In a world of automation, artificial intelligence, maximum efficiency one would think that businesses would become more and more convenient and valuable for their customers, and in most cases, this is true.
Corporations are making it easier and faster for customers to get their issues resolved and their desired result accomplished. Big corporations often set the precedent for the rest of the market and in this digital age businesses big and small are flocking online to automate their payment processing, sales process, onboarding and customer service.
I beg to question though, at what point does it go too far? As a consumer, ask yourself, is this what we really want? Or is this what corporations want us to want because it’s convenient and cheaper for them?
I recently interviewed business owner Michael Valor and we had an interesting conversation about this concept and the potential consequences of going down this road, he comments, “Well, it’s a lot easier to not care about your customers’ feelings when every encounter they have with your business is automated. It’s basically impossible to get companies like Google or Facebook on the phone nowadays, it’s all through an automated and impersonal customer service system that is laden with automated responses and no real help, or even worse referring people to a 100+ page terms and conditions guideline for answers to important questions.”
Valor goes on to emphasize that small businesses have two choices: 1. Try and follow this trend by creating automations in every facet of your business that model that of major corporations or 2. Use this trend as an opportunity to provide unmatched human service that is only possible for small businesses.
He and his team at Valor Media have decided to go with the latter. I asked Valor, how do you bring humanity back into your business?
“Almost every aspect of the business is human, we’ve taken steps to automate the initial payment of the service because it genuinely makes things easier for our customers but besides that, our clients feel human contact on a weekly basis. The onboarding process is with an Operations Manager that walks them through the onboarding form we have, the customer service is with our Success Catalyst Manager who talks to them weekly on the phone and sends them a Hump Day Huddle text every Wednesday with their stats for the week, and they’re put in a text message thread with the Content Manager, Operations Manager and Success Catalyst where they can expect to get a response within an hour with any inquiry they may have.”
In Social Media Marketing it’s relatively uncommon to be able to retain a customer for more than 6 months, with a client retention rate of over 90% after 7 years, it’s fair to say Valor Media’s human approach to service is working.
Business owners, the ball is in your court! Are you willing to go above and beyond to create a human experience for your clients? In our opinion, In the age of automation, it’s more important than ever that you treat clients like the human beings that they are instead of a number on a spreadsheet.
You can find out more about Valor Media on their website, https://thevalormedia.com/
or their instagram https://instagram.com/valormarketing