Communication is the cornerstone of quality customer service. While it’s important to have the right tools and training to meet customer expectations, none of that matters if a baseline, mutual understanding can’t be met. Quality customer service is often the only thing separating a business from its competition, which is why it’s more important than ever to invest in the customer experience.
For many organizations, a commitment to offering stellar service means working with a bilingual receptionist. Each year, our nation grows more and more diverse. Failing to offer bilingual customer service means failing to meet customers where they’re at. Make no mistake: by sticking solely with English, you risk alienating a huge share of the market.
If you’re considering working with a bilingual virtual receptionist, allow us to guide you through a few of the benefits of bilingualism in the workplace:
Minimize Communication Barriers
Human beings are simple creatures; more than anything, we want to be understood by the people around us. In the United States, this can be more of a challenge than you might expect. While there are more than 52 million Spanish speakers in the country, most organizations rely on English to communicate with patients, customers and clients. That’s where a bilingual receptionist can come into play.
One of the biggest benefits of having a receptionist is the chance to communicate clearly and completely with callers. A bilingual receptionist can quickly get on the same page as a Spanish-speaking caller, asking clarifying questions and addressing their concerns with professionalism. In turn, your staff will have more free time to devote to their own to-do lists. It’s a win-win for everyone involved.
By minimizing communication barriers, a bilingual receptionist can also help inform and educate callers about your organization. You might have a detailed website that goes over your policies and procedures in English, but for foreign language speakers or those not fluent in English, the specifics can be hard to parse out. A receptionist always works as the voice of your business, but never more so than when talking with customers who don’t speak English. This is one of the biggest benefits of being bilingual in the medical field – by reducing the chance of miscommunications, you get staff and patients on the same page from the very first conversation.
Build Customer Loyalty
Not every business offers bilingual receptionist services. By speaking to customers in their preferred language, you have the opportunity to create serious brand loyalty. Callers will fondly remember the polite, professional service you extended to them in their language. It’s not an experience people soon forget.
In fact, that customer loyalty may be contagious. Because bilingual virtual receptionists are somewhat uncommon, callers may be eager to refer their friends and family your way. It’s hard to overestimate the value that clear communication adds to the average phone conversation. By investing in bilingual receptionist services, you also invest in your customer relationships. It’s not hard to see how lucrative referrals might start rolling in.
It’s a simple fact: people prefer to communicate in their native language. Even those with conversational English skills may find themselves frustrated by an organization’s lack of bilingual support. Most of the world might understand some English, but to really build customer loyalty, you’ve got to speak to people on their terms, not yours. If you’re eager to build long-term customer loyalty, a bilingual receptionist is one of the best investments you can make in your organization.
Tap into New Markets
A bilingual customer representative can also help you extend your organization’s reach in your community and beyond. Word-of-mouth referrals from satisfied customers are practically inevitable once you begin offering bilingual customer support. But to really imagine your potential for growth, consider the big picture. As more and more businesses move to e-commerce and sell to customers across the globe, it’s important to be able to communicate with people of all backgrounds and experiences.
When you take a bilingual approach to your customer service, you reach a larger demographic worldwide. Don’t be surprised if you start hearing from more people eager to engage with your business. Can you afford to miss out on such opportunities? Most businesses can’t, which is why it’s so important to partner with a bilingual virtual receptionist.
Eliminate Caller Frustrations
Customer service professionals work hard to satisfy callers and defuse tense situations. When a person calls in angry, frustrated, or upset, it’s up to the receptionist to identify problems and come up with solutions. Language barriers throw a wrench into such efforts. If a caller only speaks Spanish while your receptionist only speaks English, for instance, the conversation is a recipe for frustration and miscommunication, making it far more likely that an initial small frustration balloons into a larger problem. A bilingual customer service representative changes the dynamic significantly.
Conflict resolution is impossible without clear communication. Of the many bilingual receptionist duties, this is perhaps the most important. Once communication barriers are eliminated, it’s easy to understand a caller’s frustrations and work to resolve them quickly and professionally. By winning over callers, receptionists also gain the opportunity to solicit the kind of feedback that’s necessary for the growth and long-term success of their organization.
Get an Edge on the Competition
It can be hard to stand out from the crowd these days. Given the increased globalization brought on by the popularity of e-commerce, businesses are no longer competing just for local customers. Indeed, to stay competitive, many organizations opt to market themselves far beyond their region. Of course, when it comes time to do business with far flung corners of the globe, you’ve got to be ready to speak to international customers. A bilingual receptionist is the solution.
You don’t get a second chance at a first impression. When it comes time to win over new customers, you’ve got to offer them the experiences, products, and services they need. Failing to deliver on the customer experience is more common than you might expect – especially when it comes to bilingual support.
When it comes time to set yourself apart from the competition, there’s no better option than offering bilingual services. You’ll immediately increase your engagement with your existing community of customers. They’ll feel more connected and understood by your business. This, in turn, frequently leads to word-of-mouth referrals. By positioning your organizations as a professional, global brand, people will be more likely to put their faith in you and give your offerings a try. That’s the power of bilingual customer service!
Boost Your Professional Image
Consider the last time you dialed a major Fortune 500 company’s 800 number. Odds are good that the auto attendant offered services in both English and Spanish. These major corporations have huge, diverse customer bases and can afford to speak to callers in their preferred languages. Thanks to bilingual virtual receptionists, so too can you and your organization.
Simply having the option to speak to an agent in their preferred language will do a lot to impress callers. Many people associate bilingual customer service offerings with big corporations who spare no expense to win over callers. You don’t have to have a huge administrative support budget to impress your customer base, though. A simple partnership with a bilingual receptionist service can speak volumes about your values, priorities, and goals.
With a bilingual receptionist covering your phones, you send a clear message to callers of all backgrounds. Simply having such a professional available lets callers know that you value diversity, clear communication, and the experiences of your customers. It’s a huge boon to your professional image – don’t be surprised if you see an uptick in the number of positive reviews left online about your business.
Speaking with callers in their native language is an excellent way to earn loyalty and motivate them to share their experiences with friends and loved ones. By demonstrating your professionalism in this way, you’re sure to earn new and repeat business for years to come.
Try Our Bilingual Receptionist Service Now
Why don’t more organizations adopt a bilingual approach to their customer communications? Many businesses assume that bilingual virtual receptionist services are too expensive for their budgets. In reality, a call center with Spanish-speaking agents usually offers affordable rates for businesses of all kinds. At MAP Communications, we offer a free trial for new clients.
Imagine seven days of a professional bilingual virtual receptionist answering your inbound calls. If you’re not won over after the week is up, there’s no obligation to continue using MAP’s services. With so much to gain, why not give us a try?
Here are some related articles you might be interested in:
How a Virtual Receptionist Improves Customer Connections
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