Thanks to our hyper-connected digital world, brands today must put their smartest, most charming selves forward in order to create memorable connections, and offer unique solutions for customers. From instant resolutions to intelligent and personalized service at their fingertips, the modern consumer demands far more from their favored brand in exchange for their loyalty. As a result, businesses are stepping up their communication game –not just by being available anytime and anywhere, but also by going the extra mile to make their customers’ day.

For many of us, dealing with customer service teams can be a nightmare, but, from a brand’s point of view—it’s critical to turn that prospective nightmare into a positive experience. Not only can a single bad experience translate into a loss of a customer, but a negative reputation also dissuades prospective customers from making purchases.

Consider the case of Delhi-based corporate lawyer Krisshna Sarswat. About three months ago, when the infuriated 26-year-old tried to lodge a complaint on food-ordering app Zomato, he had no inkling of what lay in store.

“I was very hungry, and my order was taking longer than usual to get delivered. The customer care ‘bot’, however, responded very sweetly and even flirted with me. When I said, ‘I want to break up’, it said, ‘Nooo, I can’t lose you’,” laughs Krisshna.

The chat went viral on social media, and Krisshna even ended up getting Rs. 400 credited to his Zomato Wallet. “Even today, the incident puts a wide grin on my face,” he adds.

More often than not, customer service essentially boils down to individuals—that one person on duty—whose training, initiative, and presence of mind, can either make or break the customers’ day.

A pinch of humor

Handling a disgruntled consumer with humorous, witty replies is a trend, catching on quickly among many brands. A few years ago, an online conversation between a representative of e-commerce major Amazon and a customer, had all Marvel fans in splits. While looking into a book order that had somehow got messed up, the executive, apparently called ‘Thor’, role-played with the buyer who named himself ‘Odin’.

“Thor, my son. Agony raises upon my life,” the customer wrote.

Responding to this, ‘Thor’ wrote, “This is outrageous! Who dares defy The All Father Odin! What has occurred to cause this agony?”

Another time, an employee of British travel application, Skyscanner, became an internet celebrity after she responded to a glitch pointed out on the website by a consumer.

“Just wondering what you’d recommend I do during the 47-year layover your website has suggested?” James Llyod, the customer, wrote on Skyscanner’s Facebook page, after he noticed that the website suggested that he take a 4,13,786-hour and 25-minute layover at Bangkok’s Suvarnabhumi Airport on a trip from New Zealand to London.

That’s when Jen, the company’s social media manager, stepped in. She not only offered to look into the mistake, but also offered a few suggestions as to how James could spend all those ‘years’.

“Unless you’re a huge fan of The Terminal, I’d probably recommend spending those years outside the airport, so here are a few suggestions…..a cruise on the Chao Phraya river, become a Tai Chi expert….,” wrote Jen.

The longest call ever

If you want to learn something incredibly inspiring, hear this: on June 11, 2016, Steven Weinstein, a call-centre employee at the online shoe and apparel brand, Zappos, undertook a customer-service call that lasted a whole 10 hours, 43 minutes. The customer initially called to enquire about a few products but ended up talking to Weinstein for several hours after.

Based out of the company headquarters in Las Vegas, Weinstein reportedly took only one break during the 11-hour period, while his colleagues got him snacks and water when required. His call broke the previous record set in a similar situation – by Amazon representative Mary Tennant in 2012 (her call lasted 9 hours, 37 minutes).  Weinstein admitted that he didn't stay on the line for so long "just for the sake of breaking" the record — he simply wanted to impress his customer.

Something that all brands and customer care executives can learn from the executive at Zappos is the importance of putting customers before everything else, be it for a crucial and complicated query or a simple chat.

Customer service has come a long way since the days of waiting endlessly on hold in a call center.  Today’s brands know the value each and every customer brings to the business and are working to build customer experiences that go above and beyond to be more efficient, more intelligent and tailored to each individual.  Technology is playing a huge role in this transformation.   There are more engagement channels than ever before with live chat, social media, mobile and even artificial intelligence becoming cornerstones of how customers communicate.  The key for brands is to not only support these channels, but do so seamlessly so that customers can move from channel to channel – with context – allowing service teams to have a 360-degree view of the customer’s journey so they can best help them.  

That’s where Bold360 by LogMeIn comes in.  Working to revolutionize digital customer service, the Bold360 family combines popular engagement channels, support tools, a unified interface and next-generation artificial intelligence to bridge the gap between customer and vital business information, helping companies deliver the immediate and personalized results consumers – like those mentioned above -- expect.  By delivering fast and frictionless engagement, Bold360 not only increases productivity for businesses, but also empowers agents to find new ways of servicing clients; in turn, helping them create funny, endearing, and memorable connections with their customers.

Discover smarter, more personalized engagement with your customers with Bold360. It gives your business a complete view of all customers in real time, so you can deliver exceptional experiences across any channel or device.

 

Customers today are both empowered and well-informed, often even more than the brand’s service agents. They’re also demanding and far less patient that the generation before. With rapidly changing behaviour and engagement patterns across the globe, how can brands continue to stay relevant? This infographic outlines key trends impacting digital customer engagement and what companies can do to keep up.

 

Discover smarter, more personalized engagement with your customers with Bold360. It gives your business a complete view of all customers in real time, so you can deliver exceptional experiences across any channel or device.

Today’s digitally savvy consumer expects to be on a first name basis with your business. Sure, you can rely on your CRM system, but that only provides a partial view of your customers. Your agents need an up close and personal view of your customers to truly engage with them; they need a 360-degree view. See what real intelligent customer engagement looks like with Bold360.

 

Discover smarter, more personalized engagement with your customers with Bold360. It gives your business a complete view of all customers in real time, so you can deliver exceptional experiences across any channel or device.

Online customers have high expectations when it comes to service and you only have one chance to get it right. Ensuring your company is ready to engage and support your online customers is critical if you hope to earn their loyalty, advocacy, and wallet share.

Forrester estimates that U.S. ecommerce sales will reach $523 billion by 2020, accounting for nearly 14% of retailers’ annual sales revenue. And nearly more than half of those purchases will happen via mobile devices.

But make no mistake: online customers have high expectations when it comes to service, and you only have one chance to get it right. 

This eBook outlines 5 tips for taking your customer engagement strategy to the next level, to help you delight your customers and boost your bottom line.

Discover smarter, more personalized engagement with your customers with Bold360. It gives your business a complete view of all customers in real time, so you can deliver exceptional experiences across any channel or device.

In today’s world, customers want to be able to interact with a company in a way that parallels their other communications. They want to text, they want to message and, if they have to pick up the phone, they want their history with the company to be immediately available to the agent. The article explains the paradigm shift in customer engagement and how companies around the world are harnessing digital tools and technology to know and serve their customers better.

You recently purchased a shirt that had a torn button. How do you intend to register a complaint? If you bought the product from a store, you would probably have to visit it again to return or exchange the shirt. If you got it online, you would know what to do – call up the company or shoot a mail to customer care stating your grievances.

Technology has revolutionized the way we communicate. Today, buyers are more informed and compare products online before making purchases. Businesses are being carried out on mobile phones, apps, websites, and social media. While both offline and online experiences go a long way in influencing consumer behaviour, trends indicate that technology has enabled companies to know their customers better and deliver on their needs. For instance, brands nowadays take to online forums to seek feedback from customers after or before launching a product. Ad wizard Roy H. Williams once famously said, “The first step in exceeding your customer’s expectations is to know those expectations.”

Brands are harnessing technology to gain such insights and build a sustainable relationship with their customers. Here is a look at what customer loyalty means in the digital age.

More informed choices

Most company websites furnish content that is interesting for consumers. The stories revolve around the products offered by the brand and other customer-relevant information so that people can make more informed purchases. For example, if you are planning to buy an Apple iPhone, you can visit the company’s website to learn about the various features of the product. Similarly, if you are planning to invest in a health insurance policy, expect to find various health-related stories on the respective company’s website. Without this accessibility, customers would have to depend on word-of-mouth recommendations to make purchases.

Quick redressal of complaints

With the technology boom, it is so much easier for customers to register their grievances with companies. Before lodging a complaint with the consumer court, people have the option to go vocal on social media platforms such as Twitter and Facebook. In most cases, companies take these comments seriously, as negative words can spoil the reputation of the brands. According to government data, e-commerce firms resolved grievances in 77% of cases. Many companies, such as Amazon, even contact their customers to gather feedback on the products purchased. Further, many company websites give consumers the option to review a product. A study conducted by AC Nielsen and AbsoluData states that nearly 40 million Indians use the product review feature to inform others about their purchase decisions.

Personalised experiences

Technology has enabled companies to create personalised experiences for customers at every point of interaction. For example, e-commerce majors such as Amazon, Myntra, and Jabong send personalised e-mails to their customers depending on their browsing history and recent purchases. So, if you recently bought a book by Danielle Steel from Amazon, expect e-mails suggesting books of similar genres or by the same author. Or, if you bought a pink skirt from Jabong, expect e-mails suggesting tops that you could teem it with.

Sample this: Purplle, an online company that offers beauty products in India, quizzes every first-time user to know their preferences and accordingly recommends products. Recently, Uber added two new features – ‘in-app chat’ and ‘multi-destination’ – to its app to enrich user experience. While the first service allows riders to provide information about their exact locations without incurring any charges, the other enables users to add multiple stops along their routes. Even social networking website Facebook displays only relevant updates on a user’s page.

A humane touch

Technology has done a commendable job in fostering emotional ties between companies and customers. For example, cab aggregator Uber Technologies Inc. has been making ad films inspired by real rider and driver-partners. The stories highlight how technology has empowered people in everyday situations and how riders conceive of Uber as a brand. Further, many e-commerce companies offer coupons, discounts, reward points, and free merchandise to customers who make frequent purchases from them. For example, Amazon launched its paid loyalty programme called ‘Prime’ that provides free and faster shipping, online video and music streaming, and cloud streaming, among others.

The way forward

The world over, a large number of companies like Apple, Microsoft, Skype, and Amazon are embracing the capabilities of artificial intelligence (AI) to engage with customers. AI is the ability of machines to perform functions that otherwise need human intelligence. AI tools such as chatbots, virtual personal assistants, and voice-activated apps offer more personalised experiences to users and ensure that they find what they are looking for. For example, shoppers can be told which shirt can be matched with a pair of trousers, or which car has the best mileage. AI also offers communication channels to consumers based on their age, such as a telephone call, email, social media, or chat. The idea is to save time by providing quick intelligent solutions to basic queries, cover up for a shortage of manpower to handle consumer complaints, and cut costs for companies.

Discover smarter, more personalized engagement with your customers with Bold360. It gives your business a complete view of all customers in real time, so you can deliver exceptional experiences across any channel or device.

This Fifth Quadrant infographic visualizes the direct impact of poor consumer experiences on loyalty and advocacy, current frustrations with customer service, and expectations for delivering personalized and seamless experience.

 

Online customers have high expectations when it comes to service and you only have one chance to get it right. Ensuring your company is ready to engage and support your online customers is critical if you hope to earn their loyalty, advocacy, and wallet share.

This eBook shares five tips to take your customer engagement strategy to the next level.

loading