Invest in your support team and teach them like HubSpot

“We see support as central to our customer experience. And, it’s been a big point of investment, not just financially but also in terms of resources, innovation and making sure that we’re growing the team in terms of the skills that they’re developing”

― David Hunt, VP of Customer Support at HubSpot

It’s easy to overlook customer support when deciding where to invest in your company. But support is important; it’s the bridge between the company and the customer, and your team needs to be equipped with everything it requires to properly assist customers and solve their problems.

“Support interactions impact retention; customers may buy Hubspot for a number of reasons, but the reason they stay with Hubspot is because of the support.” ― David Hunt, VP of Customer Support at HubSpot

Making a commitment to provide customers with more than just the answer to their question can be crucial in their decision to stick with your company. Customer interactions should be viewed as a learning experience for support. Through them, support teams can discover what needs improvement and learn how to better assist customers in the future.

“What are we learning from these insights, and these friction points and the experience and what are we doing to eliminate them upstream? That’s a lot of where we spend our time operationally: trying to refine the things that will help all customers and drive more value.”

― David Hunt, VP of Customer Support at HubSpot

Secret #9: Focus on adding value to the customerexperience rather than simply closing tickets

Customers usually come to support when they’re in need of help or need to resolve an issue. Although it is expected that support will solve customer problems, going above and beyond to add value to this process is the difference between meeting expectations and exceeding them.

Recognizing tickets as opportunities to provide value rather than as tasks to be completed is what makes the support team at HubSpot stand out.

“Drive more impact. Ask: ‘How can we provide incremental value?’, not ‘How do we stop the tickets?’” ― David Hunt, VP of Customer Support at HubSpot

One way to add value to the customer experience is the devotion to customer success. It’s about doing more than the just bare minimum to close the ticket; it’s giving customers the tools they need to be successful in the future. Be it by helping the customer reimagine your product or simply shedding light on useful features, support should be “providing value so that somebody is walking away with more than they initially came into that interaction expecting”.

Secret #10: Have Empathy for Your Customers

“Part of it is that human connection. Recognizing that you’re helping somebody and that you’re able to actually hopefully contribute something to their day, to their livelihood, and that’s what so important” ― David Hunt, VP of Customer Support at HubSpot

As a customer-facing department, support frequently interacts with people, be it through a live chat tool, over the phone, or in an email. But with the lack of face-to-face interaction, it can be hard to remember the human part of customer support. That’s why it’s so important to exercise empathy and seek connection with customers. Taking the time to put yourself in a customer’s shoes may help you to better serve them. Ask yourself how you would want to be treated in that situation, or what would be helpful to you at that time. This is especially crucial when dealing with an upset customer. If you dig deeper into why they’re so riled up, you’ll probably discover you might feel the same way in that situation, and can assess what the next best step would be.

During training, highlight the value of empathy during customer support interactions. Demonstrate to your support team how your company culture promotes empathy, or how it can affect NPS.  

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