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In the old days, if a customer had a question or concern about a product, they would reach for their land line and dial the 1-800 number printed on the back of the package. After a few rings, they would be connected with a call center associate, who would do their best to resolve the customers’ inquiry with the information they had available. If the customer had to call back into the call center at a later date – say if they had a follow up question – chances were they’d be connected to a different associate. And they’d be forced to repeat their information over again. And again. And again.
But, the good news was that even if the experience – or experiences – wasn’t that great, the worst that would happen was that the customer might tell a few friends, and those few friends wouldn’t buy a product from that same brand. Chances were, the negative ramifications would end there.
Those days are long gone. Today, instead of just calling into a call center, a customer might look for their answers online, reach out through the brand’s social media page, or send an email. They might do a combination of all three. And, as you probably guessed, that customer will expect the brand to recognize who they are and what their problem is, without having to repeat themselves over and over and over again. If the brand fails to get it right the first time, the customer has the power to spread the word widely and instantly across the web. Before the brand knows it, those few lost customers just turned into hundreds of lost customers.
To survive this new reality, brands need to transform their old-school call centers into new-school contact centers that are capable of identifying every unique customer, removing the friction from the experience, and responding via any and all interaction channels – not just voice. Those that are able to make the switch will be rewarded with life-long customer loyalty. Those that aren’t will find themselves losing business to their competitors that can.
Transforming a call center into a contact center may seem like a daunting task. The truth is, it does require the right mix of people, processes, and technology to be successful. But once everything is in place, the benefits are endless.
To learn what you can do to get started along the journey, read our eBook, "Blast Off to the Future of Customer Engagement." Inside you’ll discover: