Traditional organizational structures are not well-suited for modern customer service strategies. The best customer service strategies are embraced by companies with more fluid boundaries between different departments and functions. One example of this trend is the integration of content marketing and customer service.
In 2013, SalesForce author Jason Boies wrote a great article on the intersection between content marketing and customer service. This was a novel concept at the time that has gained popularity in recent years.
Your company should utilize your content marketing strategy to get the most of your customer service personnel. There are numerous ways that content marketing can complement your customer service approach. Here are some ideas to consider.
Content marketing improves customer satisfaction by promoting self-service (which customers want)
Many companies operate under the misconception that the best customer service approach hinges on a large team of committed customer service professionals. They are under the impression that customers want a trained professional to answer all of their inquiries.
The reality is that customers would rather resolve their issues on their own. One poll by Forrester discovered that 72% of all customers would rather find answers on the company’s website than from a customer service professional.
Unfortunately, many companies don’t make it easy enough for customers. A separate study found that 50% of customers are unable to find the answers to their questions on the company website.
A sound content marketing strategy makes it easier for customers to find this information. Here are some important elements of a content marketing strategy that is implemented with customer service goals in mind:
- You should have a clear understanding of all major concerns that customers will bring up.
- You should dedicate an entire webpage to answering broader questions. These pages might have answers to more specific questions as well. You can use a drop-down menu, hyperlinked headers or other page elements to organize them.
- You will need he well-structured content silo to organize these pages. You might accomplish this by having a top-level menu that references general problems customers face. This menu can have a drop-down menu to more specific problems, which will help customers search for the answer they are looking for.
Here is an example of a content marketing approach to supplement the customer service functions of a dental practice.
The website might have a menu with a link to frequently asked questions. When a customer hovers their mouse over this link, it might have a child menu drop down with links to the following categories:
- Questions about billing practices
- Information about accepted insurance plans
- Details about common dental issues and procedures
The first two categories might be able to be addressed with a single webpage. However, the questions people have about dental procedures and ailments would probably be too detailed to be answered on a single page. Therefore, you might want to have this menu item link to a page listing various dental conditions with links to pages on each. Each page could provide detailed answers to come in questions about those conditions, including symptoms, treatment options and expected recovery times.
Content marketing can make it easier to train your customer service team
Content marketing isn’t just useful for educating your customers. You can also use content to educate members of your customer service team.
HubSpot has shared some ways that this can be done. One option is to create monthly digests on conversations with customers. You can use this information to educate your customer service team about the common questions customers will ask. This will help the be more responsive to questions customers will ask. You can also report discussions customers had with chatbots, which will be equally invaluable.
Using content marketing to supplement customer service takes pressure off of your customer service team
When customer service departments are burdened with numerous, routine questions, they are going to have difficulty providing quality, timely service to their customers. They can do their job much more effectively by ensuring customers can seek answers on their own.
If you use content marketing to assist your customers, then you can have a leaner and more reliable customer service team. You should get better reception from your customers as a result.
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