How 3 top retail and eCommerce brands lead CX from the contact center
Brick-and-mortar retail and eCommerce, once considered rivals, are now two sides of a unified strategy to engage customers through the entire customer lifecycle. And, between in-store and digital shopping experiences lies the hub of customer communications: the contact center.
Today, customer loyalty is heavily based on the quality of customer experience—often more even than the product or good itself. Retailers who prioritize self-service, proactive alerts, and guided customer support provide the kind of customer experience that promotes customer loyalty—namely, characterized by personalization, real-time notifications and messaging, 24/7 customer service, secure payments, and the flexibility to communicate with customers on their preferred channels. Here are leading examples of retailers who are designing experiences centered around ease, speed, personalization, and convenience for customers.
Marks & Spencer uses speech-to-text technology to get customers where they need to go, faster
Marks & Spencer’s AI-powered Interactive Voice Response (IVR) with natural language processing (NLP) …
Three steps for creating CX that sticks—and how to evolve it with artificial intelligence
Much has been said about the role that AI and data can play in customer experience. Much less has been discussed about the implications behind those changes. Consider this scenario: An application aimed at one customer at a time, providing an increased level of sophistication and satisfaction with each interaction, constantly improving experiences as it learns from the previous one. Each level calls for increased support in communications, data, and AI. Let’s explore those levels and how they evolve.
Level 1: Hospitality
Checking into a hotel, even with "priority" status, can be tedious and often result in nothing more than validating your identity and method of payment and being given a room.
Instead, leading providers are exploring what's possible with CX when you know what customers want, combine data from multiple sources, use instantaneous inferencing, reach them on multiple channels, and generally make life more pleasant for them—without being creepy …
Introducing the 2020 State of Customer Engagement Report by Twilio, available now
Is your business in touch with the trends, events, and moments shaping customer engagement in 2020?
Digital bombardment is real—overwhelmed consumers are increasingly discerning when it comes to how they choose to interact with their chosen companies and brands.
At the same time, chatbots, voice assistants, and conversational AI are everywhere you look. Even so, consumers aren’t clear on what conversational AI can do, and the potential of the technology remains largely untapped.
The trends shaping how companies and organizations interact with customers is also shaping politics in a time when engagement—and galvanization—is higher than ever.
And through it all, the customer experience remains of utmost importance, driving top companies to hire C-level roles focused solely on CX, and its unbreakable thread throughout their organization.
Customer engagement is in a state of constant change. And, since Twilio helps 170,000+ customers engage their customers in every possible way, we have a …
Leveraging communications platforms to access insights: How the digital revolution came to be, and where it’s going
Customers today demand more and better communication from the businesses and brands they engage with. Market-leading companies are launching second- and third-generation communications strategies that are taking them past just communication to building new experiences, generating engagement in the process.
Realizing how to build these communication-enabled and communication-driven applications is the next challenge for all companies and the guiding star for the next decade of business transformation. But one of the biggest hurdles in the imagine-if and what-if worlds is that practitioners on the front lines miss the clues and the transition points. Enter our thought leaders.
This series represents an amazing opportunity to engage our industry’s top thought leaders on a single theme. I hope these articles help you embrace the worlds of digital communications and customer experience, to inspire new perspectives and spur new ideas for better engagement strategies and, ultimately, strengthen your customer relationships at scale.
Reimagining IVR for retail
Today, Interactive voice response (IVR) can do a whole lot more than just deflect calls. For retailers of all types, IVR can be a powerful tool throughout the customer lifecycle. Across sales, service, and marketing, retailers are using IVR systems as part of their overall personalization and engagement strategies to foster customer loyalty and grow share of wallet. Let’s explore some insights and real-world examples to help you develop an IVR strategy suited for retail.
How to get more from IVR
The technology-driven shift in consumer expectations, behavior, and preferences that continues to disrupt the retail industry is also defining it. Retailers of all types are re-evaluating how to engage their customers, as the quality of customer experience is now a greater brand differentiator than the quality of a good or service.
The best customer experiences are characterized by ease, convenience, and personalization. To achieve this, top retailers are leveraging …
Three factors shaping the future of enterprise contact centers
In today’s market, there are more channels than ever on which brands and companies can engage with their customers. At the same time, customers expect a seamless experience from one channel to the next and want to engage with their chosen brands and companies on the channels they want, when they want to.
Not ready to rip-and-replace? No problem. Read about powerful ways to augment your contact center.
That means the contact center of old, with locked-in phone trees, long wait times, and unclear menu options—among a lot of other disadvantages—just don’t cut it anymore. Building strong relationships relies on clear, consistent, trusted communications before, during, and after a purchase, and that means the contact center is the lifeblood of customer loyalty. To help inform how you approach improving customer interactions, here are three critical factors shaping the future of enterprise contact centers into 2020 and beyond: a changing workforce, …
How Ancestry, Deliveroo, and Podium build conversational experiences
The ground zero of business messaging is a simple one-way notification.
It gets the job done, but these days, it’s pretty impersonal.
For routine queries, companies are increasingly using in-app chats or texts to connect customers and employees to efficiently solve issues and create a better customer experience. Leading companies have figured out that the next evolution of great customer experience is through messaging.
But, integrating different messaging channels and maintaining the infrastructure to support cross-channel conversations presents a multifaceted technical challenge for businesses—including orchestration, participant management, and message archives.
Read what conversational messaging means for business.
During SIGNAL 2019, we discussed the notion of 'conversations' and how the concept could change the way we do business. We heard from three incredible presenters at different companies, all of which are building conversational experiences at scale to suit their unique business needs.
Here’s an abridged discussion between Twilio’s Christine Roberts, …
How to match notifications to the right customer channel
Businesses want better ways to communicate relevant, personalized, and timely information to customers. Account notifications are one way to do it, but doing it well can be a spider’s web of timing, various notification types, preferred channels, and a lot more—all while trying to scale.
Channel choice can make or break customer engagement. Consumer preferences are changing, and more than two-thirds of consumers prefer to communicate with businesses via messaging. Consider this: four-out-of-five emails go unopened. In fact, SMS has five times the open rate compared to email.
SMS alerts are the single best way to keep customers in the loop about important changes to their accounts. And notifications via SMS and push notifications have been shown to be more effective. By ensuring customers are notified in real-time (regardless of channel), and are receiving these notifications via their preferred channels, companies can reinforce customer loyalty and increase customer satisfaction. …
Marks & Spencer: Keep it simple and trust your team to build a customer service solution that lasts
As a major retailer selling everything from party food platters to duvet covers to kids' clothes, UK-based retailer Marks & Spencer has a customer base as diverse as its product offerings.
And yet, according to enterprise architect Akash Parmar, the company had, for a long time, tried to pigeon-hole customers into three or four interactive voice response (IVR) options any time a call came in.
Unsurprisingly, it didn’t go well.
“The key challenge we were facing was the fact we just didn’t understand. We were getting ten million calls a year and didn’t clearly understand what these calls were about,” he said.
It goes to show that the challenges facing a multi-billion dollar company can be the same ones plaguing a one-person start-up: namely, understanding and then communicating effectively with your target audience.
To solve this challenge, the company created a Natural Language Platform (NLP) l that captured more than …
Integrating SMS and marketing email for richer customer experiences
Businesses using SMS and email together have a powerful opportunity to reach their customers through targeted messages that improve their overall experience. Just like SMS, email is extremely useful for the operation of your business, and when you combine them, your communication is more powerful. Email and SMS work in tandem to provide your contacts with messages that reinforce each other. In fact, email is also the most preferred channel for consumers:
By using multiple communication channels together, you create a seamless, connected experience for your customers, one that inspires trust and ensures they look forward to your messages.
Email and SMS together amplify your engagement efforts for every part of the customer lifecycle. Here are some of the most common uses cases for leveraging SMS in addition to email:
A reminder is a perfect example of how SMS can enhance your existing communication plan with your customers. If …