The way you talk to customers has a substantial impact on your brand, and nothing delivers customer satisfaction quite like excellent communication. Current technology in the field of social messaging automation offers companies a change to step up their game. “Conversational excellence” is the magic word and is all about responding to the popularity of social messaging. It helps to turn your customer service department into an engine for growth; a cost center becomes a profit center.
But before we dive into the wonders of this hybrid approach, we have to look at the world of social messaging first.
Be where your customer is
For the past few years, the number of social messaging users has been growing nonstop. At this point, there are over 9.1 million WhatsApp users in The Netherlands and a whopping 1.5 billion worldwide. And that’s just WhatsApp: the amount of WeChat, Facebook Messenger, Viber and other messaging channel users is growing rapidly as well.
People’s expectations for communicating with each other are fundamentally transforming the way they expect to communicate with companies. Messaging platforms were originally created as peer-to-peer communication channels, but businesses are now in the footsteps of using messaging to engage customers and prospects.
While consumers are becoming more active on social messaging platforms, a recent CCW Digital survey shows that companies still prefer traditional channels like email, text, social media, live chat and telephony.
Skipping social messaging as a business, means missing out on real opportunities:
Customers are becoming somewhat ‘immune’ to traditional messaging and want to interact with your business on their terms: whether that’s on Telegram, Line, Kakao Talk or Twitter. It’s all a matter of speed, familiarity, convenience and industry forces.
And we are not just talking locally. Across eight markets surveyed globally, 80% of adults say they use messaging apps on a daily basis.
Providing excellent customer service means knowing just what to say at the right time. A good conversation transforms into an amazing one, thanks to the pleasantness of the experience. As a result, customer engagement shifts from a reactive one-time exercise to a continuous conversation. When a business remains continuously engaged with their customers, they become a trusted advisor and guide. A go-to friend for advice on products and the latest trends..
When customer communication thrives, service agents are empowered and customers feel more satisfied than ever. The responsibility customer service is to keep customers happy, so employees should feel happy about their job in the first place. With the right tools and setup, your customer service agents will be motivated to work harder and enjoy greater freedom to focus on their core service mission. What’s not to love?
When we refer to conversational excellence, we are describing a change in the way customer service comes about. With the help of new technologies like machine learning, artificial intelligence and bots, business can become better listeners and expert communicators. By embracing this change, they create a situation where the boundaries between questions, sales and marketing melt.
Conversational excellence is not made of thin air: it’s a proven process for the present and the future. Today’s customer expects 24/7 accessibility through channels and devices of their choice. Bots are getting smarter and better. The playing field of customers service is changing, and so should cost centers and priorities. It’s time for a transformation on company level.
Conversational excellence is no utopia: it’s a state where channels, automation, marketing and personalization all work in unity, and create sales-generating interactions as a result.
Let’s walk through the four stages of this transformation within a fictional business:
1. One-to-one conversations
The customer service department is still a cost center at this point. Customer service agents are unable to control the high amount of inbound traffic. Customer satisfaction scores are low, and employees feel overwhelmed and dissatisfied with their work. The marketing department is experiencing similar challenges in trying to reach their target audience.
2. One-to-many conversations
The company starts exploring new ways to interact with their customers by leveraging omnichannel strategies. Customer service channels are approached as touchpoints, rather than broadcasting points. While the use of traditional channels declines, incoming volumes are increasing due to the use of social messaging.
3. Intelligent one-to-many communication
The company starts adopting social messaging channels such as WhatsApp, Facebook Messenger and WeChat to meet customer expectations as these channels emerge as preferred channels. New technologies enable companies to leverage social messaging for automated reactions and routing questions to the right department.
4. Conversational excellence
The company adopts the vision and magic of conversational excellence. Customer service departments can handle peak volumes with ease. They build more natural and intimate relationships with customers, leading to a greater direct sales impact and lower costs as departmental silos break down: marketing, messaging and customer service merge into one. By interpreting behavioral and real-time data, the company gains a better understanding of the customer’s voice. With the help of sentiment analysis, hyper-personalized conversations become the standard.
When the customer conversation becomes a continuous and a primary process, boundaries of departments blur—leading to a higher return on investment and higher customer satisfaction. Consumers, especially modern ones, are fickle. But when you win their hearts, you win their loyalty.
In today’s world, companies are challenged to rethink the way they engage with their customers. With SaySimple on your side, you can appeal to the always-on, multiple gadget customer in search of perfection. We can help elevate your customer service department to unparalleled heights; simply reach out for a platform demonstration or made-to-measure advise.