Blogs

Derek Bishop

Director

Spam or customer service

Date added: 24th Feb 2017
Category: Customer Experience

To look for pure sales at the expense of everything else is quite frankly little more than pushing spam

Hair loss, boiler replacement, smelly feet; it seems as though the spammers are branching out in their quest to persuade people to part with their banking details or to download a virus on to computer systems. So blatant are some of these spam contacts nowadays that one of our colleagues commented recently it was almost refreshing to receive a message from an ‘old friend’, asking for help in moving missing inheritance money from overseas!

Mind you that was the same colleague who commented the other day that if they reported every spam text or phone call which they received to the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) then they would have little time left for work. They’re doing their bit though and although they can’t claim to be solely responsible for the 10,993 automated spam call reports received by the ICO in January, they aren’t surprised that this represents a 62% increase over the previous month.

In a way, the spammers are getting too greedy. Receive one nuisance call in a day and you’re likely to ignore it and get on with whatever you are doing. Receive seven calls and the interruption is so severe that you are far more likely to set out on a reporting crusade.

Before we condemn the spammers completely it might be worth taking a little time to consider our own customer contact methods.  Let’s get one thing clear at the outset; having a dialogue with customers is a fantastic way of strengthening business relationships as well as collaborating in order to deliver products and services which our customers really want.

But are our messages really designed for open dialogue or simply as a way to drive sales? How many of the ‘special offers chosen for you’ are genuinely targeted towards meeting the needs of an individual customer rather than a blanket means of disposing of excess stock? And truthfully how concerned are we with pushing the message out rather than opening our ears and listening?

Far too often the end products of marketing campaigns go straight into the bin or junk mailbox simply because we haven’t actually stopped to understand what it is that our customer really needs or looked to interact with them in a positive way. If we are serious about building innovative organisations that deliver differentiated experiences and genuine solutions then any marketing we do has to be based on genuine customer insights and a real desire for collaboration. To do otherwise, to look for pure sales at the expense of everything else is quite frankly little more than pushing spam.

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