Education

7 ways that live chat boosts your customer experience

Here are 7 ways that live chat can help with your marketing efforts. Use these live chat tips to help improve your processes and increase your...

Two characters speaking to one another through laptops

In today’s fast paced environment, people want answers and they want them quickly without waiting days for someone to answer via email. Read these live chat tips to see how your school, business or organisation can benefit from having this functionality.

This is no different in the world of education, parents want all the answers to their questions before making any decisions. By engaging in conversation with a potential school, parents and potential pupils can see if they are a good fit.

Schools that are slow in responding to requests, or do not respond at all, will put off any potential students and parents. Having clear, honest and open conversations across all channels makes every experience feel human, helpful and efficient - helping them to find the right match.

But how can live chat help you?

Live chat is the new hot tool for marketers as it allows us to have real-time engagement with customers and website users. While live chat is about providing a faster and more efficient communication, ultimately customers only really care about getting the answer they are looking for, so you must find that balance of speed and providing the right information.

Here are 7 ways that live chat boosts your customer experience:

  • Make a real connection with customers straight away, for example, the use of an auto-greeting from the start of the conversation provides a more human and personal interaction, “hello, how may I help you today?”. As consumers, we prefer brands that we can relate to, brands that we can trust. Once we have that connection and trust, we will go back to that brand. This is certainly the case in education, too. Providing a human engagement makes the interaction feel more personal.
  • Customer service is an integral part of any business and customers expect a business to act fast to offer support – if you provide help when needed, you are likely to gain the trust of a parent who will then return to you as a trusted source of information.
  • Utilising live chat removes the need for holding queues on a phone in order to speak to a human. Whilst also enabling you to assist instantly, answering queries quickly and effectively.
  • Easy access from anywhere – as long as someone is connected to the internet, they can access the live chat feature on your site, again, without that need to wait on the phone to get an answer.
  • Live chat can help you to be more cost efficient – less demand for phone support for people to answer questions, therefore less need for phone equipment, or the need for a specific team just to answer calls. There are plenty of free live chat features around, for example, HubSpot offers a free live chat integration!
  • Utilising a live chat feature can increase your marketing effectiveness – live chat features allow you to greet customers with custom messages and engage immediately, while messages can also be tailored to specific page on your website. For example, if a parent is looking on your school admissions page, live chat can display a message like: “want to find out more about our admissions process?”, and if the prospect is interested it can direct them to what they need. On HubSpot, you can set up a chain of questions in which potential customers may need help with, but if the query goes beyond that, the chat conversations are sent directly into the inbox of the team. That way a human is able to pick up the conversation and provide further help to customers.
  • Lowers handling time –live chat allows customers to ask potential follow up questions if the chat does not answer their question straight away, enabling them to get to the answer quicker than an email or phone call would.

Obviously we cannot always work around the clock and there isn’t always going to be someone on the other end of the live chat, which is why it must also work while offline too. Here are a few things to consider:

What frequently asked questions can you build into a chatbot to help users solve their problem?

How can you integrate your chat with self-service resources like your blog content to make it searchable through a chat bot?

Can you collect some important information and set expectations on response time for admissions enquiries?

Conversations lead to good customer service, and good customer service leads to a happy parents and students – keep your prospects at the heart of what you do and leave a lasting impression, that way they will come back to you, or even refer you to friends and family.

Ready to implement an inbound approach to marketing and admissions?

Find out more about what inbound marketing in education looks like.

Laura Gates

Laura Gates

Laura is a recent graduate from the University of Lincoln with an MA in sports journalism, and prior to that a BA in Media Production. She has experience in digital marketing, working as a content manager and digital marketing assistant.

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