While live help software provides many benefits, the unique opportunities to make a psychological connection with the customer can dramatically affect your site’s ability to convert.
As we recently reported, bad customer service costs businesses $108 billion each year.
Yet most customers were very satisfied with their live help experiences. This is because live chat psychology allows your business to make deep, meaningful connections during your customer service interaction – whether your customers realize it or not.
Live help software is more than simply a way to decrease load on your customer support staff – it’s a way to make a real, meaningful connection with your customers and establish strong psychological bonds between you and them.
Live Help Psychology: Why Customers Love Chatting
According to social media masters at Buffer, there are three psychological needs customers have during customer service interactions:
- A personal touch
- Reciprocity and fairness
- Being treated like a VIP
Live chat software can fulfill each of these needs, leaving your customers feeling satisfied and positive about your business.
So what does live chat psychology look like in action? Here’s a breakdown.
Delivering a Personal Connection Through Live Chat
It’s probably obvious how live chat helps your business appear more personal to your customers. Because of the messaging tools your customers use on a daily basis, live chat experiences feel as familiar as chatting with a friend.
Here are some tips to making sure you leverage the full potential of live chat to deliver a personal touch:
- Take on a deliberately professional or casual online customer service tone. (You can read more about choosing an appropriate tone here.)
- Exchange names and use them during the conversation. Using your customers’ names in your communications makes them feel like they are being spoken to personally, creating a psychological connection between you and them.
- Avoid miscommunication by taking time to think about responses and being clear. Remember, chat isn’t a phone call, so you have a few extra seconds to make everything just right.
- Say thank you.
Check out our blog archives for more information on communicating personality in your live chats.
Using Chat to Demonstrate Reciprocity and Fairness
In simple terms, reciprocity means that when you show love and loyalty for your customers, they’ll show it back.
As Buffer describes, “Reciprocity has fascinating effects in the context of customer service. By going out of your way to love a customer, it creates a subconscious desire for them to return the favor. Reciprocity is something we all feel, and it’s the reason loyalty is so very valuable to a business.”
Here are some simple things you can do to show loyalty for your customers through your live help software:
- Demonstrate interest in your customer’s interests. (In most cases, their interest is getting their problem resolved, but don’t be afraid to go above and beyond.) This can be as simple as writing, “That must be really frustrating – let me see how I can help get that fixed for you.”
- Surprise them with unexpected upgrades or bonuses. Since the number of customers who use live chat is likely only a fraction of your total customers base, it may even be affordable to give priority upgrades to everyone who contacts your organization.
- Always keep your promises. Train customer service representatives well so they don’t accidentally promise something your business can’t deliver – this leads to immediate resentment.
In this age of social media and viral videos, it’s very important to be loyal to your customers. Think about the recent backlash against large telecommunications companies and their customer service representatives. Certain customers are made promises that aren’t honored. Avoid this by acting genuine and loyal in your live chat communication.
How Live Help Software Allows You to Treat Customers Like a VIP
Finally, your customer should be treated like a VIP. Even though they may have been the 100th person your business has helped today, he or she needs to feel special.
The good news is applying a little live chat psychology in this way is easy. You can easily create dialog that makes customers feel like their specific request is receiving preferential treatment. As Beyond Philosophy writes,
Your customer experience should be deliberate. You effectively must deliberate over it and have a considered the conscious, subconscious and emotional impact of the experience you provide. The subconscious brain is a fertile garden to sow positive seeds. The mind is highly selective, processing millions of pieces of information each second, yet we remain largely unaware of this filtering mechanism.
By concentrating on delivering the right subconscious signals, you’re ensuring that your customers are emotionally engaged in a way that promotes customer loyalty and customer retention by way of an excellent customer experience.
Meet with your customer service representatives and ask them: what do customers like? What makes them feel like VIPs? What are ways we can make every customer feel special when they come chat with us?
Once you have these answers, craft your customer service experience scripts and experience around dialog that makes customers feel like they really are important to your business.
Implement These Suggestions Now
With an understanding of the psychology of live help, you can immediately begin improving your live chat experience. Make a plan today to deliver a personal touch, reciprocity, and the VIP experience, then watch your customer loyalty (and profits) soar.