HomeBUSINESSCustomer communication: why language is so important to the brand

Customer communication: why language is so important to the brand

Customer communication: “We focus on the customer.” A promise that many companies are happy to make. But everyday practice often, looks different when it comes to customer communication. Legal and technical jargon in letters, emails, or other texts often causes confusion and confusion among customers. But: More and more companies and authorities recognize the enormous importance of controlled and understandable language in customer communication as the key to success. How innovative software can provide valuable support here.

Complicated relationships, ancient language culture, and challenging legal terms. The insurance company or the bank that would like to inform their customers about new conditions in a letter is faced with a problem when writing the text. On the one hand, the complex content that needs to be conveyed must often be legally secure.

On the other hand, the language should be modern and clean so that the letter is worded to be understandable for all recipients. If this customer communication does not succeed, the customer first has a problem and then the company. Because if the recipient does not understand the letter’s content, it creates uncertainty and confusion. This results in written and telephone queries in the company’s service center.

Customer Communication Put To The Test

So that it doesn’t get that far in the first place, more and more companies and authorities are putting their language to the test. Do our customers understand our concern? Are we making ourselves clear and precise? Is the customer communication appreciative and at eye level with the recipients? The problem with this is that good texts are by no means easy to write—especially not when complicated technical terms have to be translated into a language that even lay people can understand. Specialists are at work at the control points of a company, although they have extensive know-how in their respective areas of focus. However, explaining complex relationships requires linguistic expertise and transparent rules. These are not available in many companies or are only inadequately implemented.

Introduce A Uniform Language With Software

Innovative and powerful software can close these gaps and function as proofreading. It optimizes texts’ comprehensibility, learns the respective corporate language, and checks its consistent implementation. Depending on the “tone of voice,” i.e., the individual tone of voice of a company with which it defines how it communicates about something, the software checks the implementation across all output channels.

As soon as the user activates the software, the graphic evaluation of the intelligibility test shows on a scale between green, yellow and red how easy or difficult this text is to understand. Foreign words, anglicisms, and complex sentence structures are marked in red. In the next column, the program lists many suggestions for improvement for the user.

The Comprehensibility Of Customer Communication Is Measurable

But what does the intelligibility of texts mean? How can this be measured? Are there any critical figures for language? Communication science has been dealing with such questions for a long time. And specialists have found answers. Many specific criteria can be used to measure the comprehensibility of texts objectively. They start with technical terms that need to be explained to foreign words that should not be used if possible. Rules and standards for understandable language in customer communication can be derived from these criteria.

Equipped with an extensive catalog of such language rules, experts – or even software – can analyze texts for understandability. The evaluation then provides information on the quality and quality of the text based on scientific methods and findings. Companies and authorities can use the knowledge gained to better communicate with their customers.

The more parameters for the comprehensibility of texts are queried via the software, the more precisely it analyzes each text concerning its comprehensibility in fractions of a second. Regardless of whether it is a complicated specialist Chinese or annoying official: the program immediately shows the user where the respective text has weaknesses and suggests alternatives that are easier to understand.

Package Insert: Obligation To Use Understandable Language

Linguistic comprehensibility is often even specified as a guideline. As early as 2005, for example, pharmaceutical manufacturers were obliged by an EU directive to formulate the package inserts for medicines in a generally understandable manner. A considerable challenge for the specialists: From then on, they had to develop complicated medical facts to be understandable for all patients, even without twelve semesters of medical studies.

A few years later, the financial crisis in 2007 meant that banks, insurance companies, and health insurers were suddenly forced to rethink their thinking: To survive, they had to reposition themselves and fill the catchphrase of the “customer who is the focus” with life. Since then, more and more companies have recognized: The key to success lies in successful customer communication based on comprehensibility, the right tone, and brand loyalty.

Trust, appreciation and a good reputation – all intangible values ​​that positively impact the brand are primarily conveyed through language. Because language is the virtual interface companies have with customers: it takes place wherever customers and companies meet – at the counter, on the homepage, in the mail, in the letter, on the phone. The individual language style works like a company logo and should therefore be just as distinctive and unchangeable.

Development Of Your Corporate Language

This individual corporate language of a company can be integrated into the language analysis software. In this way, she can guarantee customer communication that is fully tailored to the brand at the push of a button. The advantage of such software is that the correct terms and phrases are used uniformly everywhere – including creative suggestions for improvement for the user. The software transfers the linguistic quality of texts into clear graphics, and, for the first time, “controlling the language” is possible using accurate vital figures.

Many companies are currently concerned with the topic of gender-appropriate language and how they would like to deal with this topic in their customer communication in the future. Suitable software must also be able to cover this requirement. There are currently more than 45,000 terms in the German language for which gender spelling is possible. The different variants for individual handling should be stored in the software. Companies can then choose which of the versions to apply.

Critically Examine Customer Communication

Companies and authorities that want to sharpen their profile in terms of customer proximity and strengthen customer confidence in the brand should critically examine their customer communication. Do we express ourselves everywhere in an understandable, clear, and friendly manner? Are we consistently conveying our brand values ​​in language? Have we chosen the right tone and closeness? Innovative software such as TextLab can help analyze and optimize even complicated and complex contents of letters, emails, or other texts for their comprehensibility. Such software can also be expanded to include the company’s tone of voice. This ensures brand-loyal communication at all touchpoints. 

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