Canned messages, also known as canned responses, are usually predefined answers to frequently asked questions, which can be used during daily communications to provide quick and accurate responses. Properly used, canned messages can be a great tool to improve both your support efficiency and effectiveness. This article will lead you on the way to maximizing the power of canned messages.
Personalization and targeting are always welcome. Adding a human touch to the canned messages can ensure customers that they are talking with a real person rather than a robot. If possible, try to integrate some personalization when composing a canned message. For example, if you are using a live chat system for customer communication, instead of sending the same greeting to all the customers, you can simply add a “customer name” in the canned message to show the customers you know them. Live chat transcripts can be a great source for inspiring ideas on how to best personalize your canned messages.
If you have set up dozens of canned messages, finding what you are looking for within seconds may become a challenge. Categorizing these messages will help. You just need to organize the messages into different categories based on a certain criterion, such as products, departments, different stages in the sales funnel, etc.
Take Comm100 for example, live chat and email marketing are our two most popular products. We created two main categories for each product sub-categories and then further divided them into more specific sub-categories, such as general introduction, pricing, benefits and so on. This gives us a clear direction to find the right canned messages in a timely manner.
Some questions may sound similar but are not completely the same. To give each customer an accurate answer, you can’t just copy and paste the canned message which is usually more a template to work on than a final answer. Instead, you may need to make some edits based on the specific context.
For example, if there are three solutions for one common issue and you prepare a standard canned response. Many customers may have already tried one or two solutions before contacting you. In this case, to deliver a quality service, you obviously can’t just send the standard canned message to the customers, leaving them to find out what really works for them. Do your homework; customers will appreciate it.
Some canned messages may be long and detailed, especially for tough issues. It is convenient and effective for email or ticket support. But when it comes to real-time support, customers may feel overwhelmed by such messages. You will find it helpful to split the long canned messages to shorter ones and give customers the chance to respond.
Imagine you are talking on the phone with a customer who needs a step-by-step solution. You will probably ask for his/her feedback after explaining every step to ensure that all the steps have been understood correctly. It also applies to live chat support or any other real-time communications. Simple and clear responses are easier to be accepted by customers.
There are surely some other tactics for fully utilizing the power of canned messages. The bottom line is whether canned messages can be an effective tool depends on how you use it. In addition to knowing the tactics, training your team to use them correctly is indispensable. In fact, canned message is also a great internal training tool, especially for new team members.