Customer Service At The Speed Of Light ©

As more and more professionals use e-mail and the Internet in their daily business, the time has come to imagine and implement new ways of doing business with this technology.

Along those lines, here's a few proven techniques to use technology to provide superior customer service, faster:

  1. Use your e-mail program to fine tune a few "templates" for use as customer follow up letters. For example, create a form letter to:

    • Confirm appointments;
    • Provide a list for what to bring to the closing
    • Recommend your favorite lenders and contractors
    • Supply the numbers for local utility companies et cetera.

    You can then simply add a few personalized details to these templates and use them for customer follow up!

    Not only will you be able to offer faster service with these ready-to-go form letters, but the messages will be better written, and you will save yourself the time of writing the same type of letters repetitively.

  2. Use WorldMerge to send "mail-merged" e-mail newsletters. This works just like "mail-merge" with your contact manager, only with e-mail instead. Imagine the customer service impact of:

    • Sending a monthly newsletter to all of your contacts, for free!
    • Updating all of your buyers with current interest rates once a week, with the click of a button!
    • Notifying the top agents in your marketplace with information about your new listing, moments after the sellers sign!
    • Distributing internal company memos, instantly, and without paper!

    This is exactly the kind of enhanced prospecting and increased productivity that technology has promised all along. For only $50 to purchase WorldMerge, you can't go wrong with this program!

  3. Learn to "attach" files to your e-mail communications. Once you learn that any file on your computer can be sent accross the Internet via e-mail, you start to become more effective by:

    • Sending MLS searches by e-mail, rather than mailing or faxing.
    • Including digital photos of properties with your e-mail messages.
    • Communicating through voice messages via e-mail too! A free program, PureVoice can be downloaded on-line and is very effective at recording quality voice messages that are highly compressed and send quickly. Visit http://www.eudora.com/purevoice to download a copy.

    It is important to note that you do not want to encumber all of your e-mail with attachments. However, when the information is important, or you need to impress a prospect, then these skills get the job done.

  4. Repalce your fax machine with the Internet. Most agents now have notebook computers, and are becoming truly portable, but still rely on the office fax machine. Speed up your response time, and eliminate carrying files made of paper with Internet faxing. Sites like www.efax.com and www.j2.com allow you to:

    • Send and receive your faxes through your email account
    • Electronically store and organize all of your faxes right on your hard disk
    • Create and use "mail lists" for broadcast faxing.
    • Have the ability to fill in forms, modify documents and then re-send; again, without ever actually printing.

    I've been using Internet faxing for years, and not only does it allow me to offer faster customer service, but saves me the cost of owning a fax machine and having a dedicated phone line to support it.

While there are more ways to speed up your customer service than just the five tips above. The key point that needs to be made is that the time has finally come where technology can be relied upon to make us more effective in the way we communicate. Now it's up to us to take advantage of it!

The content of this article is based on my seminars:
Customer Service at the Speed of Light
Thriving on the Internet
Stephen M. Canale
Contact Stephen

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