Over the past 30 years, companies have experimented with various solutions to manage their relationships with their customers. The primary need has always been to provide the public with an efficient channel for solving problems or issues, while always maintaining high customer satisfaction.
The tools available to companies did not facilitate the customization of services offered to customers, as they lacked the capability or the technology to do so. The company-customer relationship was structured on three assets: employees, switchboard staff, and the complaints department. The greatest weakness of this organization was mainly that the client did not interact with specialized staff, and often waited in vain for a problem's solution.
The introduction of call centers brought on the first significant improvement: a call center collects requests to then direct them to the correct department which can solve them. Call processes are optimized, as well as human resources, according to maximum efficiency criteria.
But we are only at the beginning of the evolution process focused on communication between a company and its customers. Technological innovations will provide companies and consumers with ever more precise and efficient relationship and communication tools.
Voice and data were processed on separate systems for a significant amount of time, then converged into a single channel: the IP channel (Internet traffic) through the technology known as VoIP: Voice Over IP. This meant more efficiency, speed, and quality in data transmission, and made communication easier for all parties. The VoIP system affirmed multi-channel possibilities, integrating new data formats in the transmission of information: texts, audio, video, SMS, chat.
Multi-channel communication: a great transformation for companies
With multi-channel communications, customer interaction with the company takes place through the customer's preferred platform and any problems can be resolved in a more practical, rapid manner.
Multi-channel communication has allowed companies to benefit from many advantages, although it should be stressed that having more channels for managing customers goes hand in hand with greater complexity, a higher volume of activities to be organized and integrated into business processes, and possible conflicts between channels.
But focusing on the benefits that multi-channel communication has provided to companies, we can see that the opportunities for contacting customers have multiplied, as well as opportunities to do business. In addition, the message that the company needs to convey to the customer becomes more effective because it is transmitted through the channel chosen by the latter.
Passing from single-channel to multi-channel communications, Customer Relationship Management activities and relations with customers have reached a new level of interaction, involvement, and loyalty. And that's not all: another advantage that companies owe to multi-channel communication is the ability to effectively segment their audience and, consequently, implement ad hoc strategies designed for specific market niches.
The results for companies are far superior, customer satisfaction increases, as does trust in a brand, resulting in greater loyalty and more frequent purchases.
Companies which focus on multi-channel communications and modify their response to a customer based on his/her chosen platform, as well as differentiate their offer based on the channel, stand out from the competition and are able to create a stronger relationship with their customer base.
Automation: optimize processes and analyze all data
After the advent of the internet and the affirmation of multi-channel communications, the turning point in managing company and customer relations is automation. Automating a growing number of activities means rendering business processes more efficient and optimizing time and resources, with a consequent economic benefit.
We are in what is called the "Fourth Industrial Revolution", whose cornerstone is the ever closer relationship between machine and man and the integration of automatic systems to facilitate processes.
Automation has provided companies with complete reporting to support management procedures, analysis, programming, and the ability to recover value from activities which would impact the company's resources if carried out manually.
Despite the obvious advantages, choosing to entrust fundamental company processes to a machine can be frightening. In reality however, implementing automation systems (Interactive Voice Response, IVR) allows you to:
● manage routine tasks more efficiently (for example checking product availability in warehouses or solving common customer problems, two frequent requests which can be automated and help reduce the workload of qualified operators, who can instead offer their assistance to another level of customer support);
● limit the risks of human error, thereby improving customer service;
● handle larger volumes of activity;
● organize processes in compliance with certain quality standards;
● take advantage of greater transparency and traceability of each process.
That is why, thanks to multi-channel communication and automation, companies can raise the quality of their customer relations while always ensuring an effective and relevant answer that suits any type of user.
Your Voice provides companies with multiple multi-channel solutions to automate and streamline their business processes. These include Appointment reminder and Expiration reminder , which can be used to automate the process of notifying a customer of an appointment with your company or to strategically handle the renewal of customers' contracts.
Our reminder systems let you optimize your staff, reduce costs and time management processes, and increase your company's profits over the long term.
In addition, all of Your Voice's automated solutions can be used with the Pay-per-use model. Browse our website for all the automated solutions we have designed and developed (also suitable for small businesses).
What do you think about the new automated and multi-channel possibilities available to companies? Have you already tried some? Tell us about your experience.