Latinos in the United States have more than $1 trillion in annual buying power, according to the Selig Center for Economic Growth at the University of Georgia’s Terry College of Business. According to the data, the U.S. Hispanic market is larger than the economies of all but 13 countries in the world. If your company isn’t nurturing your relationships with Hispanic customers, you’re likely leaving quite a bit of money on the table.
English is Not a Universal Language
35.8 million Hispanics speak Spanish at home, and 75 percent of those households consider Spanish their first language. These numbers have been steadily increasing as the Latino population of the US continues to grow. So what happens when a member of this population with massive buying power calls your customer service line?
If you do not have an option for Spanish-speakers, you are essentially telling those callers that you do not value their business. If the customer has an important need, they may ask a child or a friend to translate or place the call for them. But that means calling on someone else’s time and risking poor relay of the problem or the solution. What are the odds of retaining a customer who cannot simply pick up the phone and place a call to customer service on his or her own timeframe, speak to someone directly and get answers or solutions?
Bilingual Agents Are a Must in 2016
While the highest concentrations of Latinos can still be found in the Southwestern United States, the fact is, Spanish-speakers live in all 50 states. Even if you think you do not have a big enough Latino customer base to justify Spanish calling options, you should still have bilingual agents on staff.
Not only can these agents handle customer requests and concerns resourcefully, but research also shows that bilingual people are more efficient at making linguistic and visual connections, possibly because of the mental acuity needed to balance two languages. If your bilingual CSRs only field a few Spanish calls a week, you’ll still reap the benefits of employees whose brains work faster and who are more efficient than the average person.
If you are ready to develop a bilingual call center program, or if you have a program in place but you’re looking for the best and brightest customer service agents, the recruiters at CSS are ready to help. As a market leader in customer service call center recruitment, we understand the value of strong bilingual CSRs. We have a deep pool of talent who are ready to tackle new challenges. Contact us today to learn more about the ways in which you can win the loyalty of the Hispanic market by focusing on customer service.