When a consumer depends on something important - test results, medication, medical advice - they often feel vulnerable or anxious about the next step in the process. Suddenly, a routine customer service interaction, such as a question about shipments, becomes another potential point of anxiety. It's important that companies in the bio and pharma industries have the right individuals at that juncture, ready and willing to guide the apprehensive consumer to the solutions he or she needs to feel comfortable and respected.
Just the Facts
Just as two individuals with the same illness might approach healing in completely different ways, no two customer contacts will be exactly alike. The tone and content of your customer service responses are as important to the healing process as any pill would be, and safeguarding your brand means seeking out CS agents well-versed in empathy. If a customer calls in or writes an email using a matter-of-fact tone, it's reasonable to assume that they want to stick to the facts and data - it likely gives them a feeling of control over their medical needs. Provide these customers with solid information, such as how often to take their medication or the next person they'll need to contact after they receive their test results.
A Kind Ear
Alternately, if customers get in touch with your contact centers and sound overwhelmed or concerned, instruct your agents to offer empathy and reassurances to the extent of legal ability. A individual imagining the worst case scenario after getting test results might need some support and guidance for their next steps, which an agent's caring tone can offer. These individuals are likely feeling vulnerable about their medical future, unsure what it will look like. This contact point will define their relationship with your company or services from that point on, so make sure it's a positive one.
Worth the Wait
While customers might be reluctant or distracted when it comes to answering questions or completing steps, the voice of the customer will tell you a great deal about their state of mind. Much like body language, even word choice can reveal the way they're feeling in the moment, enabling observant customer service agents to take cues.
When in doubt, it's always in contact centers' best interests to let the customer do the talking. More often than not, they'll talk themselves into a state that's more open to listening and discussing, they simply have to burn off some nervous energy through talking. Agents should be patient and offer prompts when necessary - sometimes, answers can be found as part of a narrative - "And then on Monday, right after I took my pill..." - rather than a direct answer to a question, such as "When was the last time you took that medication?"
If you'd like to improve the way your contact center connects and interacts with customers on these levels, the 17th Annual Bio/Pharma Contact Centers Conference is the perfect opportunity to do so. The program focuses on the globalization of contact centers, as well as increasing efficiency and engagement alongside new technologies and tools. Held February 27-28, 2018 in Philadelphia, PA, it's a rare opportunity to discover the voice of your consumers through the advice of industry professionals.