While we read a lot about how to provide quality customer experience to the millennials through business interactions, little has been said about improving customer experience of the elderly. When you have an elderly customer at the other end of the line, you should treat them very differently from the way you deal with your millennial customers.
Dealing with an elderly customer comes with its own unique challenges. You cannot deal with them the way you can deal with millennials and middle-aged. The reasons behind this are-
- Most of them are not that tech-savvy
- Health deterioration has led to hearing loss and memory loss among the elderly
- They have a hard time remembering things and therefore keeps repeating themselves.
- They communicate slower
- They do not like being patronized
Elderly people often find it hard to understand the basics of modern technology like fixing the simplest computer issue or resolving a billing problem. Therefore, a customer service agent needs to give extra attention while attending their calls.
Here are some suggestions for making the interaction go smoothly.
1. Treat Them with Respect
Seniors often feel like they are being patronized or belittled by young agents even when it is not so. Therefore, an agent needs to be extra cautious about while talking to them. Instead of talking down to elderly customers, the agent must recognize their wisdom and treat them with respect.
If it’s taking longer to reach a solution due to their slower communication, an agent must not let frustration show. Working with them in a non-condescending tone often achieves much better results.
2. Write It Down
Deafness and forgetfulness are often the most common elements that comes with age and they make getting the message across a challenge. Therefore, writing down the information on a notepad or email can make the whole process a lot easier and help them in a better way.
3. Give Coupons
Recognizing the economic standing of the senior customers is the first step of forging a lasting relationship with your senior customers. Living off their retirement funds, seniors can benefit from special discounts and coupons. If you can provide them with special discounts whenever possible, it will create a good relationship between you and your elderly customers who will get a strong sense of customer experience.
4. Patience is Virtue
Seniors often take longer to make a decision, understand a request, and respond. But that is no excuse for agents to show their annoyance or frustration. On the contrary, patience is the key here. Agents need to slowdown, listen, and gather all information. And once they do that, dealing with senior customers gets a lot easier.
5. Maintain a Cheerful and Helpful Attitude
While the millennials prefer self-help tools, senior customers are still mostly old-school – they prefer talking to a live agent, either face-to-face or over the phone. Therefore, agents taking the calls should maintain a cheerful and helpful attitude to give the senior customers a good customer service experience.
6. Lend an Ear
Many of the elderly customers are lonely and do not even have someone to talk to. Therefore, they ted to talk more even while discussing business with a live human agent. Sharing stories or talking excessively makes them feel better and listening to them goes a long way to create a pleasant experience for them. So, do not cut them off while they are sharing their stories. It will help you resolve the problem and provide them with outstanding customer satisfaction.
While it is not guaranteed that all the elderly customers will have a great customer experience even when you follow the tips mentioned above, but these tips will definitely help you improve their experience and earn their loyalty.