continue with your product. It might also happen they were about to tell you but couldn’t find the right timing to do so.
In this case, you can assess the situation and move forward.
There could be possibilities when your customers might have heard something negative about your company from friends or family or even online reviews. It’s also possible that they researched your company and found your views are incompatible with theirs due to your business practices or the charities you support.
Strategies to tackle unresponsive customers
Send out Personalized giveaways
Customers feel special when they are shown personalized effort. Find something that interests your customers personally, and maybe send them a handwritten note.
You can also send them customized giveaways, for example, could be autographed books.
Leverage different communication channels
An engagement tactic you can apply alongside all of the recommendations above is to contact customers through different communication channels. An exceptional email that you spent an hour writing is unlikely to connect with a customer who prefers to chat on the phone or someone whose inbox has 1,000 other messages demanding to be read. If you find solid email engagement among your customer base, consider building out automated email triggers to maintain engagement throughout the customer journey.
Go old school
We are never getting older with our standard ways of interaction. Conduct activities such as a wine and dine after EBR (Executive Business Review), or scheduling Team building activities, etc would work out great to get to the executives and spend some time with them without necessarily making it focused on the business, but it makes them more interested in what you have to say when you have to say it.
Even a small team outing after the EBR. Also sometimes you can do scavenger hunts or other things that build within their team, but it also integrates you as part of the team.
Send them well wishes on special occasions
When you’re trying to build relationships, it can’t hurt to show your customers that you see them as more than just a sale. Instead of just sending an introductory message, go the extra mile and add a personal note to it. Use an automated system to send them well wishes on meaningful days like the holidays or even their birthday if you have access to that data.
Resuscitating your Customer Relationships
CSMs are customer-centric by default, making them most compatible for their job regarding customer relationships.But perhaps this is why customer success teams are so hyper-aware of their customer engagement.
More often than not, if you have waited until your customer disengages to the point of the silent treatment, the chances are that you have waited too long to act.
One of your main jobs as a customer success professional is identifying situations before they arise. Thus, if you set proper communication expectations from the very beginning, you can anticipate the warning signs long before anything happens.
Send a Calendar Invite
Calendar invites could do wonders when nothing else seems to work. Of course, that’s something they cannot choose to resist. You may have sent hundreds of invites and only a handful were turned down with no explanation.
Invites can happen in a few ways:
a. Send a Calendar Invite on the First Email
b. Use a Scheduling Tool
c. Send an Invite with the Time You’re Going to Try to Call
Ask Only One Question
Make sure you are not over-spamming with too many questions. Obviously, you need your customers to answer your questions so that you can help them grow. Most of the time customers are always willing to answer your questions but for some reason, if your questions are going unanswered in their inbox, It’s high time you take an action about it.
Professionals in Marketing are familiar with the concept of “call-to-action.” If a page has too many CTAs or links to click, the conversion rates drop down. This is because people get overwhelmed when they see too many options.
Thus it’s always safe to keep it simple.
Give a Multiple Choice List
When you are sending out an email or even a follow-up email, it’s always a good idea to provide your client with a multiple-choice list. Here they can select and accordingly reply to you. The probability of getting a response becomes higher in this case.
Remember to make sure the emails you’re sending out are personalized. Your customers love when you know them and take efforts to solve their problems.
How can CustomerSuccessBox help
Remember, that it will take time, effort, and testing for these re-engagement strategies to work. Since Customer churn is unavoidable in the subscription economy, thus you should be ready to face unresponsive customers. But with the right strategies and mindset, re-engaging your customers isn’t as difficult as it might seem.
A customer success software like CustomerSuccessBox helps you get a 360 view of your customer’s health with insights that allow you to plan your strategies.
CustomerSuccessBox tells you your customer’s behavior at every touchpoint which makes it easy for you to have a better understanding and communication with them.
Original post here
Hakan Ozturk is a Paris-based Customer Success leader with over 15 years of experience in the computer software industry. Passionate about driving growth and delivering value to strategic customers, Hakan has established himself as a trusted industry expert. As the Founder of The Customer Success Café Newsletter and TopCSjobs.com, Hakan provides valuable industry insights and daily-updated job opportunities worldwide in the field of Customer Success. Connect with Hakan to unlock your company’s potential for success.