More Than Ever, Everyone Counts!

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

What a contrast today to the economy of the 1990's and the early 2000's as those of us in the tech sector, and many other manufacturing industries thought we could do no wrong. We felt invincible as we enjoyed growth of 40% + in sales and profits for a number of years. As we've progressed through the 2K's we've been reminded at many intervals that the economy is dynamic and every upturn is greeted with a downturn and vice versa.

It's hard to ignore that the current banking and financial crisis is unprecedented in most of our lifetimes and professional careers. Many of us have seen many years of earnings erased in just a short couple of weeks in our various retirement planning investments. However the most important play for all of us is what we do next. Will we react like Chicken Little, or like David against Goliath?

I believe that in challenging times - there are basically two types of individuals. The first type shouts "the sky is falling!" as they throw up their hands and run away. The second type of individual is ignited inside to not only survive, but persevere. I believe we must fall into the latter category.

What does this have to do with this blog about email customer service? Lots. Especially in times of tighter economic conditions customer service is king! A slower economy moves a seller's market toward a buyer's market. The value of a new customer rises exponentially. More vendors are competing more aggressively for less customers; whom are looking to maximize their purchase dollars. One quick and easy way to lose a customer is to ignore their email inquiry of your company. Remember, when dealing with sales organizations - many customers prefer email because they can avoid the hassle of being hard-sold by a sales associate over the telephone. But, if you do not respond quickly, they will move to another vendor. In the minds of the email/web savvy customer, response time is a measure of a company's overall stability. The first impression, and sometimes the last.

The unfortunate thing is that if online-enabled companies knew how poorly they were handling their customers email, they wouldn't stand for it. Sometimes we don't know what we don't know, and study after study seems to indicate that companies do not realize they are alienating their customers by mishandling their customer service email.

MailFlow can help reduce or eliminate this problem entirely. If you are using the web and email to reach your customers, you owe it to your organization to honestly assess your ability to handle your customer service email. Especially in challenging times every customer is an important customer.