4 Tips to Optimize Digital Engagement for Customer Success
Article by: Dennis Picht, PolSource VP Global Practices
As a customer service executive, you know the advantage of creating frictionless experiences for your customers. You also understand the challenges of keeping up with technology and ever evolving channels. Most likely, you are battling challenges to improve agent efficiencies and reduce training time – all while doing everything possible to provide a great customer experience. Still, you understand the need to expand into new digital channels. So how can you optimize digital engagement to ensure customer success?
Here are four main areas to focus on to optimize digital engagement for customer success:
1) Bots – most people understand the value bots can provide, yet few have ventured into the implementation. Bots are one of the easiest ways to deflect calls, while improving the customer experience. Meanwhile, should an agent interaction need to take place, you can better route the problem to the correct agent. A few tips for your bot implementation:
- Start Small – choose the easiest deflection scenario, whether that’s a basic Contact Us bot to gather info (free starter bot) or a simple deflection. A recent PolSource customer was unable to process returns and exchanges through chat, so the first iteration of their bot was directing these issues to the proper knowledge and channels. Remember, when choosing a digital channel, most of your customers want to avoid direct human engagement whenever possible, so even a simple bot will improve their satisfaction.
- Make your bot friendly – there is no need to hide the fact that your bot is not a real person (some states even require you to disclose this). So, have fun with it! Come up with a catchy name for the bot; many customers even employ a name the bot competition. Let the bot reflect your company culture in the way it interacts with your customers.
- Acknowledge when you are switching channels – again, keep it casual with something like “unfortunately I can’t seem to help you, let me transfer you to one of our agents to further assist”.
2) Digital Channels – customers expect to engage with you on their terms. For many, that means engagement through a cell phone in some way. It’s important to understand regional preferences as well. One advantage you have is a seamless experience for your agents, where they can respond to any of the asynchronous channels flawlessly – as if they are the same. A few tips for your digital channels:
- Make them as easy to access as possible. Things like Apple Business Chat or in-app messaging can make it easier for your customers to contact you from wherever they are.
- Understand digital messaging is fundamentally different than live chat. Your customers know that responses aren’t necessarily as immediate.
- Combine with your bot! A single bot should extend easily to any of these channels. Deploying the bot across the channels will benefit you through deflection, as well as your customers.
- Whenever possible, try and keep customers on the channel they chose. If you can’t answer a specific topic through a channel, do everything you can to help the contact through that channel. When it is necessary to transfer channels, make it as seamless as possible. This could mean the agent pro-actively calling and switching channels. Nothing is more frustrating than telling someone to call, providing a number, and then forcing them to start the process all over again.
3) In App Support – Its amazing how often this is ignored, and the support button in a mobile app links out to the support website, often with no authentication passed. If a customer is having a problem in your app, they want to get support in the app. This includes knowledge articles and ways to contact you. Preferably, there is an in-app messaging option that will push notifications when agents respond.
4) Be Proactive – when you know of a problem, use these digital channels to proactively communicate with your customers. A real-life example is when a credit card was compromised in an app delivery service. The company stopped allowing use of the credit card, but never reached out to the customer, nor refund any of the fraudulent purchases. When a resolution interaction clearly needs to take place, delaying it until the customer reaches out is only going to frustrate them more. However, simply sending a pro-active message through the app with the problem and ways to resolve it, would most likely keep a long time customer loyal.
Even in an AI-led world, the old adage that the customer is always right still rings true. Utilizing digital optimization in the right ways can only improve your customers’ experience, and ultimately, your company’s success.
Want more tips on strategy or implementation of these processes? Contact us today!