In this article, we’ll share all the benefits of proactive communication and how it can alleviate negative reactions.
What is Proactive Communication?
Proactive communication is a PR strategy in which a business answers questions and addresses concerns before they arise. They also anticipate likely problems and complaints before they are made.
In this digital era, information – accurate or not – spreads like wildfire. It’s inevitable that someone will have criticism or pushback about your business, organization, or candidate, so it’s best to anticipate that criticism. Imagine that a marketer accidentally sells a faulty gadget to a client. On realization that the gadget is faulty, the client contacts customer care hoping that his problem will be solved immediately. What if his call is not answered on the first attempt? The customer will begin to get agitated. They may start sharing negative feedback about the company.
As a proactive communicator, you’ll foresee such a problem before it happens. You’ll then set measures to prevent it. Perhaps in this specific case scenario, you can set up procedures to test every gadget before it is sold or dispatched and set up customer service FAQs.
Another great example of proactive communication is when a company communicates to investors about all the fluctuations and losses (if any) that are likely to occur. In those cases, companies can proactively advise investors on how to avoid losses. Proactive communication makes clients and investors feel important and cared for, and helps you rest easy that you’ve won the trust and loyalty of most of your clients.
Benefits Of Proactive Communication
Most businesses rely on reactive communication for their day-to-day operations. They wait to solve a problem until it arises.
The truth is that reactive communication works, but only for a short period of time. When problems are solved as they arise, customers will always be afraid of the same problem recurring.
That’s why proactive workplace communication is extremely important for the success of any organization. Next, we’ll discuss in detail the benefits of proactive communication in any business.
Proactive communication indicates to clients that you care about them
Proactive communicators anticipate problematic situations and come up with strategies to solve them. In the same way, a proactive customer service team will have a personalized management system for their clients.
They’ll store all the necessary information they need to know about the client in an easily accessible location. Thus, in case they need to contact any of their clients, all contact info will be readily available.
Also, proactive communication will not spam their client’s emails with unnecessary promotional images. They’ll inquire about the needs of each of their customers and only send promotional emails or messages that are in line with their interests.
Proactive communicators also respond to messages quickly, with personalized and comprehensive messages. Also, a proactive customer service rep will do their best to attend to all calls promptly.
Clients are keen and they’ll soon start to realize that you are going that extra mile to offer them the most personalized services. When your clients feel that they’re cared for, they’re more likely to request a retainer or continue to use your services.
Proactive communication earns your clients’ trust
You’ve probably heard of the common saying that trust is earned not given. The same applies to your business. A recent study on the relationship between trust, loyalty and customer service revealed that the loyalty and choice of brand for 95% of the consumers in the case study were influenced by the customer service they received.
A client can also recognize a proactive communicator. They’ll appreciate the effort you are putting to ensure that they get the best products and services. As a result, customers will begin to trust you more.
Proactive communication boosts productivity
Proactive customer service reps work hard to prevent any possible emerging issues. They double-check all products to ensure they are in the best working conditions. On top of that, their messages are well-thought and their answers to any questions are comprehensive. Phone calls are answered promptly to prevent dealing with a frustrated client. Any missed calls are returned as soon as possible.
As a result, overall productivity is improved. Less time and fewer resources will be wasted trying to solve complaints. Customer service reps will have foreseen the problem and taken the necessary measures to prevent further damage.
Proactive communication improves credibility
As a proactive communicator, your PR team will sense that a certain controversy is slowly brewing about a certain product, service, or story. In such a case, the public relations team will quickly take measures to alleviate any negative repercussions to the client.
For instance, PR teams can decide to convince a local influencer or news reporter to tell a positive story. Your audience will learn why your products are different from the rest. And, they’ll feel more confident when buying your goods and services.
Also, if a brand has proactive customer service personnel, the company is viewed as a leader in its field. These organizations aren’t just seen as after money, they’re perceived as offering real value to customers. These organizations are viewed as more deserving and better than their competition.
Proactive communication minimizes future challenges
An occasional crisis is inevitable in any business. But how you tackle the crisis determines how many more similar crises you are likely to face in the future. When a crisis has already happened, you’ll require a reactive strategy. Although this involves reactive communication to solve the current situation, a proactive thinker will take advantage of the situation to prevent the recurrence of a similar crisis.
For example, say you have a solar lamp company. As a proactive communicator, how best would you solve a complaint that your solar lamps stop working after being used for just one week? The reactive strategy to solve the crisis would be to replace the faulty ones with working ones.
On the other hand, a proactive communicator will not only replace the lamps but will also share ideas on how to troubleshoot them in case they aren’t functioning as expected. On top of that, they’ll dig deeper to find out the root cause of the problem to prevent any future failures.
Tips For Being A Proactive Communicator
Here are a few tips to help you become a proactive communicator.
- Be an active listener
Pay attention to all the details. Clients will feel cared for and are likely to open up about any concerns they may have with your product.
- Apologize when something goes wrong.
Remember your clients are your business’ most valued possession. When things go wrong, do not throw the blame on them (or anyone else). Apologize and handle the problem immediately.
- Answer all questions
Sometimes a client may keep on asking questions that may seem irrelevant and repetitive. However, be patient and slowly, yet comprehensively respond to all of them.
- Enquire to know your customer’s needs
At times, a client may be complaining about a product that from your judgment is working perfectly. But, it may be that the product doesn’t match the needs of your customer. A good idea is to politely inquire why they are not satisfied with the product. Then, where possible recommend the product that you think matches the exact needs of the client.
- Ask for feedback
The best way to know whether you are going in the right direction is through feedback. Thus you must encourage customers to leave feedback. For instance, if they buy something online, request them to leave a review. You can also include suggestion boxes. Or, you can send a follow-up email or make a call to ask how well the product serves them. They’ll not only feel cared for but you’ll also get a chance to see what they think about your products.
The benefits of proactive communication are undeniable. You’ll not only gain your customers’ loyalty and boost the productivity of your workforce, but you’ll also alleviate negative reactions.