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Millennials: “Help Me Help Myself”

As millennials enter the workforce and begin to claim their lion’s share of purchasing power, it becomes more and more important to offer them the customer service they expect

Tuesday June 20, 2017

Millennials are officially America’s largest generation according to the U.S. Census Bureau. As millennials enter the workforce and begin to claim their lion’s share of purchasing power, it becomes more and more important to offer them the customer service they expect as a generation that has grown up with the immediate satisfaction of the internet.

Online Community Breeds Independence

Although it may seem paradoxical, millennials are as independent as they are relational in their online pursuits. When considering a purchase, this tension plays out in the following manner: the millennial consumer will look online to see how other people feel about the product, read reviews, and compare features and prices to alternate options. Then, when they are satisfied with the evidence they’ve gathered, they return their verdict independently. This entire rigmarole can take place anytime, anywhere from the consumer’s smartphone. Millennials are their own detectives, researchers, and judges when making their purchasing choices.

What Does This Mean For Customer Service?

This self-reliance applies not only to purchasing, but to maintenance of their purchases and investments. For problems with their tech products and tools, millennials turn to search engines – or interactive voice apps like Siri. For problems or routine inquiries into their services, including utilities, phone service, and banking, millennials still want to self-serve, to solve their problems and make their decisions independently. Automated customer service, then, still holds an important place in meeting the needs and preferences of the largest generation; and their youth means that automated customer service will be relevant for a long time.

Customer Satisfaction in Self-Service

While millennials like to problem-solve and find answers on their own, they are also used to the immediate gratification of the internet. This applies to self-service as well, and companies looking to deploy customer service communications platforms should consider something else about millennials – this generation scores much lower than previous generations in terms of brand and customer loyalty. If you disappoint millennials, they will leave – and they may never be back.

For companies, these trends boil down to one critical aspect of millennial behaviour: they want satisfying self-service. Poorly organized, badly worded, confusing automated phone systems are unacceptable – your company will risk not only the expensive consequence of a customer transferring to a live agent, but you risk losing the customer altogether.

Logical, easy to use automated systems; multiple modes of communication; feature-rich but intuitive interactive self-service – make sure your customer service platform meets these criteria, and your millennial customers will keep coming back.

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