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Virtual Telephone Numbers

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Have you wondered about what virtual telephone numbers are and how to get them for your business or personal use? In this article, we’ll cover those topics, as well as the many benefits that come with using them today!

What are Virtual Telephone Numbers?

In the most simple sense, virtual telephone numbers put two parties in contact with one another by phone no matter where either party is located. Using the power of the Internet — particularly VoIP technology and the cloud — calls can be transmitted between businesses and customers seamlessly.

To give you an example of how virtual numbers can augment your business, suppose you run a business based in the United States, but you’re looking to expand to the Netherlands. In order to get in contact with Netherlands-based businesses and customers, you would have to a) set up a physical presence in the country, or b) offer lines of communication. Of course, setting up a brick and mortar operation in a foreign country comes with a host of challenges and setbacks, including hiring staff and leasing property, as well as following the country and municipality’s guidelines — all before gaining a profit. Then, if you simply offer your domestic lines of communication, even a domestic toll free number, those calls may be rejected by the country’s service provider or they may charge callers long-distance fees for contacting your business. As a solution, these numbers enable callers to reach your business without obstruction. And with 21st century technology, particularly virtual locations and virtual offices, your business can circumvent setting up a branch office in the Netherlands. Instead, you can use virtual methods to process transactions and virtual telephone numbers to handle the lines of communication.

Types of Virtual Phone Numbers

There are a number of different types of virtual telephone numbers available for business owners and individuals. For instance, you may want to offer toll free calling to your business to build authenticity and give your business a professional sheen. With virtual phone numbers, you can use ITFS numbers (“International Toll Free Service”) and UIFN (“Universal International Freephone) to extend a toll free virtual telephone number service — which is a viable method to ensure that international callers aren’t blocked by their service provider and/or charged long-distance fees.

There is also a marketing component of virtual numbers that can be particularly useful. First, by subscribing to a vanity virtual telephone number, you can incorporate phone numbers with a visually-appealing set of digits that you can use in your marketing materials. This can exponentiate your exposure and create a wider brand awareness than traditional marketing methods or advertising with your domestic telephone number.

Geographic agnosticism is another key benefit to using virtual telephone numbers. As an international business owner, you may want to broaden your audience while not spending capital on setting up a brick & mortar location in a country. Instead, virtual telephone numbers are available in 140+ countries from United World Telecom. This means that you can tailor your line of communication to reflect a particular region – like using an Ireland phone number when you fly in for business or to keep in touch with loved ones without having to pay long-distance fees.

Of course, virtual telephone numbers grow with the development of cloud computing, so there are new add-ons and features that can be used to augment how your business processes inbound calls and contacts clients directly. Popular add-ons include “time of day routing,” “simultaneous ringing,” and “CallMeClick,” an add-on that embraces the increasing trend towards mobile-only communication.

Getting a virtual phone number
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How to Get a Virtual Phone Numbers from United World Telecom

First, navigate to United World Telecom’s home page. There, you’ll find a number of types of virtual telephone numbers to choose from. By clicking on the appropriate one, you’ll be redirected to a webpage with a list of dropdown menus. These dropdown menus are organized in two parts: your virtual number and your destination phone number. You’ll want to select the appropriate country from a list of over 140 countries around the world. Once you’ve selected that, you’ll choose which type of phone number works best for your company (toll free, vanity numbers, geographic, etc). After choosing the type of phone number, you will either a) choose from a list of available phone numbers, or b) be given one upon activation.

Next, you’ll be presented with United World Telecom’s choice of payment plans, followed by the option to add more features to your virtual phone number, including call recording and outbound calling. After selecting each accordingly, the process is relatively straightforward. Simply fill in your contact information, billing and payment methods, review the terms & conditions and review your purchase. Also, note that you can purchase additional virtual telephone numbers as needed, which repeats the process.

ITFS Numbers

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In an increasingly competitive market, business owners must keep up with new advances in technology and strategies to stay ahead of the competition. The area of communication between customers and those who work within an organization is by far one of the most critical. Facilitating communication with customers in every way possible is the first step.

Toll free numbers allow callers to reach your business at no cost to them. This is a huge draw for customers, as toll free numbers portray the image of an established company and also send a clear message to the company’s customer base that their calls are so important that the company is willing to pay for them.

International toll free service numbers, also referred to as ITFS numbers, are the international equivalent of a United States toll free number in that they allow someone to call a business and the business pays for the call. With ITFS numbers, your customers in one country can make toll free calls that can be received in another country.

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For business owners that wish to expand their business to another country or have already expanded and are physically located outside of their business location, providing international clients a better way to contact your company will help to build loyalty to your brand. Research indicates that if your company is easier to communicate with, then the chances of a customer continuing to do repeat business with you, as well as refer friends and family to your business, increases.

Our Process

The process of acquiring ITFS numbers is fairly simple. It does not require a hefty amount of upfront costs. Typically, ITFS numbers are virtual phone numbers that can be forwarded to your existing phone line. United World Telecom offers ITFS numbers, as well as many corresponding features to work with these numbers. Some of those features include email, fax, SMS messaging, customized greetings, outbound calling, unlimited extensions, rollover minutes, simultaneous ringing, sequential forwarding, and many more.

The use of ITFS numbers makes it easier to operate on an international scale. For example, if you are located in the United States and customers need to reach you in Australia, you can provide them with Australian ITFS numbers and the calls from your Australian customers will be seamlessly forwarded to your offices in the United States. Calls may be forwarded to a landline or a mobile phone line of your choosing.

ITFS numbers help to increase your international reach and will help to boost your overall brand image on a global scale. These are two key factors in achieving success with an international expansion.

United World Telecom offers a variety of options for virtual phone numbers, including ITFS numbers. United World Telecom provides virtual phone numbers in over 150 countries worldwide and has been working in the area of global communications for over two decades. Though United World Telecom offers a variety of communication options for both business and personal use, business communication alternatives are a primary focus for UWT.

Benefits of ITFS

Ultimately, the benefits of using ITFS numbers are that they will improve the overall brand strength and drive more business to your organization. It is much more likely that a customer will reach out to you if they are not responsible for any fees related to the phone call. More access to your organization means a higher chance of sales and greater opportunities for an increase in overall success.

If you have been considering expanding your business to other countries outside of your home country, contact United World Telecom for a full review of ITFS number options and how turning to these options can benefit your specific company directly.

Getting a Toll Free Number for Your Business is Easy

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Getting a toll free number for your business is a convenient way to boost your communication with your customers. You can find toll free numbers from a variety of providers with different plan options.

Some businesses can benefit from a toll free number more than others. For example, if you are a startup, local, or a small business, a toll free number makes sense for you because it gives your business instant credibility. It is also suitable for growth because with a toll free number you can reach a national audience. E-commerce businesses and home-based businesses can also benefit from toll free numbers because if you do not have a physical address for a store, you need a reliable way for your customers to get in contact with you. Franchise businesses can also benefit from a toll free number; whether you have already franchised your business or want to head in that direction. It is a great way to keep all of your companies working under one number.

If your business falls into one of these types of companies, then you should be thinking critically about getting an 800 number. If you’re still on the fence, that may be because you are unsure of the way that it works. An 800 number is a useful number for businesses of all types because it provides a link between customer and business that does not cost the customer anything to call. Toll free numbers also are a way to connect people from across the country with your business. They are especially vital for companies that need to spend time on the phone with their customers. They are simple to set up and easy to transfer as well. If you want to personalize the toll free number to a vanity number like 1-800-DOGFOOD, most providers will offer options for such personalization which can make your business more recognizable.

Getting a Toll Free Number
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Benefits of Getting a Toll Free Number

So once you have decided your business can benefit from a toll free number, how do you go about getting one? Follow these steps to get started with your new toll free number today!

Research multiple providers

The first step to finding the right service provider for your business is by doing your research. Compare rates and plans of the top toll free number providers. Each provider will have slightly different features and prices. It is necessary that you figure out which provider has the features that you need within your budget for your toll free line. Some providers have monthly payment plans while others will charge by the minute with no minimum. You should collect data on how many calls you receive and need to make currently to find out the best plan that works for you.

Research the features

Once you have narrowed down your search by the plan, you must make sure that the providers you have narrowed down offer the right features for your business. Some providers will offer features like call recording, unlimited extensions, customized greetings, and simultaneous ringing. Remember your business’ needs and budget when deciding on features.

Contact United World Telecom or another service provider of your choosing

Many companies offer 1-800 toll-free numbers, so do your research before choosing the best provider for your business. Since you’re already here, you may have decided that United World Telecom is the best option for your business. United World Telecom offers several ways of getting in contact with them. You can get started by calling our toll free number at 1(877)898-8646, using our online chat box, or by ordering online via UnitedWorldTelecom.com.

Set up an account

Once you have chosen the right service for a business, you can start to set up your account right away. Choose the number that you want and if you decided to go with a vanity number, try to pick one that closely matches your business. After setting up an account, you should be up and ready to go the same day.

Route your phone lines

A toll free number can be routed to the phone lines that you already have. You may need to choose to have a PBX set up on the premise or to opt for a cloud-based PBX. If you select the cloud, you can be ready to go without having to install a PBX. There is also an option to route the toll-free number to a landline as well. Once you’ve signed up and set up your account, you’re done! You’re all ready to start taking calls within the hour!

Why Customer Loyalty Should be Part of Your Long-Term Strategy

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All good businesses should want to create long-term relationships with their customers. This key to success can become overlooked when your company is focused on closing sales and finding more and more customers. Truthfully, the best strategy a business can formulate is to acquire many loyal (long-term) clients instead of many new clients.

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The value of a loyal customer outweighs the value of a new customer based on multiple factors. For example, did you know that loyal customers spend significantly more money on a brand they trust than a new customer will? Loyal customers are the key to many brands’ success, and oftentimes, many brands will choose to focus all their attention on gaining customers rather than customer retention.

What is Customer Retention?

Customer retention is the best way to market your business, but what is it exactly? Customer retention isn’t just business jargon. It is a strategy that maximizes the value of your current client base.

You can still focus part of your business on finding new clients, as new clients should become loyal clients. When you make customer loyalty a substantial part of your marketing department, you will get more shoppers at your store who will shop for more extended periods of time and purchase a larger quantity of items.

Customer loyalty is not a bold, new way of thinking. Shifting your attention to your brand-loyal customers will you put you ahead of your competition because many companies are still focused on pulling in the most customers. You’ve probably seen marketing ploys that offer such enticements as “10% off for new customers, only.” But what about the hundreds or thousands of customers that already like your brand? Many strategies exist that will allow you to make your loyal customers feel appreciated. Oftentimes, they can take minimal effort while saving your company a lot of money on marketing, rather than just spending your budget trying to acquire new customers. So the question is, how do you turn a customer into a loyal client?

1. Set up an email list

First, you should acquire your customers’ email addresses, so you now have a method of communicating with them all the time. This can be done through pop-ups once they enter your website, where you can create a loyalty program with benefits that requires an email address and phone number to sign up. If your business operates in a retail location, you can have your cashiers ask for email addresses when customers are checking out. Be sure to have a reason to take their email address; a lot of customers will be afraid that you will spam them with content that they don’t want. Ensure your customers that they will only receive emails periodically and these emails will only have important information and deals inside. These emails also prompt your customers to head to your website or store whenever they receive an email.

2. Set up a toll free number

Customers become loyal when they trust a business or brand. By providing your customers with a way to get in contact with your business through the phone, your customers will be more likely to trust your company and want to make repeat purchases. They also know that if there is a problem with the product that they purchased they can call your customer care line and get problems resolved efficiently and effectively because you have earned a reputation for that.

3. Remind them to return

Since you are able to get in contact with your customers by phone and email, you can now remind them to come in. For example, if you are running a pilates studio and you haven’t seen a member in a few weeks, you can remind them that you’d love to see them or maybe let them know about any new updates to the studio. Or, if you’re running an online shop, you can send out an email to show your customers all of the new items that you have in stock since the last time they visited the site. Both of these strategies work to “push” your customer into visiting your store.

Expert Tips for Expanding into Australia with Australian Toll Free Numbers

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Australia offers great opportunities for entrepreneurs to expand their businesses. Although it’s on the other side of the world in relation to America, Australia is currently one of the most exciting locations for investors, regardless of their industry. The nation is home to around 24 million people and yet few entrepreneurs realize that it’s one of the world’s most lucrative economies. In fact, it is the 12th largest in the world. So, this gives you a great opportunity for expanding into Australia with Australian toll free numbers. Here are some expert tips on how to choose Australia for your next virtual business expansion.

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Take Advantage of Cloud Phone Numbers

A cloud phone number, such as an Australian toll free number is a virtual business number that operates through the internet. Unlike standard phone numbers, cloud phone numbers do not require any dedicated hardware or expensive software. Companies who provide virtual Australian toll free numbers route all calls made to the number to the number of your choice. It can be your landline, office phone, cell phone, or VoIP line. You will never miss a call again.

Use Australian Toll Free Numbers For Marketing

This is an easy way to test how successful your marketing campaigns are and how many leads they are pulling in. You simply use a different Australian toll free number for each of your marketing campaigns. For example, one for your website, one for your email marketing, one for your TV marketing, and another for your business cards. Now you can track your calls and see which numbers are bringing in the most new customers.

Don’t Limit Your Types of Virtual Phone Numbers

You don’t have to limit yourself to Australian toll free numbers. When you choose a provider like United World Telecom, you can also choose from Australian virtual local numbers and vanity numbers. This is a great way to boost your brand and show your customers that you have a strong presence in Australia. They won’t even know they are calling a virtual number. All numbers have a local ringback tone, so it will sound just the same as if your customers were calling a neighbor.

Your Business Will Benefit From a Range of Advanced Features

You’ll be glad that you signed up for your Australian toll free numbers with United World Telecom because you also get a suite of advanced features that you won’t find anywhere else. These include:

  • Local ringback tones
  • Rollover minutes
  • Failover forwarding
  • Simultaneous ringing
  • Black and white lists
  • Voicemail to email
  • Fax to email
  • SMS to email
  • Call recording
Stay Portable with an Australian Toll Free Number

The portability of Australian toll free numbers should not be underestimated. Let’s say you want to move your business to a different area than your current location. No problem. You can easily take your toll free numbers with you and your customers will not have to start using a different number. Whether you are moving out of state or across the world, your numbers will stay the same. This means you can maintain the same reliable relationship will all your customers without a problem.

Strengthen Customer Relations

It’s a known fact that toll free numbers can improve customer relations. Why would people want to do business with you if they are unable to get in touch with your company? Whether a customer has an issue with a product, wants to find out more about a service, or is having difficulty making an order, toll free numbers can not only make their life easier, they can also make the customer keep coming back for more. And customer loyalty is a valuable commodity.

The more comfortable your customers feel with your business, the less likely they are to turn to your competitors.

Give Your Company Credibility

Another important aspect of Australian toll free numbers is the fact that they boost your company’s credibility. This is particularly the case if you buy a vanity toll free number. A vanity number can make your company stand out from the rest because it ties in specifically to your brand. It gives your company a professional appearance that will impress customers everywhere.

You’ll Never Miss Another Call

With Australian local and toll free numbers, you can have all your calls routed to the number or numbers of your choice. You can even have calls routed to several different numbers at the same time until someone answers. These options enable you to handle calls from different time zones, so you don’t drop calls and your customers are always satisfied.

Contact United World Telecom today and find out more about how you can use Australian toll free numbers and local and toll free numbers in more than 140 countries to expand your business’s global reach.

10 Things to Know Before Creating a Virtual Presence in Australia

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Expanding your business to a new area, such as Australia, is an exciting venture but it can also be a little overwhelming. On the one hand, you can reach a greater target market, on the other you suddenly have a long list of things to do and pay for.

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If you’re truly passionate about expanding your business venture to Australia, there is a way you can do so and at the same time keep your expenses to a minimum. How? By creating a virtual presence in Australia with virtual telephone numbers. It’s an efficient and affordable way to extend your company Down Under. Here are ten things you need to know to develop a virtual presence in Australia.

  • Do your research: Every country has different laws when it comes to expanding your company, doing business, and paying taxes. Australia is no different. Just because you have a virtual presence in other countries, doesn’t mean it will work the same Down Under. That’s why it’s important to read up on the rules and regulations before you start.
  • Choose your business structure: Even though you are establishing a virtual presence, you need to structure your business very carefully. Important things to consider include how much control you are going to have over this section of your company and how much you are going to delegate to someone else, and also what level of liability you will need.
  • Decide what kind of virtual numbers you need: As well as virtual local numbers, you can also choose Australian toll free virtual numbers. These allow your customers to call you whenever they need to, completely free of charge. There are two main advantages to virtual toll free numbers. One is that they give your customers confidence in the size and reputation of your company. The other is that they garner customer appreciation.
  • Apply for an Australian Business Number (ABN): Even with a virtual presence, you can’t start doing business Down Under without an ABN. An ABN is an 11-digit number which is unique to your company and allows the Australian government to identify you as a business owner. Once you have your ABN, you can register your business name, send invoices, and deal with taxes.
  • Set up your Australian business website: Now you can really get to the meat of promoting your virtual presence in Australia. Once you have secured your business name, you can get a .com.au domain. You can use this to reach your target audience, and this is where your virtual phone numbers come into play. Post different ones on your website, social media, business cards, and email marketing campaigns. This way you can track your calls and see which marketing strategies are working the best.
  • Register for the correct taxes: Australian taxes can be complicated and you need to know which ones to register for. This will depend on the goods and services you are providing. It might be a good idea to get some legal advice from a professional so that you don’t have problems down the road.
  • Make the most of social media: You must be prepared to update your social media pages on a daily basis. This shows customers that your business is active. It also gives them other ways to communicate with you and to share information about your business with their friends.
  • Develop an understanding of your client base: Your Australian clients are not the same as your American or Mexican clients. Each target audience has different needs and desires and may also have a different buyer’s journey. It’s important that you get to know them so you can offer them what they want.
  • Start a business blog: This is a great idea, and you can even start it before you launch your business in Australia, to draw more interest and build anticipation. A blog or vlog is a great way to build transparency and increase your social media presence. It also provides a neat space for you to promote your products and services in a subtler way than pure marketing. A blog or vlog can be a great way to swing a doubtful customer into your favor.
  • Be available 24/7: This is why you need virtual Australian phone numbers; so you will never miss a call. Calls can be routed to whichever number or numbers you choose. You can even set rules for certain times of day, so you will be able to deal with different time zones.

Contact United World Telecom today and find out more about creating a virtual presence in Australia with virtual local and toll free numbers. When you call, don’t forget to ask for a free trial. There’s no commitment.

Achieving First Contact Resolution

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Quality customer service is a necessity to run a profitable business that continuously attracts new customers and retains the loyalty of past buyers. Every entrepreneur values customer service, no matter the size of their business. Yet, new business owners and established professionals often hear the same advice about customer service management.

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Call center employees must be well-trained. Agents should also be friendly and patient to show customer appreciation while also making callers feel more comfortable when speaking with team members.

What is First Contact Resolution?

What about repeat calls from customers? Finding a solution for customers during the first conversation is ideal. When a customer calls back to discuss the same problem, this is often negative and not the desired result after the first call. When you can fully satisfy the customer during the first call, this is known as achieving first contact resolution (FCR).

A Solutions-First Approach

FCR greatly elevates the customer service experience and prevents upsetting delays. Furthermore, it shows how knowledgeable your team is in your industry. Negative callback experiences lower staff morale and can frustrate callers. Resolve customer issues and they don’t have to call back to ask similar questions or inform you that your help was ineffective.

Achieving the first-contact resolution at your call center is a unique process for every business. Use these four tips to help increase it.

Track FCR In Your Company

The first step to achieving first contact resolution is knowing your company performance by tracking metrics. Gather data to find areas where first-contact resolution is easily achieved and where more work needed. Tracking performance allows managers to see where employees need additional training and support, increasing the likelihood of solving customer problems on the first attempt.

Areas of poor performance require special attention in the process of achieving first contact resolution. Understanding why FCR was not achieved by knowing why customers needed to call back is key for management to modify their training approaches and strengthen all aspects of the customer service approach.

Know Thy Customer

Knowing the customer is essential for achieving first contact resolution, and the best customer service agents understand customer behaviors on a deeper level. Understanding spoken and unspoken behaviors allows reps to better analyze individual needs and the most effective strategies during the call. Effective customer service agents often go off-script because they can notice the caller’s tone of voice and word choices. These observations help customer service agents address hesitation and confusion by providing more assistance during the first call.

Understanding customer behavior while achieving first contact resolution does more than impress the caller. Customers will feel genuinely understood, and this strengthens their personal connection with your brand. A true sense of connection will naturally inspire buyers to continue investing in your business and recommending your services to others.

Set Specific Goals For Team Members

Setting FCR as a priority means setting clearly defined goals. As these goals are being set, supervisors must explain why these guidelines are in place and the positive impact achieving first contact resolution would have on the company.

If call center agents are only achieving first contact resolution, they might think this is a good sign without realizing FCR should be a frequent occurrence. FCR adds more value to the company, resulting in more calls and sales.

Let employees know the importance of achieving first contact resolution at team meetings (or individually). Agents are communicating with customers every day, which provides an understanding of customers in a more personal way.

Let your customer service agents tell you about their experiences with callers for a deeper level of insight. Then, show your team that you value their knowledge by incorporating their suggestions as you continue setting guidelines for achieving first contact resolution.

Ask The Customer

After achieving first contact resolution is set as the priority that everyone in your business understands, data should also be gathered from the customer directly. Provide the option for customer surveys to allow customers to openly voice their opinion on your service. Management and agents can use customer input as a resource to determine the best course of action moving forward.

Achieving First Contact Resolution Is Profitable

Today running a successful business means finding a way to stand apart from competitors. Operating a business that customers enjoy connecting with leads to more purchases as callers speak directly with team members for assistance.

Strengthening your first contact resolution is an important part of setting your brand apart as an expert in your market as well as a leader in customer service. Leaders in the customer service field are among the best assets for a business looking to grow. Your customer service agents are imperative to the efforts of becoming a more reputable business. Empowering your customer service teams will help them to be confident and impactful when speaking during phone calls. Keep in mind, you also have the option of using software and additional resources to help your customer representatives achieve first contact resolution goals.

Marketing Campaigns To Boost Customer Service

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Startup funding matters, but it isn’t the deciding factor of your success in the market. Originality is key for today’s marketing campaigns, and the way you advertise your products is the best way to boost your public appeal.

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Your company is defined by more than your mission statement and messaging style. The perspective of your customers also determines how your business is perceived by consumers.
When you work to improve your marketing campaigns, customers will work for you by sharing your advertisements and mentioning their positive experiences when doing business with your company.

Read on for tips using your marketing campaigns to boost customer service.

Have Personality

Customers aren’t expecting brands to follow traditional guidelines when conveying their message. Instead of focusing on the facts and lacking personality, customers want to get a feel for who you are and what your business truly stands for before purchasing your products.

This desire for genuine content is why vlogs have skyrocketed in popularity on YouTube and on social media platforms. Likewise, behind the scenes footage is intriguing and unscripted. This is the content viewers enjoy sharing, and it can immediately change their perspective.

Honesty connects audiences to a brand before they reach out to your team. Marketing campaigns naturally boost customer service when people feel that they have something in common with your vision or your team members. Once common ground is established, potential customers will be more supportive and willing to invest in your company.

Use Social Media To Your Advantage

People began to rely on social media to stay in touch with friends and family when the concept was introduced. As more businesses began to market through social media, customers followed suit, building stronger relationships with brands they trust. Likewise, social media became a tool for researching businesses, purchasing products, and reading customer reviews.

Today, social media is the most popular outlet for brands and consumers to share their thoughts and important updates. Properly utilizing social media allows businesses to attract new customers and build a favorable reputation in your industry.

Social media is a tool for marketing campaigns to boost customer service as it solidifies your presence as a modern brand. Furthermore, social media adds a level of transparency customers appreciate. They can read the comments to see how you conduct your business and how past customers felt about their experiences.

When you decide to invest the time into social media marketing campaigns to boost customer service, take things a step further by interacting with customers. Thank users who mention your products, offer deals and promotions via messaging, and join conversations about topics related to your industry.

Request Customer Feedback

What better way to understand your customers than asking for their feedback directly? Marketing campaigns to boost customer service are effective when encouraging customer feedback because customers want to share their opinion – especially if they enjoy doing business with your company.

Business owners enhance the customer service experience because when you market your business by asking for feedback, it shows you value the input of people who purchase your services. Furthermore, you can implement the ideas customers give you to prove that your company puts the customer first. This has the ability to strengthen relationships with consumers and other industry professionals.

Distribute Email Newsletters

Email marketing is an outlet for sharing your professionalism, latest deals, and unique voice. Use email newsletters to keep customers informed and engaged.

Businesses don’t have to send out letters by mail when using marketing campaigns to boost customer service. Email marketing usually has a high return on investment because almost everyone, even in diverse age ranges, checks their email daily. Personalize emails by linking them back to your products and sharing insider tips and updates.

Offer Free Trials

Everyone loves freebies and giveaways. Free trials can be used as a strategy to introduce new products to the market and analyze customer preferences. What logos and branding styles appeal to target customers? How are customers responding to your product? Are the instructions and advantages easy to comprehend?

Answering these questions will help you set prices and customize marketing campaigns to boost customer service.

It’s important to show that your company is relevant and customer-oriented. Public reaction to a new product or service provides the insight you need to create future marketing strategies and determine the best approach to customer service. You have to know that there is a diverse range of customers out there that you can reach. While we were once limited to television and print publications, we now have the internet to help our brand be successful from any location in the world.

Customers are constantly being advertised to so they want something that is original and that fits their lifestyle and vision. It’s not uncommon for new businesses to fail because they didn’t have an impactful and innovative marketing strategy that puts the customer first. Don’t make assumptions. Take the appropriate actions to find out customer needs and react accordingly.

Empowering Your Customer Service Team

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Customer service teams are often at the center of globally recognized companies and small businesses. Regardless of the industry, these teams have one thing in common: they connect with customers on a professional and emotional level. Working as a customer service professional is a responsibility fueled by learning and innovative thinking.

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Managers can provide support as agents work and find their unique voice, but there’s no need to look over their shoulders to help. The best companies don’t thrive on micromanagement. Instead, they create effective customer service teams by providing access to the tools employees need to succeed.

Empowering your customer service team through knowledge and freedom will increase their confidence and helps them to make customers happy. The relationships your customer service agents build with callers is critical to the success of your business because an exceptional customer service experience will keep your customers confident in their decisions and loyal to your brand.

Word of mouth advertising is no longer done face to face. Sharing both pleasant and negative experiences online is now the norm. Keeping this in mind, it’s imperative to help agents deliver a memorable experience. Through the internet, customers will see your reviews and use this information to determine if doing business with you is the right choice.

Keeping your customer service team motivated should always be a focus of training throughout the duration of their employment. Use these tips to empower your customer service team while creating more productive and motivated work spaces.

Ask Customer Service Agents For Advice

Showing employees their input holds weight when making company decisions is a key method for empowering customer service agents.

Callers are frequently expressing their thoughts for improvements to agents. Your call center representatives know customer preferences better than anyone because they speak with customers daily and receive feedback.

Therefore, when service agents share their ideas, it’s important to listen. Their input is coming from the diverse perspectives of your clientele while understanding the internal operations of the company.

Guessing the needs of customers is often ineffective, and communication gaps have multiple negative effects. Failure to communicate properly can alienate team members, resulting in a higher turnover rate. Sales can also suffer because customers may have trouble connecting with a brand that demonstrates poor messaging.

Request the input of agents and you’ll be empowering customer service teams by showing appreciation for their knowledge. Your marketing strategies will also be more impactful when using the knowledge of your team to customize your advertisements and brand message.

Provide Access To Mentors

Assessing skills and investing company time and resources into training is expected for new team members. But training shouldn’t stop after the hiring process.

Your team must stay competitive to be a leader in your industry as markets and technologies continue to evolve. Consider mentorship programs as a resource, and make the programs easily accessible.

Coordinate a team of mentors with experience and a proven track record for implementing strategies that work. These experts are empowering for your customer service teams because their personal stories of trial and error can resonate with employees and boost confidence. Your team members must accept their role as a constant learning experience. They don’t have to feel the pressure of knowing (or not knowing) everything or be afraid of making mistakes.

There are always goals to meet, but that doesn’t mean everyone knows the strategies of how to meet company objectives and hit deadlines. The right mentors will help customer service agents understand various ways to meet goals and discuss approaches that enhance the customer experience.

Management roles require an extensive amount of time and energy. When supervisors have to oversee company operations and assist customer service agents, it doubles their workload and creates a tense environment. Managers can feel more comfortable to let team members work freely as they become more knowledgeable.

In Conclusion

Empowering customer service teams helps team members to be more comfortable in their role as they create profitable relationships with callers. Furthermore, it creates a deeper level of commitment to the company because employees are at ease when working knowing their work is valued and know company leaders have their best interests at heart.

While empowering customer service teams is the focus, workplace empowerment will benefit the entire company. An empowered customer service team is more likely to close sales, which positively impacts the brand’s value and bottom line. As other businesses notice the success of your team, it opens the door to more sponsorships and partnering opportunities.

Positioning your business as a trusted authority in your industry takes work, and a strong team dedicated to customer service will always be beneficial. When your business is providing high-quality goods and services while meeting the needs of customers, you’ll build a commendable reputation and inspire customer loyalty.

Choosing a Voice for your IVR & Voice Prompts

Source: Stockphoto.com O#23559 – ID#100132148974

The first voice that your customers encounter of your brand through your IVR & Voice Prompts can make or break your image. We all have heard the old adages about how the first impression is the most important, so wouldn’t you want the first voice your clients hear to be the right one for your company?

ivr server
Source: Stockphoto.com O#23559 – ID#100203026446

Every time your customer calls your company, they are greeted by a familiar voice and in order to create a great experience for your customer, two major factors are at hand:

  1. The technology must be up to standard
  2. The voice must be humanizing

Having the highest standard in technology means that your customers will be greeted by a clear voice, that is able to guide them efficiently and correctly. When the voice is humanizing, the sound offers a friendly vibe that encourages friendliness to be mimicked on the other end.
The easiest way to accomplish this clear and friendly sound for your customers is to hire a professional voice actor to record on your IVR system. Voice actors for IVR are actually easily found because they are managed by telephony applications.

Choosing the Right Voice

Finding the right voice for your IVR is not as easy as picking a random name from a hat. You have to think about what voice stays consistent with your brand. To find the right person for your IVR, consider these options before making your choice.

Tradition

In the past, all businesses used female voices for their voice prompts. You can find evidence of this as far back as World War II. The trend of using automated female voices began in the cockpits of fighter airplanes so that the male pilots could distinguish who was talking. To this day, the majority of businesses use a female automated voice, but that doesn’t necessarily mean you can narrow down your search just yet.

Male Voices Vs Female Voices

Pros for the male voice include that most people believe that a man is forceful and dominant. However, female voices are said to sound more soothing. Knowing these details, it can be assumed that a customer would feel calmer on the phone when hearing a female voice. However, depending on what you are selling or what image you are trying to portray, a male voice might be more persuasive than a female voice.

Know Your Audience

Between male and female voices, one thing is sure, males prefer to hear other males and females prefer to hear other females. Therefore, if your customer base is dominated by one gender over another your choice is much more simple. If there is no clear gender division of the audience, there are still more things to consider. For example, if you cater to an older community, it might be best to choose a male voice as older individuals might find it more difficult to hear and understand a higher-pitched female voice.

Industry

If your industry is not trying to sell a product or service, and instead uses IVR to communicate with their customers regarding account information and payment information, this company needs to find a voice actor that will be perceived as capable. In this situation, where your clients are trying to accomplish a task instead of purchase an item or dispute a situation, a more forceful voice may come in handy. However, no two task-oriented industries are the same. Health insurance companies prefer to use soothing female voices. These voices are preferred for more sensitive subjects as humans are inclined to trust females.

What Are the Options?

There are many options to choose from for voice automation including multiple companies to work with and multiple voice options. The three most popular voice options are robotic text-to-speak voices, hiring a voice actor, or combining the two.

Only you know what will be best for your company, and you might be finding yourself justifying each option for an IVR voice. Some companies know immediately which voice would fit with their brand immediately, others can have a harder time because they reach a broader audience. Consider the options and situations above before making your decision. Luckily, if your customers don’t like the voice you pick for your voice prompts, they probably won’t be super bothered by it. If you are worried that you haven’t made the right decision, consider putting together a focus group to test out your favorites.