Automation is a word most of us equate to convenience. To a person at home, it might mean sitting in bed with a remote control that handles your home theatre, windows, garage, microwave or washing machine at the touch of a button. To a shopper, it might mean clicking through a menu of items before you order and having them delivered to your doorstep. And to a business owner, it might mean dispensing tons of auto replies to potential customers with one hit of the “send” button.

Cyborg Service

With all this automation at your disposal, it’s possible to lose the human touch in the digital age. Marketing and customer service may have become quick and easy nowadays with all the strategies and methods the new advances have brought us, but don’t let these automated tools fool you.

They’re Real, and So Are You

The face of marketing and customer service may have changed dramatically during the past decade, but some things remain consistent—such as the heart of the consumer. Real people are still the end users, not programs or bots. It’s all about the customer: her wants, her needs, her preferences. That’s why effective marketing requires human touch. We are wired to crave relationships: real connections with fellow human beings. But so far, there isn’t an intelligent, automated tool that’s been invented to provide all the flexibility, sincerity, warmth and genuine care consumers relate to.

Wouldn’t you always prefer to have a real, live, sincere person responding to you at the end of the line, providing unique responses to your unique issues – rather than a machine?

Although market analysis and consumer trend studies are valuable tools in achieving growth and success, customers don’t want to be treated like mere statistics and demographics. Be sincere and avoid the hype.

In Thumbtack’s short experience, we have learned time and time again that a quick call to check on the jobs we see on our site always generates positive responses. Almost every person we contact is pleasantly surprised that we go all the way to make sure their needs are met. This stems from our belief that although we do business in the digital world, automation should never make marketing cold and impersonal.

We use the tools the digital age has endowed us with to provide each customer not just a quick response, but a reply made by a real, caring person. Whether by email, phone or SMS; on a busy Wednesday afternoon or in the wee hours of a Sunday morning, our message rings true: WE CARE. This is what creates a positive impact to customers’ hearts and minds. This is also the core value that will allow businesses to evolve in the digital age.

It’s a Win-Win Situation

The idea of building a business that profits every customer is what drives this human touch. You might be doing business online – but are you throwing your heart into it? A smile begets a smile; people respond to people. Good marketing and customer service is always an excellent investment.

Consider this quote from Arthur F. Sheldon: “He profits most who serves best.” Try it and prove for yourself that this brand of humanness in marketing creates lasting relationships that give birth to word-of-mouth advertising: both foundations for a thriving business.

The benefits of technology weren’t meant to drive us humans apart but to bring us closer.