Sparkcentral Extends Its Customer Engagement Platform



Sparkcentral has updated its customer engagement platform with WeChat and Facebook Messenger support as well as a new Salesforce integration, improved automations, and reporting.

"With the explosion of social media and now messaging apps, customers have at their fingertips the most instant and convenient ways to reach out to brands. They also expect a faster, easier standard of customer service than they get on traditional channels," said Meg Christolini, Sparkcentral's vice president of product, in a statement. "We're building the foundation for proactive, predictive, and highly personalized customer service. By adding WeChat and Messenger to the platform, we're enabling our partners to engage customers all over the world on their preferred channels, while giving agents the context and history they need to solve problems fast through a powerful Salesforce integration."

The new capabilities include the following:

  • Messenger and WeChat customer service: Agents can reference structured messages like flight information, receipts, or shipping notifications, without having to ask the customer for details. Additionally, companies can get reporting insights on incoming volume and other metrics with these channel integrations.
  • Salesforce integration: This out-of-the-box integration enables companies to link contacts and conversation histories to their Salesforce.com customer records. This bidirectional sync enriches the customer's contact profile in Sparkcentral with contact level attributes, such as case numbers, personally identifiable information, or membership status.

Sparkcentral also revealed today a number of planned enhancements for early 2017. Included among them are the following:

  • Improved workflow: Sparkcentral's built-in automations, which ensure that the most urgent messages are prioritized, will soon include skill-based routing to specialized agents, retroactive automations to categorize historical customer engagements, and streamlined agent workflows.
  • Bots and automations: Agent-centered automations, designed to better route and determine customer needs, and bots will be employed to help optimize agent time, automate predictable workflows, like paying bills, showing account balances, and other simple tasks. Artificial intelligence and deep learning will also be used to gain actionable customer insights from wide-ranging interaction data.
  • Simple bot builder to create automated first-contact workflows, ensuring bot conversation history is provided to agents.
  • Proactive customer service, identifying customer issues and events before a customer seeks assistance. Based on key activities and behavior, Sparkcentral will be able to customize a proactive engagement with a customer.
  • Scaling teams and markets: Sparkcentral is introducing the ability to create custom teams with specific roles, access, and usage parameters for different regions, brands, and service functions. Teams will give brands advanced controls over agent collaboration and permissions.
  • Actionable analytics: Enhanced, redesigned global reporting tools will include customizable, widgetized dashboards for managers as well as APIs that will enable business analysts to include social care in standardized contact center reporting and analysis. The addition of performance trackers within the Sparkcentral interface will also provide real-time feedback to agents on adherence to service-level agreements, resolution time, response time, and other key success metrics for in-the-moment care.

"The growth and sophistication of the Sparkcentral Customer Engagement Platform reflects the evolving needs of our partners in the way they approach customer care," said Davy Kestens, Sparkcentral's CEO, in a statement. "Social and mobile customer service are now table stakes, and on the horizon is the use of artificial intelligence, bots, and a growing number of messaging channels loved by consumers. We are building a platform that's future-ready and will become the customer engagement system of record for years to come."