It’s not how we’ve always done it, and that’s a good thing. Here is a guide to creating a customer experience with a millennial state of mind.
Millennials’ communication styles are different from prior generations. Younger workers appear to have a clear preference for visual content, particularly videos. When faced with an issue, they’ll watch a YouTube tutorial to figure out how to fix their broken vacuum rather than dust off the text-heavy owner’s manual.
How will your business connect to this generation? How do you create a customer experience that will make an impact and create a loyal customer out of this generation? Chances are, many of your employees are part of this generation and the customers they’re interacting with are their peers.
Enabling your employees with the communication tools necessary to connect in the ways that are natural for them is essential in providing high-quality customer interactions that can improve satisfaction, increase referrals, and drop churn like it’s hot.
Business owners who pay attention and apply the technologies that are central to the millennial’s world do so by using the tools they already interact with on a day-to-day basis.
As you learn millennials’ language and communication styles, you’ll gain insight into creating a high-touch, personalized experience using software specialized just for that. Customized and highly personal is the key to creating a meaningful experience while simultaneously improving your bottom line.
Here are five key concepts that will help you break through the noise and tailor your customer experience to Millennials.
Millennials conduct copious amounts of research before they make just about any purchasing decision. Because so much is available, data has shown that millennials are more likely to make decisions for their money and their life based on their values.
A Nielsen report found that 73% of millennials will pay more for a product that is sustainable— and the word “sustainable” is equated with “trustworthiness” in a millennial’s mind.
Our millennials are people who been inundated with choices their whole lives and their generation is spoilt with them. You can bet the one thing — they know how to differentiate everything. The Millennial knows the better from the best — it’s kind of like knowing the difference between a pair of Yeezys and a pair of Feezys, or Ray Bans from Ray Berries.
Your product and team have a story. Tell it with transparency to invite connection with people both in and out of your company.
Trustworthiness and transparency allow you to connect with customers in an authentic way. Go beyond the taglines and offer information. Present knowledge that isn’t typically required or shared on a product label or business brief — such as the brand story.
Tell how your brand may be contributing positively to the world, and how much your company upholds honesty and integrity with its employees and clients.
It’s often independent initiatives that provide this information to millennials, but this extra effort is important — don’t pass up the opportunity to do it. You extra effort could be the very thing that sets your company apart from the competitors.
Have your social media engagement up-to-date and interesting to create community. Opt for live-streams with a webcam recording software as opposed to a formal press release information.
Couple these well-founded efforts with communication software that speaks the way millennials do, and you’ve found yourself a pair of listening ears. Have your spots at least for 8 seconds — that’s the amount of time it takes for millennials to decide whether they’ll move on to their next option.
Be careful with using AI to completely replace your customer support. If not done properly, your AI effort can cost you customers and loyalty.
G2 Crowd, for example, embraces this concept by creating personalized videos to share with their potential customers.
Using screen recording software and annotated screenshots have enabled the company to grow to over $7m in its sales pipeline because of the connection aspect that videos provide.
Matt Lazares, G2 Crowd Enterprise Account Executive, said of video capture software “…We are able to reach out to people that we typically can’t connect with.” (Read more here.)
Counter-intuitively, but not surprising, millennials value efficiency and speed over service.
They are, after all, the generation of convenience. Quick, efficient, speedy — all reasons why products like cupcakes, makeup, and even bike parts can be bought from vending machines.
It stands to reason that the customer experience journey today should steer away from clunky information portals and automated messages and focus on talking with customers the way they talk to each other. Use intuitive apps to show exactly the message that needs to be conveyed.
Find ways to showcase your product through tutorial videos, use cases, and images that can be key to building loyalty.
Frustration exists in communication when messages aren’t clear. Lousy messages are prevalent in companies from customer support to onboarding, marketing, and sales departments (to name a few).
Take a close look at your customer and potential customer you’re trying to work with. Think about the work required to answer a question that’s rather easy to show, but arduous to explain via chat/email/over the phone. All customers have their preferences — but your millennial customers are special and you want to reach them.
There’s also the inconvenience of schedules not matching up to jump on a call and do a “quick” demo. Think screen recording software — millennials love it.
A brilliant solution is screen recording software. It works like this: a sales rep takes a recording of her screen. She can explain every step of her demonstration clearly as a talking head in the top corner of the computer screen as she simultaneously runs through her process.
The person may even use the GIF creator to show another client a quick method to navigating her product’s dashboard–super simple, and easier seen than told.
The use of a screen recorder, snipping tools, and a GIF creator completely cuts through wordy, textual barriers to deliver precise communication. Using a screen has to be authentic — it’s real. A screen is efficient — no-extras communication needed. It’s also a sleek, streamlined communication tool that optimizes the customer experience.
Customer support teams using product management tools like screen record and screen share mitigate time-consuming (and frustration-inducing) processes.
Product management tools help them promote the effectiveness of their product and actively soothe the customers who are most likely to churn. Utilizing these tools creates an experience where information is clearly stated without pain points that arise when using chat, phone calls, and tutorials that don’t cover specific questions.
Why not make a quick video to show exactly how your product works?
A staggering 5 billion videos are watched on YouTube every day. (That’s billion, with a b.) Our society is used to watching videos, likely because video content is a great tool to learn, easy to consume, and a convenient way to digest and retain information on-the-go.
Understanding the value of video is huge for sales teams. Today’s customers are 95% more likely to remember a call to action after watching a video, compared to 10 percent who read a call to action in text format.
Videos and GIFs create a unique experience from other ways of receiving information.
There’s data to prove that your videos will be a hit: a Ragan study reported that more than 60 percent of millennials say they understand information faster when it’s communicated visually, versus just 7 percent who don’t.
Nontraditional schedules are becoming the norm thanks to innovations in technology and companies vying to have competitive benefits packages (like extended parental leave policies, unlimited PTO, etc.).
Additionally, millennials are prepared to work after they leave the office, and often do. These facts have contributed to the demand for digital, cloud-based collaboration tools and productivity software. Being able to provide digital communication outside the 9-to-5 is invaluable, and it may also be the only time to reach some of your customers.
Providing content with video recording software that can be referenced at any time is not only convenient, but ensures that you’ve got an evergreen piece of material with the potential to make an impact the more it’s passed around and viewed.
Businesses are shifting to cloud-based collaboration software solutions and consequently find eager and adaptable users (both in-house and for communicating with customers). Providing visual references to your customer makes the customer feel that you’re aware of and sensitive to their time and specific needs, further nurturing the customer journey.
Consolidating the number of products an individual uses is key for millennials’ need for efficiency.
Using screen recording software takes a small amount of time and helps to avoid any miscommunication, because of the personalized demonstration aspect. Clear, concise interactions are key to making customer interactions positive (and ensuring they’ll continue the conversation).
In most cases, the ability to send a quick and easy video recording prevents company reps from having to hop on a call to explain something to a customer or keep a customer engaged in a chat (and good luck if you type something wrong).
Chances are high that you have experienced a time when you, perhaps begrudgingly, spent too much time on the phone with customer support or hearing a sales pitch. The right tools can eliminate those issues.
Visual communication appeals to customer success and support, product, and sales teams in businesses because of the intuitive nature of the product and concentration of a myriad of connection-driven needs in one hub.
Companies save time, and their customers save time. Businesses also use the product management tools of this communication software in a wide variety of ways, including:
Generations Y and Z are heavily visual creatures. If you’re already struggling to connect with this subset — it’s time to sprint so that you don’t miss out on connecting with the next round of tech-savvy humans that are beginning their entrance into the workforce.
Younger individuals today are growing up with the internet, smartphones, and social media as a rule, not an exception.
They’re already well-versed in the areas that millennials had to learn. Millennials may remember the sound of dial-up internet while Generation Z doesn’t know life before WiFi.
According to Forbes, Gen Z individuals use an average of five screens (compared to a millennial’s three). These include a smartphone, laptop, TV, desktop, tablet, and even a smartwatch. This drives home the importance of shifting toward value in technology.
What’s more, if they’re interested in learning something new, Gen Zers will take it upon themselves to learn it.
Thirty-two percent of Gen Z (7 to 24-year-olds) watch lessons online and conduct research by watching videos. Using visuals will help you to secure Gen Z as well.
Affecting the customer experience all comes down to authentic communication, communication style, and the ease with which you do it. The common thread above is the significant need for more video content and adaptation to communication software.
Find productivity software that employs features such as screen recorder, snipping tools, and GIF creators. These are the features that will help you talk with your millennial customers to create a positive experience.
Someone who has a positive experience with your company is more likely to become a loyal customer.
Seventy percent of the customer’s journey is dictated by how they feel they are being treated. When you’re using your video capture software to walk a customer through a process or a complicated question be authentic.
Use the technology to facilitate a deeper connection with your customer. You will have created a millennial-approved, positive and forward-thinking customer experience.
Joe Martin is currently the GM and VP of Marketing at CloudApp, a visual collaboration tool. He has more than 13 years of experience of marketing in the tech industry. Prior to his role at CloudApp, Martin was the Head of Social Analytics at Adobe where he led paid social strategy and a research team providing strategic guidance to organizations within the company. He has an M.B.A. from the University of Utah’s David Eccles School of Business, Executive education in Entrepreneurship from Stanford Graduate School of Business, a B.S. in Finance from the University of Utah and a digital marketing certificate from The Wharton School of Business at the University of Pennsylvania. His work has been published in the Associated Press, Wall Street Journal, NY Times, and other top tier outlets.