Melissa Moffett is the VP, Customer Service, at Machias Savings Bank. At The Future Contact Center Summit, January 26-30 in Orlando, Melissa will lead a session on “How a Small Contact Center Embraced Social Customer Care.” In advance of the Summit, she was kind enough to share her insights on some of her customer service success stories.
What are the core tenets of customer service at Machias Savings Bank?
We will personalize each customer’s experience by focusing on their individual preferences and needs in order to build strong relationships. We will be reachable, flexible, and passionate. For our call center, I also strive to create a positive and fun environment. One of the keys to providing exceptional service comes from happy employees. We work as a team and look out for each other. The team participates in Fun Fridays, has dress up themed days, and of course lots of food! Training is supported by success stories and how a mistake that is made can be turned into a loyal customer. Another key concept is all of our calls are live answered from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. Our sales staff use this to leverage proposals for business. How many organizations can say this today?
Can you share a specific customer service success story in the last year or so that led to bottom-line profits/savings for the organization?
An agent was on the phone with a customer when her cat started having a seizure. The customer became very distraught and the agent asked if he could contact the local animal hospital to help. The agent was able to reach the hospital and connect them with our customer. The next day the agent called the customer to see how the cat was doing and found out the cat had passed away. The agent then sent a sympathy card with a personal note. The customer was so touched, she drove to the main office to meet with the agent and thank him for caring. Each month we vote top success stories bank wide, and this story was the winner. We also found out from another manager who works in the back office that the customer’s husband was bragging about the bank at the local church and how he would never bank anywhere but MSB. It is hard to quantify ROI on this story except that we now had a long-term loyal customer. That is our culture – we want to build loyal relationships.
What are the fundamental keys for successfully delivering service on social media?
We have learned by the response rates of our posts what the customer’s wants are with social media. We have found increased responses come from posts promoting local events and individuals we sponsoring. We also offer avenues for customers to submit local photos of our communities thru the seasonal photo contests. The contests allow the public to vote on the winners and they are entered into a chance to be on our yearly calendar. The community also enjoy pictures of our internal events showing our employees having fun. This area of our social media is handled by the marketing department.
As far as service responses, those are handled within the call center. We use a community management software that allows Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn postings to be monitored on one site streamlining this for us. We act with a sense of urgency and depending on the post we will either post publicly or private message a response to help.
How do new channels such as email, chat, and social media affect the type of customer service employees that are the most successful?
As with everything we do at Machias Savings Bank, we want to provide all channels available for the convenience of the customer and fulfill their needs. We are constantly looking thru the lens of customer to improve our communication tools. I expect the department agents to use each channel periodically to remember the customer impact of their responses. It is easy to become complacent, and forget how their response to the given channel can give the perception of not caring. We want our customers to know we are here for them.
What does the future of customer service look like to you?
I foresee the future of customer service to become more virtual. The branch traffic is significantly decreasing and those customers still have banking needs. Those needs are being redirected via technology to the call center. We currently are open 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. weekdays and 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturdays. In the next 3 to 5 years, I anticipate we will be open 24/7. We will need to be ready to meet with a customer via video conferencing as well as by phone, chat, email, and social media.
Melissa Moffett is the VP of Customer Service at Machias Savings Bank. She will be speaking at The Future Contact Center Summit, January 26-30 in Orlando, Florida.