Technology comes closer every day to offering a central device where we can do absolutely everything we need to do. Actually, the technology is there and it’s the service providers who have not quite completed this circle. Major organizations and institutions such as banks, media, utilities and medical facilities brought this into the main stream and others such as department, big box and drug stores and restaurants have wisely following suit. Workout facilities, salons, golf courses and bakeries are seeing the advantage of not only doing business online but creating apps to make that experience easier and better. We have apps for operating our garage doors and security systems.
Children’s activity centers are no different. In fact, having that presence on the smartphone screen is the very reason that many owners are putting technology to work for them in improving customer service in their facilities. Your facility’s parents use many forms of communication to manage their families’ daily lives. Whether they prefer email, texts or phone calls, they are all – almost without exception – communicating on their mobile devices. A mobile app offers several other communication options on their devices of preference. The advantage to appearing on the home screen of the device that most people use for everything from banking to entertainment has become obvious.
Here are some ways that your mobile app can improve customer service:
- Add Value to Relationships
Adding value is critical to the app’s success. When it comes to their children, parents want to have complete and immediate information and they want to be able to act on it when it’s convenient to them. By offering easy access to the activities and important data that are important to them, parents are compelled to use the app often.
A mobile app:
- Speeds up tasks parents do with you.
- Gets parents what they want when they want it.
- Keeps parents up to date.
- Makes doing business with your organization very convenient.
Parents can do things like view class schedules and enroll in and pay for the classes they prefer that their children take – in just a matter of seconds.
- Openly Communicate and Meet Expectations
Communication is a huge part of meeting parents’ expectations. Parents “invest” in the places where their children learn – regardless of what type of activity it is. Having a convenient way to communicate is not simply wanted, it’s expected. This investment allows you to open a direct line of communication with them that welcomes two-way traffic. Parents appreciate this.
Push Notifications allow organizations to push out special announcements and alerts to parents. This works hand-in-hand with advertising efforts because special events and classes can be promoted with minimal cost and effort. Emergency notices – such as bad weather closings – can be delivered fast. And because they appear on the parents’ smartphones, they get the news regardless of where they are.
Monthly updates are another way you can provide information to parents that they will appreciate having. This is the perfect way to express reminders, reinforce policies and announce event dates and times.
The two-way part of this is that parents also have access through the app to their account, class listings and schedules, skills, calendars and photos/videos. Their ability to do business with you becomes 24/7 and is advantageous to everyone!
- Put Idle Time to Good Use
Parents sit in lines in many places: carpools, doctor’s offices and hair salons. Your app can be right there among the other apps on smartphones that they find valuable. It’s easier and quicker for parents to do all the administrative tasks they need to do with your gym through the app so they jump on and use everything that they can get to while they have idle time.
- Search for preferred classes.
- Enroll and pay for classes.
- Look at the activities calendar.
- Order apparel and team t-shirts.
- Look through competition videos.
- Select pictures to save for themselves or order.
- Review their child’s skills progress.
Parents find answers to questions for themselves and feel empowered through being completely up-to-date with their child’s progress and the gym’s activities.
- Free Staff to Provide Other Relationship-Centered Services
Because the app puts the parents in self-serve mode, front office staff is freed from answering so many administrative questions and can spend time discussing more meaningful topics and building relationships with parents. Mundane data entry is eliminated from office staff responsibilities and is practically error-free since parents enter it themselves.
The features that do require staff effort, such as push notifications, are simple and quick to complete and save staff from spending huge blocks of time with individual emails and phone calls.
You and your staff can talk in-depth with parents about skills and progress and get to know the strengths and the needs of their students and families more intimately.
- Save Time for Parents and Show Them More
Time is a hot commodity for parents. Using their app, Peak Kids is able to provide cutting edge services that help them to make use of idle time and make plans when their needs are top of mind.
The mobile app also helps you to expose more information to parents by:
- Sharing the demand for classes so they can enroll immediately.
- Delivering notifications that could change their plans for the day.
- Promoting sell out details with events .
Your mobile app keeps parents on the forefront of your communications and helps you to create a “demand factor.” Parents can quickly enroll their children before their preferred class sells out and know the changes in classes as they happen.
- Be the Cool Gym
Offering the mobile app can help you develop a cool factor for your facility. Parents have a better way of doing business with you and enjoy the value and convenience that using your app provides. It delivers a distinction from others offering similar services and enhances your brand by placing you a step above as a professionally tech savvy facility.
A mobile app is a great tool to use in conjunction with other customer service strategies to offer continuous improvements to your customer service and enhance the experience your customers have.