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CCW Disruptive Technology Report: Live Chat

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Chapter 4

Disruption Goal #1 - Personalization

Adages like “treat your customers as people, not numbers” and “view customers as one in a million, not one of a million” underscore the importance of personalizing the customer experience. Many brands support products; great ones connect with people.

The concept is not falling on deaf ears. Per recent CCW Digital research, customer contact leaders identify personalization as the #1 sign of a customer-centric experience. Consumers share in this philosophy, condemning “needing to repeat information” as a top source of frustration. They expect organizations to recognize and value them as individual people.

CCW DTR
CCW DTR

The broad reverence for the concept is not, however, translating into universal action. Many organizations are incapable of delivering a personalized experience, and the inadequacy is evident to customers:

More than 40% of organizations say agents rarely have the data to recognize customers when they transfer from other channels; customers, in turn, have to repeat themselves.

Fewer than 10% of organizations use journey maps to home in specific customer intent, sentiment or profiles.

Only 20% of customers feel as if agents know them during interactions

Coaching agents to make "connections" represents the #4 contact center priority for 2019.

Personalization Is Essential To The Chat Experience

In order to leverage chat as a full-service contact channel, organizations require robust, actionable customer insights. This caliber of intelligence empowers organizations to tailor chat conversations to specific customer needs, reducing effort while increasing the sense of personalization. Whether the customer is looking to check a balance, renew a subscription or engage in a lengthy dispute, the organization and its employees will be able to communicate more efficiently and resonantly.

Personal insights also empower organizations to create a more valuable overall chat journey. With a sense of specific customer intentions and emotions, the organization can more accurately identify opportunities for upsells as well as situations that necessitate supervisor assistance.

As customers become confident chat can accommodate their specific needs, they become more comfortable using the channel for their customer experience issues. They also gain a better sense of the brand’s overall commitment to their satisfaction.

Disruptive Chat Platforms Empower Personalization

Leading chat platforms do not simply accommodate personal communication; they empower it.

Capable of segmenting customers by factors like geography, language preference, interaction history, shopping cart status, issue context and lifetime value, these platforms facilitate more accurate and customer-centric routing. Organizations can even fast-track customers with VIP status or urgent inquiries, ensuring they receive help befitting their circumstances.

Personalization does not cease once the customer lands at the proper destination. Through robust
CRM integration, the chat engagement tool provides seamless access to data about each customer. With insight into purchase history, recent support inquiries, account temperature and account preferences at their immediate disposal, agents and bots can deliver a faster and more valuable experience.

"Your agents will need quick access to relevantcustomer history," notes Kevin Gao. "Quick implies on the fly — until you can accurately predict when a customer will call, you'll need to be more reactive than proactive. You must avoid the need for the agent to go hunting, especially under pressure of providing a response."

Kevin Gao
Co-Founder, Comm100 Network Corporation

"Good customer service means more than just answering questions; it's become more about the relationship between your business and the customer," explains Tim Grooms. "Your customer satisfaction score is directly tied to how well you're building those relationships. Live chat is an effective tool to bridge that gap."

Tim Grooms
Director of Marketing, Xylem Analytics

By determining when a bot is ideal or insufficient for a particular interaction, artificial intelligence is adding a new degree of personalization to the chat experience.

"With the right training and the right integrations, bots can handle 50% or more of all inbound queries," adds Gao. "When equipped with appropriate escalation protocols — for instance knowing when they can't help or giving human agents the ability to monitor and take over chats — chatbots can easily handle first contact with confidence".

Kevin Gao
Co-Founder, Comm100 Network Corporation

The capability for real-time translation makes chat conversations, whether involving bots or live agents, even more accommodating of individual customer needs.

Bidirectional when it comes to customer data, great chat platforms also collect insights that can enhance interactions in the short-term and optimize omnichannel journeys in the long run. Bots, as an example, can pass conversational and web form data to agents to facilitate a better handover process. Organizations can also leverage chat data to populate their CRM solutions, revamp their knowledge bases and better understand the voice of the customer to improve future interactions.

"[By analyzing interactions], we know how they're consuming our products, we know what their lifetime value is, we know everything about them," declares Kelley Kurtzman, who says the next step is to "take that information, feed it into some of the tools, and get those insights out to our channels."

Kelley Kurtzman
Vice President - Global Consumer Sales & Service Centers , Verizon