Smargasy logo on a black background.

Empathy can’t be automated

It seems like there’s automation for everything these days. Digital customer service is rapidly becoming the norm.

While that’s great for things like ordering something online or having a simple problem solved quickly, it shouldn’t replace the human element when it comes to a customer’s experience with you.

One problem with everything being automated is that personalized communication suffers. You might offer convenience and speed, but without the human touch, your customers feel less connected to your brand. Ultimately, you become forgettable.

In a world where you need to stand out from your competitors, it’s important not to lose what makes you memorable.

That doesn’t mean you have to become best buddies with your customers. You don’t need to stick to antiquated modes of customer service either. You just need to include the human element, so your customer doesn’t feel like they’re on a conveyor belt.

Remember, if you treat your customer like another number, they’ll treat you as another number too.

I have a friend who is obsessed with the latest digital tech. He absolutely loves it. He’s like some kind of Nostradamus for the latest advances in automation software, often predicting the next giant leap. He doesn’t give the impression that he cares about “the human element” as long as something is done efficiently.

But here’s the thing, he can’t remember over half the brands he has interacted with who automated everything perfectly. What he can recall with perfect clarity, though, is a small business that sells model painting kits, another one of his passions. Their checkout page is a bit wonky, their after-sales emails could do with some tweaks, and they don’t have chat support. Yet he is fiercely loyal to their brand.

I asked him why, considering they wouldn’t pass his automation test.

His answer was simple: “They listen to me.”

He only has to send an email, and they reply within hours, answering his questions in depth. They often include extra information in their replies to him, sharing in his enthusiasm about a specific paint or fixative. They have a flagship store he regularly visits, despite being a bit out of his way and their online competitors being significantly cheaper. It’s the experience they provide that makes him take that journey.

I know nothing about kit model paints, but I know my friend feels like a valued customer.

Do your customers feel valued?

If you found this article helpful, please share it!

Want more

Scroll to Top