Life during a pandemic taught many lessons, among them that each moment is precious. Many of those moments are spent interacting with the people who are important to us, connecting with other humans like the social animals that we are.
But there’s no shortage of disruptions, so the go-to interaction style of choice is digital. A chat, email, or social media post lets you communicate on your terms — on your preferred channels, at your convenience. Conversations are broken into micro-engagements that allow you to begin a discussion before making breakfast, continue while waiting for your child to get out of school, and finish before bed that night. We’re typically having several “conversations” simultaneously every day, and this is normal.
Imagine trying to conduct every digital conversation you’re having right now with your voice. Ridiculous, right? Couldn’t do it. But that’s what many customer service teams continue attempting while thinking about digital channels as add-ons.
Human contact has fundamentally changed in the last 20 years, but most contact center systems are still catching up. They’re built around the synchronous nature of live conversation with digital engagement thrown in as an accessory. This puts your customer experience at risk.
Deliver proactive care with a human touch
It’s time to acknowledge that asynchronous digital conversations are the norm, and that means designing technology from the ground up to enable digital contact first. This means:
Harnessing the human ability to handle multiple interactions at the same time with customers who are less used to resolving their issues over the phone.
Deploying artificial intelligence to handle routine queries at scale so you can save agent time for when a human touch is required.
Listening to what people are saying about you and proactively intervening when the conversation has implications to your brand.
For many of your customers, the phone is now the final point of escalation, if they use it at all. Consider this: Gen Y and Gen Z now represent almost half of all consumer transactions, and this demographic vastly prefers modern channels like web chat and social media. In fact, less than 12% of them say the phone is their preferred channel.
When a customer reaches the point where they’re forced to call you on the phone to resolve their issue, it might be already too late to save that relationship. Even worse, it’s likely you’ve missed an opportunity to engage the customer proactively on their preferred channels, before anger and frustration. Now your poor agents are in crisis management mode playing defense.
Your ability to impress your customers in a digital world depends on your ability to talk to them on their terms, not yours. But that’s good news for you if you’re tasked with providing excellent customer service. You’re now free to reduce your reliance on a costly telephony infrastructure, which has less business value than ever before. One agent covering digital channels can handle the caseload of five agents handling the phones, and the level of satisfaction your customers feel is higher when you allow them to talk to you asynchronously amidst the messiness of human life and all its interruptions.
Check out what today’s contact center platform looks like when reimagined from the digital perspective. You’ll find that it’s fundamentally different from typical Contact Center as a Service (CCaaS) solutions on the market today. That’s because technology has given today’s human more choices than ever before about when and where they engage with your brand.
Let people interact with you their way. They’ll love you for it.