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Sprint wants to meet its customers where they are, and, many of them want to engage with the company via social media.
As a result, Sprint has implemented a new approach to its customer experience/customer service across social media, selecting Conversocial to empower agents to move incoming concerns to resolution across Facebook, Twitter, and other social sites.
Loyalty360 caught up with John R. Glenn, Vice President, Care Strategy, Operations and Transformation, Sprint, and he discussed the new customer service/experience approach via social media.
What factors prompted Sprint to implement this new approach to customer service using social media and what are your goals for it related to customer engagement and customer experience?
We identified a large segment of our customer base that preferred to engage us via social, with specific account and/or service- related needs. It became increasingly clear to us that we had a great opportunity to extend our service delivery capabilities to include social media. At Sprint, we’re always looking for ways to make it easy for our customers to do business with us and by actively engaging our customers through social channels, we’re able to create a low-effort experience.
Simply put, our mission is to meet our customers where they are, to listen for emerging trends, and to resolve their service needs without requiring they interrupt their day with needing to call customer service. At the end of the day, we believe this low-effort experience will foster brand advocates.
Was customer feedback a factor in this and, if so, in what way?
As we have evolved this channel, we’ve seen the marketplace evolve in terms of the solutions offered for Social Customer service. At first, it was important to deliver everything into a single stream for monitoring. This was more of a listening tool approach, and worked until our growth made it difficult for agents to find relevant conversations and not duplicate work. Next, we deployed a tool that delivered posts to our agents so they didn’t have to search for content, but the context of the conversation was lost.
As you can imagine, with our large-scale social customer service team of hundreds of agents across multiple call center sites operating 24x7, customers were dissatisfied that their posts would be replied to by multiple agents and context was lost by treating each message as a separate interaction. Imagine getting one text or one line of an email from someone and having to search for the rest of the conversation. We recognized this wasn’t an effective way for our team to operate.
How important is it to Sprint to listen to your customers?
Perception is reality, and with Social Media, word travels fast. Listening and responding to customers in a timely manner allows current (and future) customers to see first-hand the commitment Sprint has to creating loyal customers to strengthen our brand, which builds trust and long-lasting relationships. Our customers come first and listening to their concerns, issues, or interests is key for Sprint.
How do you define customer loyalty and has that definition changed or evolved in recent years as the customer has become so empowered?
Sprint is creating customer loyalty by delivering a simplified experience across all customer touch points and working to become the easiest carrier to do business with.
Loyal customers not only choose to stay with Sprint, they also refer their friends and family to Sprint. This “promoter” system is evolving and being expanded upon within Sprint to ensure we capture customer feedback and loop that back into the enterprise to ensure we have improvement across customer impacting processes and touch points.
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