Brand Evangelists Come From An Omni Channel Customer Experience
In this always on, shop and seek help 24/7 economy, whoever has the best customer experience wins.
Unfortunately, too many organizations still manage their customer experience in silos, with customer data scattered across the enterprise. This leads to inconsistent and unsatisfying customer interactions in an omni channel world while customer retention goes out the window.
For companies, omni channel means sharing data across borders among different departments. From the customers’ view, they don’t care about your internal borders.
Aberdeen research, the Customer Experience Management: Using the Power of Analytics to Optimize Customer Delight study that showed that 58% of companies were using at least four channels in 2012.
With an update released in 2017, 51% of the 422 companies surveyed now use at least eight channels to interact with customers.
But just adding more channels is not the right strategy. Companies must engage customers in their preferred channels to interact with the business.
Best-in-Class organizations knock down these silos internally, integrating data from the contact center, marketing, sales, and any other department that interacts with customers. This allows these companies to efficiently share insights and improve everything from product development to customer support.
Even as they expand channels, companies still struggle to develop and use a cohesive singular view of view of customer insights. When a company captures web visitation data, that’s stored in a marketing automation system. Insights gained from social listening tools are stored in a separate system. Data from sales interactions might be housed in the CRM system, contact center agents store their notes in an agent desktop. It’s no wonder even loyal customers get frustrated at dealing with the disconnection among the silos.
According to Forrester Research Inc. the top five channels consumers have used to interact with companies are:
Phone (73 percent)
Email (58 percent)
Instant message/online chat (43 percent)
Text message (24 percent)
Twitter (22 percent)
A company that uses more than one of the channels can be considered to offer multi-channel customer service. But it takes interacting in an integrated way to offer true omni channel service.
The difference is, multi-channel customer service gives customers choices while omni channel customer service offers true flexibility. That means omni channel service allows customers the free to choose which channel is best for them, and also the ability to switch from one channel to another while maintaining the quality of the experience.
An omni channel customer experience provides context for the agent and customer, using intelligent contact center solutions. This application provides a holistic view of the customer’s interaction across channels. The agent can see their transaction history, past problems, recent channel interactions and other insights. This level of detail allows an agent to provide personalized, and even preventive, service.