“The more open and honest we’ve beenwith customers, the richer the relationship has been.”
—Carloyn Kopprasch, chief customer officer at Buffer 3
Transparency is a strategic move in today’s customer centric world. Nearly all consumers (94%) are more brand loyal when organizations offer transparency. ⁴ And total transparency is a key value of Buffer’s business.
From pricing to product roadmaps, transparency is the default setting for the social media management app. That goes for customer care, too.
Secret #3 Commit to transparency when a high-volume support event hits.
Staying open with customers when it counts
Take a support professional’s worst nightmare: a hack. Nine minutes after the team confirmed a security breach in 2013, a brand tweet was published and a customer-facing email was sent. The company posted and continued to update a live blog as email and Twitter support contact tripled. ⁵
While hacks can seriously hurt business, Buffer found that extreme transparency (combined with speed) didn’t impact their pipeline. The days following the hack showed nearly record sign-ups. In spite of a massive security incident, rapid, straightforward communications helped maintain customer’s trust and bring new ones on board.
Secret #4 Set up a sync with product representatives and share meeting notes across the entire support organization.\
What internal transparency looks like
Support offers the entire business a direct line to the customer; collaboration with internal teams like
product, sales and marketing is critical to closing the feedback loop.
Buffer committed to bridging the gap between support through a consistent communication system. Members from both teams meet weekly, and the meeting notes are shared with everyone. ⁶
At first, these meeting reports were brief status updates, but they’ve since grown to provide resources like screenshots, FAQs and links to documentation. This channel allows for a transparent view of the product roadmap and involves support during early stages of product development. When one communication channel turns into a two-way street for feedback between teams, customers benefit.