Customer-facing employees aren’t only responsible in getting your business to make a sale. As the first point of contact, they leave customers with a first impression of your brand. And as wisdom has it, first impressions last, that’s why your frontliners play an important role in how your brand is perceived. If they make a bad impression, you not only lose a sale, you also make an enemy of your customers.
It’s critical that your frontliners are prepared to manage a PR crisis. After all, they are your brand ambassadors and emergency first responders in times of crisis. Here are some ways you can turn them into the best representatives of your brand:
Simplify Your Message
Frontliners have to juggle tons of information, from the products and sales processes, to the organization and its corporate messaging. Personnel who have a hard time answering inquiries may look incompetent in the eyes of a customer—an opinion that could reflect on your brand. To protect your staff and your brand, your messages should be simple enough to be understood and discussed. Be sure that your frontliners clearly understand what your products can and cannot do, as well as the extent of after-sales service and who they should approach when customers encounter a problem with their purchase.
Empower Your Employees
In a viral story, a baby needing surgery in Manila could not board a plane with his parents and doctor due to problems with his oxygen tank. The parents asked the staff for help, but were refused assistance due to certain reasons. After 10 hours of frustration, the parents decided that they would rather have the baby risk flying without an oxygen tank than delay surgery.
If only the employees were empowered to help, the story could have been a PR win instead of a loss. Employees must always strive to give the best service they can. If circumstances render them unable to help, they should have a list of people or services they can tap to accommodate the situation.
Get Frontline Feedback
Frontliners are the first to catch new trends through your customers. If you want to know what’s happening in the market, always request for their feedback. This will help your brand adapt to the times whenever customer demographics and needs change. Accordingly, provide your staff with new guidelines so they know how to deal with new customers.
Develop Capability and Knowledge Base
A month after training, your employees will most probably have forgotten 80 percent of the material they learned. Continuous training is necessary to ensure that your frontline staff can properly represent your brand, especially as their responsibilities increase. Find different ways to reinforce the concepts and techniques you want them to remember so that no matter the situation, they can handle it.
Know how else you can empower your sales team? Share it with us in the comments below.