The Running Commentary

The art of communication – Dialogue

call centre


So I have just had a really interesting experience with MTN, my mobile phone service provider, and their latest “courtesy call”.  This coupled with two other unsolicited calls I received caused me to write this post.

I guess I am hoping that this post reaches the people who put together call centre type campaigns….

Let me start by saying that any campaign must be begun with the intention of enriching your client experience with your brand…..

If you are soliciting business that has no hope of enriching my life then please do not call me. Don’t start a “call with you have been specially selected” this is a lie.  I have not been specially selected, you have randomly called me, this frustrates me even more. 

The next frustration that is felt by a consumer, that is interrupted in their day, is when the operator actually knows very little about the product and simply reads a script. I tested this notion on a person that called me today and blimey they were absolutely useless.  The conversation went something like this…

“Hello may I speak with <insert my name here>” I said “sure”  The operator says “I would like to set-up an appointment for a representative to see you about a “sports package” that can make you money”  I say “what is a sports package?” – simple question I think……..Silence….some more silence then I get… “hello I am the supervisor – can I help you?” I say “you guys called me” she says “I know”….”I would like to set-up an appointment for a representative to see you about a “sports package” that can make you money”….beautiful!!

Anyway this went on for a bit, my conclusion firmly entrenched that they were completely inept as far as completing the task and wait for it the “sports package” costs R 25 000 to R 40 000, but it comes with a 100% money back guarantee.

The nest poor soul was doing  a survey of the SAA brand….this poor guy was so scripted, that one word either side of the script caused him to tilt.  I say “I have not had an experience with the airline you are talking about – 1 Time” he says that’s fine just give me a rating, so as I “well okay then how about 10 then”, he says but how can you rate then if you have not used them!!! Shot – methinks the script is causing some confusion.

And so to the final (let’s hope) call of the day…..The courtesy call from MTN…..The call comes in when I am in a place where the signal reception is bad. I have this experience with MTN in two areas in Cape Town. So I say “look I am really sorry but the MTN signal is really bad here maybe we can do this later” she says….wait for it……..”I know I get that a lot!”

I had to end the call I was laughing so much……

Well this brings me to the point I was making in the beginning, none of these calls demonstrated any customer intent, they were all simply focused on achieving a goal, regardless of whether I wanted to hear it or not. I take these calls because I hope to use the experiences to improve our businesses own abilities. Thank you to the three, sorry four of you, that helped me today realise that finding out what your client wants is better than force feeding him information.

customer serviceDirect MarketingMarketing

Mike • September 21, 2009

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