Customers want to be self-reliant and have the capability to help themselves via digital channels. However, there is still a need for real human interaction despite wanting the convenience of self-managed channels. In his recent article, Martin Hill-Wilson says that the best way to have both of these customer service capabilities is by offering omni-channel customer service. Hill-Wilson discusses how to design an effective omni-channel experience, the concept of digital profiling, and how to understand the customer journey and channel characteristics.
Build a Digital Profile
When it comes to designing an effective omni-channel customer experience, the goal to keep in mind is providing customer engagement in any situation. Hill-Wilson says that the main keys to consider include how much digital interaction the customers will want, the challenges this will create for the customer, and the strengths and weaknesses of your digital platforms. In order to get the ball rolling in the right direction, you must first establish a digital profile of your customers to fully understand how quickly they adopt digital behavior and how well set up your digital channels are to meet expectations.
The first step in building a digital profile can be created by using existing research (which has created by using numerous resources) to develop a base level of insights about your customers. The second step in building a digital profile is to research your customers by asking them questions directly via surveys, focus groups, and other methods. Between these two steps, you should be able to determine who your customers are and how you can organize them into various degrees of digital savvy.
Understand the Customer Journey
Instead of trying to force specific types of customer service down your customers’ throats because you want to reduce costs, it’s best to learn what the customer wants from you and adjust accordingly. By researching what influences a customer’s choice of communication channel, you can make your omni-channel experience intuitive to their needs and ultimately provide a more effective and helpful customer experience. Communication needs are highly based on a customer’s current situation. Sometimes they’ll prefer to seek help by calling somebody in person, while other times it might be more convenient to do things themselves online. Make sure you have the most updated information on your customers and their potential journeys and you’ll be able to provide them a better service.
Understand Channel Characteristics
Hill-Wilson states that the three types of communication channels are video, voice, and text. The goal should be to make sure you’re using their strengths while reducing their weaknesses. Video is often used primarily in the cases of high value services like counseling, escalations, and VIP service. Voice channels are used when customers need to connect on an emotional level with a customer service representative in situations like filing a complaint or requesting a resolution on an issue. Finally, text is used for more simple information such as how-to instructions and information on how to move from self-service to live agent assistance.
This blog post was based on a CustomerThink article. To read the original article, please click the link below:
How To Balance Digital and Human Customer Support – Martin Hill-Wilson
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