Appliances, consumer electronic makers assist customers virtually amid lockdown

Appliances and consumer electronics makers are using social media platforms and other online tools to reach their customers, who are facing problems with products amid the lockdown. Companies like Sony, Samsung, Panasonic, Haier and Godrej Appliance are leveraging Livechat, WhatsApp, DIY video as well as on-call assistance, and helping remotely on real time basis as their service centres are closed in compliance with the government directives.

Besides, some firms such as Haier has also extended the warranty on products across all categories by two months after the lockdown is lifted.

“As the entire market is closed, we are educating our consumers through videos and in case if any service intervention is required, then we have a chat facility. We are also trying to do WhatApp calls (Video), in which both sides can see what is happening and help the customers, in some minor changes, which they can do themselves,” Godrej Appliances Business Head and EVP Kamal Nandi told .

As the summer is knocking and use of air-condition is going to start soon, the manufacturers are helping the customer with DIY video (Do it yourself) to clean their machines themselves.

“Summer is here and AC will require servicing soon. We have developed a DIY video helping people to clean their machines themselves,” said a Panasonic India spokesperson, adding that it is “calling all registered customers and sharing the mobile numbers of our local staff for support, if required.

The company is also active on social media, where its consumers can tag it and share their issue.

The appliance and consumer electronic manufacturers have already suspended manufacturing operations at their plant in compliance with the government directives to prevent Covid-19 pandemic.

Sony India, which has suspended its call centre support, is requesting customers through IVR message to visit the support page on its web site for self-help and fill the service request web forms for the company to contact them.

“Depending on the nature of the issue reported by a customer, the team is providing self-help tips/steps, self-help video links and if needed seeking consent with the customer to call back and extend resolution over phone as well.

“Customers visiting our support page can also do Live Chat with our customer care representative to resolve any queries on real time basis. In addition to this, our support page has standard FAQ’s in place to assist customers resolve their issues,” Sony India Spokesperson said.

While Samsung India, which has also shut down operations of its service centres and customer call centres, is asking its customers to reach it through live chat.

“We urge our customers to use our Live Chat facility to reach out to us with any queries on their products,” said a Samsung India spokesperson.

Haier is also remotely helping its customers with their service queries through multiple channels — which includes WhatsApp, Live chat along with its Careline on toll-free numbers.

“In these times of uncertainty, we at Haier are taking all necessary steps to provide unrestricted services to our customers. From operating our call centers with the active support of our service engineers to extend the warranty on Haier products across all categories, we want to ensure that our customers are provided with the best service experience at all times,” Haier Appliances India President Eric Braganza said.

The number of COVID-19 cases climbed to 979 in India on Sunday with the death toll rising to 25, according to the Union Health Ministry.

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