While it may seem that sales, PR, customer service, social media, and marketing are all distinct entities with their own goals, the truth is all of them share a common purpose: to actively shape customers’ perceptions of a company’s brand. A good international brand tells a powerful, personal story to customers all around the world – and for this reason, all external communication teams can benefit greatly from targeted corporate language learning programs.
Babbel for Business specializes in offering language learning programs that are scientifically proven to enhance language skills and offers services like Babbel Live, with fast, goal-oriented group lessons that are a perfect fit for fast-paced corporate environments. To understand the benefits these services can offer forward-thinking companies, it’s worth examining how language learning can support and boost the effectiveness of each external communication team.
Using language learning to boost customer service
After customers buy a product or service, any additional assistance they need is likely to come directly from customer service representatives. While some companies may try to cut costs in this area, they do so at their own risk. Research from Bain and Company has shown that companies who prioritize customer service tend to outperform their competitors by four to eight percent in revenue per year.
Like other parts of external communication, customer service depends on using empathy and understanding to solve customers’ problems. As business becomes increasingly international, more and more customers will speak different languages. To be able to address those customers fluently and efficiently, customer service departments will need to keep up.
Bilingual PR professionals can outperform their competition
While customer services reps need to understand and resolve their customers’ problems, PR professionals need to take those customer service success stories and spread that message to the rest of the world. As companies look to expand their customer base, they are likely to look to new markets, and PR professionals can help here by engaging with local media in those markets and “speaking their language” in every sense. Language learning is invaluable here for the necessary business communication skills to acquire new customers across the globe.
Language learning helps sales teams overcome cultural barriers
In his seminal book When Cultures Collide, British linguist Richard D. Lewis examined how business and social organization differed in countries around the world and how this could lead to miscommunications during sales and negotiation processes. Unspoken cultural codes are often baked into the language we use in all business communications.
As the world becomes more globalized, language learning is becoming increasingly important for sales teams – and to be as effective as possible, it helps to speak the same language as the people you’re selling to. As an added bonus, language learning can help teach external communication teams the specific cultural nuances and sensitivities that are difficult to learn any other way.
Multilingual communication in social media, marketing, and advertising
Social media teams are crucial to engaging and retaining customers and spreading brand awareness organically. While companies organize these responsibilities differently depending on their scale, social media is often just one aspect of a company’s marketing and advertising, which can encompass print, visual media, and digital communications. Yet, social media teams are very important in external communication because they bring a company’s entire sales strategy together.
In our current age of digital communication, companies who express themselves well in public customer interactions on social media can create a highly-visible and engaging brand. To be effective, this process of brand-building relies on wit, humor, and nuance. In other words, it’s not enough to paste social posts into Google Translate and expect them to resonate. The savviest companies learn the language and culture of each of their markets, so they can connect with each audience and present themselves with confidence wherever they appear.
Language learning helps external communication teams prepare for the future
While all great companies need excellent internal organization and great products and services, communicating that value to the outside world is paramount. External communication teams accomplish this by shaping unique brands and narratives and sharing them widely. As globalization continues to shape the business world, these teams face more challenges than ever before, and great companies must invest in them to ensure their success. Babbel for Business’s flexible and proven language learning programs offer a great way to prepare these teams and companies of all sorts for the world of tomorrow.
Interested in improving your customer communication with language learning? Check out our new handbook for customer service teams.