The way to talk to customers

Categories Banter

I had a very interesting conversation the other day at work. My colleagues and I were trying to figure out what we do in the role of servicing the customer. We came up with the explanation that the role of my service team is that we humanise technology.

I work for an entertainment company, but more importantly I work for the division that is responsible for putting all the great TV shows that people love onto mobile devices. Sounds pretty cool, doesn’t it? The thing that we tend to forget is that technology breaks. Even the best piece of software or app will always have problems on faulty devices, not to say that all devices are faulty.

The problem comes in when we need to explain these errors to an irate person on the other end of the conversation. We need to take tech talk, often handed down to us, to a pretty average Joe in the techie world. We become translators.

The best way to articulate the way we talk to our customers is the way we talk to our grandparents. I always use this analogy, because it tends to bring out an emotion in us. We never talk down to our grandparents and we are always are patient. Grandparents don’t get technology, so complex problems always need to be simplified to their core. If we are writing, we always need to choose the shortest word or statement.

I think the days of talking to customers using long, confusing terms are gone. Customers know when we are bullshitting them and have no issue asking us to rephrase it. Prosumers rule the world and they demand to be spoken to the way they want to, we must never forgot that.

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