Do you mind holding Sir?

Back in 2017 we took a look at the need for speed as a key driver in achieving brand loyalty through great customer experiences.

At the time Forrester research ( indicated that the need for speed is a key driver in the ever-changing face of the customer service race for brand-loyalty. According to Forrester 73% of people say that having their time valued is the most important thing a company can do to provide them with great service. Seems fair enough.

Now, keeping our customers waiting on hold is not likely to win anybody any brownie points so I revisited an old favourite website that offers customers the opportunity to Tweet their frustrations with named organisations whilst they’re actually waiting – simple but genius.

Whilst it has customer input from frustrated customers around the world UK readers will be familiar with many household names making regular appearances;
Virgin Media tops the list of timewasters by a long way followed by the likes of Verizon, Delta Airlines, AT&T, United Airlines, Bank of America, Paypal and British Airways.

Customer comments (those that are printable anyway) include;

  • @sainsburys trying to call to discuss an order, been on hold for over 25mins so far. If you’re not going to answer the phones don’t put a number on your website. Poor!
  • @SwintonGroup I have been trying to speak to someone since last Saturday I’ve been on hold for 35 minutes just now! You sent me a letter informing me you need to confirm some details or you will cancel my car insurance tomorrow. Can you help?
  • Its a good job its not urgent that I talk to the @NatWest_Help Fraud team. 30 minutes on hold and counting… #timeforanewbank
  • @BritishGas totally disgusted… 44 minutes on hold to give a meter reading today to the house moving team #nocustomerservice
  • @British_Airways Please help, I have been on the phone on hold for 45 mins to your customer services, I need to know if my daughter can fly with us without a passport on Sunday- no appointments left at the passport office. Can I please speak to someone!

Whilst there’s little excuse for some of the wait times highlighted above it’s clear that being placed on hold is a real “No-No” for many customers – who knows when, or if, you’re going to come back to them.

WIIFY.pngSo this week I thought I’d share one of our most powerful techniques to help your customers understand and accept your reasons for placing them on hold. It’s called the WIIFY (What’s In It For You) technique – a great tool for helping them understand the benefits to them of waiting whilst you find the information you need to help them.

We’ve searched the FIT library and found a short clip where I share my insights around the WIIFY – we think it’s a real gold nugget you’ll be able to quickly adapt into your daily conversations

Try it and let us know how you get on – and in the meantime…keep FIT!

Hello... I'm Marie Cross

‘…and I’d love to include you in our growing list of readers who are discovering new, practical ways to develop remarkable service in their call, contact and customer service centres.’

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