Support Breakfast Podcast | Episode 3 – Beyond the queue

Welcome back to another episode of Support Breakfast!

You may have noticed that we have a new look! We are now sporting our very own Support Breakfast logo, a touching tribute to the life force that powers many a support star – coffee! We’re also now available on iTunes!

It wouldn’t be a Support Brekkie without the food – Dave is still experimenting with Huel, the nutritionally complete food (that’s not made of people), Sarah continues her commitment to consistency and Lisa declares that it’s far too early for breakfast. Conor then out-breakfast-ed us all with his tale of jalapeno scones and rosemary “spritz” from Bel Air.

Sadly, there were no appearances by Will Smith, or freestyle lyrical genius from Sarah.

After some technical difficulties with the mute function, we dove into our customer experiences for the week:

Conor filled us in on the history of Gmail vs GoogleMail and saved a customer’s day by correctly uncovering their actual email address. Sarah shared her own experience with Gmail, while Lisa puzzled over staging emails.

Dave had his turn to be wowed with a free jean repair from Nudie, all part of the service! We debated what a “lifetime” means in Nudie’s books.

We then jumped into this week’s topic, which is all about support life beyond the queue. We delve into the other side of what support teams get up to, besides our chats with customers.

Conor was blessed with a plethora of available channels; such as Intercom (emails and in-product chat) and tailored video tutorials.

At Buffer, Dave and the team utilise both video and GIF for showcasing processes and helping to troubleshoot bugs. Dave also introduced us to Buffer’s community events, like #Bufferchat, a weekly Twitter chat and their semi-regular in-person meetups.

We discovered that both the Buffer and Expensify’s onboarding teams tended to use Webinars for sales calls and Conor regularly has a go at them himself. Hint: it can sometimes feel like you’re talking to yourself.

Lisa totally sold us on the idea of MozCon, where support heroes (wo)man the stands and connect with their customers on another level. Moz even made their own 8-bit game, Roger, to commemorate the event:

We discussed the importance of regular site visits and meeting customers where they work, Sarah wrestled with the pros and cons of seeing customers interact with your product and coming face to face with things that don’t work as you expected.

We touched on phone support and how we do it, with scheduled calls at Timely and a dedicated support number with a voicemail at Moz.

We chatted about what else we’re working on at the moment:

Conor juggles account management responsibilities, with streamlining internal processes, product analysis and customer education. He introduces some cool ways in which Expensify connects with their customers, including Office hours and one-to-many workshops.

Sarah and Lisa both admit to a rampant addiction to Inbox Zero and how they both need to block project time into their working days to make sure everything gets done.

We all agreed with this blog post that was shared around the Support Driven community:

Lisa is working on internal help documentation and resources, to collect the information that is currently locked away in other employee’s minds.

With the beauty of technology, we travel to Cyprus, where Nomad-Sarah touts the importance of project work in providing the best support to your customers.

We learnt that at Kayako, where Nomad-Sarah previously worked, 20% of every support employee’s time was to be spent “outside of the queue”. Some used it for personal development, while others used it as a way to connect with customers in a different way (e.g. via case studies or webinars etc).

Sarah also showed us a hint of what the future might hold with the introduction of chatbots, which could potentially remove or automate low-value interactions, giving us more time for project work, and more rewarding high-value interactions.

Sarah also introduced us to Jason Lemkin, who makes a compelling argument for visiting your customers:

If any support breakfasters are in Cyprus, Jordan or Israel and fancy a chat with Sarah about support or breaking out of the queue, you can connect with her on Twitter @sarahleeyoga.

This week’s homework is to download the Rocket app, which allows you to use Slack emoji shortcuts across all of your Mac apps – much easier than using the emoji keyboard.

If you have a question about customer support that you’d like to hear us discuss, you can get in touch with us via Twitter or email.

We’d also love it if you Subscribed or Followed Support Breakfast on your favourite podcasting platform –  Soundcloud, iTunes, Stitcher or TuneIn – we’re on quite a number of them! 

You can also follow each of us individually on Twitter: @gentlethorns, @conorp, @davechapman & @sarahleyh.

See you next time!


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