The Rise of the “Everything Customer”
May 18, 2021
Today’s customer is more sophisticated than ever. They are inquisitive yet impatient, decisive yet unpredictable, and logical yet emotionally perceptive. They know what they want, and it’s simply expected that organizations understand and deliver. This paradoxical consumer has been coined by Gartner as the “Everything Customer,” flipping the traditional customer experience model on its head.
Our partners at Avaya recently published a report in partnership with Contact Center Week (CCW) that outlines seven ways to deliver the kind of experiences the “Everything Customer” is looking for. Here are four of them:
Connect every touchpoint throughout the entire customer journey, both physical and digital, effortlessly.
Businesses are getting the memo: Last year, 96 percent of businesses surveyed said they understood the importance of servicing customers in their preferred touchpoints, and 87 percent are actively working to honor that preference. For the “Everything Customer,” these touchpoints are constantly moving and changing. This could mean starting a conversation with a virtual agent via web chat while working from home, then elevating to a phone call with a live agent to continue the conversation in your car while driving. The “Everything Customer” wants access to every touchpoint – both physical and digital – in order to compose their own service experience, and expect them all to be seamlessly connected throughout the entire service journey.
Match the best resources to each interaction with intelligent routing.
Though speed and intuitive design are important, the “Everything Customer” seeks a real connection with the brands they do business with. With the right technology, you can apply intelligent routing to your customer interactions – varying the experience based on customer, situational, and employee data. You can route customers based on personality, past inquiries, or even the agent they spoke with the last time they called (versus having to deal with, “Well, Mike from billing told me I qualified for a return”).
Here’s an example: For a communications provider using intelligent routing, they could identify an incoming caller as stay-at-home mom, Anna, with two young children based in Southern California — and use that information to route her to nearby agent, Tori, who shares some of these commonalities. Imagine real-time voiced-based artificial intelligence (AI) indicating that Anna is unhappy with her service and Tori being able to offer her an incentive to keep her satisfied. Though this is happening seamlessly, behind the scenes, Anna is only aware that her experience is far better than what she normally expects from a contact center.
Get ahead of every interaction by predicting customers’ needs and proactively engaging with them.
The “Everything Customer” has high expectations for what organizations should know about them: whether they are at risk of switching to a competitor, what products they want you to recommend to them…quite literally, everything. Artificial Intelligence (AI) can power solutions that can help you get ahead of interactions to ensure customers get what they want, when they want it.
Real-time voiced-based AI is a good example. This capability drives proactive engagement based on interaction insights (an analysis of key words or phrases spoken during customer conversations). Organizations can identify customers who are at risk of churn via sentiment analysis and proactively provide personalized retention offers (like in the above example with Anna and Tori). Or, it can identify potential high-value customers ready to make a purchase. You can also create engagement tactics based on patterns you find from your analysis (ex: if male customers aged 28-33 living in the Dallas area are repeatedly asking about a certain product you sell, you can create a targeted outreach campaign to similar customers who haven’t purchased yet with a discount code to try it out).
Prioritize intelligent self-service and digital applications.
The “Everything Customer” wants to be empowered to find the answers they need on their own – elevating to human interaction if need be – with AI automatically tailoring the experience to their specific needs. There are a few ways you can achieve this with intelligent self-service and digital applications:
- Move beyond traditional IVR by embedding real-time AI to automatically capture and process self-service voice interactions. Deliver conversational, 24/7 customer support always with the option to connect customers with a live agent if needed. If escalated, employees receive conversation details with prompts and step-by-step guidance to help solve the question.
- Evolve virtual bots into virtual agents that can deliver self-service automation across all your digital channels: Web, voice, SMS and social.
- For your agent team, AI agents can help deliver more complete information, context, and can advise agents on the next best action to take for a particular customer.