Is Your Customer in the Driver's Seat?

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Competition for customer mindshare is fierce, while loyalty is more elusive than ever. One poor customer experience will send a consumer to the competition without a second thought. Developments in analytics, such as speech analytics, enable companies to accurately and effectively identify customer issues and take immediate action to resolve them. The result is the ability to not only retain customers but to pinpoint new business opportunities.

We now live in a 24/7 world. Companies must engage with their customers and prospects wherever they are—using whichever channel they prefer. With this extended engagement, consumers' expectations are rising. So if their flight is delayed by an hour, or they find that their favorite restaurant, which says it is open on Sundays until 8pm isn't, or even if their tax bill arrives and is much more than expected, what do they do? They take to Twitter, Facebook, or any other social media site, to complain to their friends and followers.

And we all know that one negative tweet or blog post can go viral inhours. Content like this gets picked up by Web sites, read by thousands, retweeted, and commented on. So it's crucial to identify the root cause of issues and resolve them before they turn into public relations nightmares.

How Does This Relate to My Business?

The customer experience has become a major concern for organizations. It is essential that operations have the means to detect potentially unsatisfactory situations or emerging trends and have the capacity to act on this information immediately. An organization can respond in the right way to strengthen the customer relationship and brand—and limit the damage done. Once the correct action is taken, it is also important to measure the effectiveness of that action, with the help of sophisticated analytics.

Analyzing all activity around your brand can significantly help to monitor what's being said about your company, whether it's negative or positive, and take action accordingly. And it's not just across public channels such as social media— if the consumer is already complaining about an issue via social media, it may be too late to control the damage. It's crucial to proactively analyze all of the conversations occurring across customer service channels as they come through the contact center, including calls, email, and Web chat.

Traditional Call Sampling Is Not Enough

Quality monitoring in customer service terms is nothing new. The vast majority of companies have been using call recording and monitoring systems for some time, but those systems and processes usually only provide a partial picture of what is happening, manually reviewing only small, randomly selected samplings of calls.

Having quality analysts manually listen to calls is labor intensive, and therefore a very expensive process. As a result, most organizations only review a small fraction of the calls it handles, with the industry average being to review just 1 percent or 2 percent. If other types of interactions, such as email, chat, and/or social media are included, the fraction of the organization's conversations with customers or prospects that are being reviewed becomes even smaller.

New Technology Extracts Nuggets of Gold

But enormous business opportunities are hidden within those conversations. The information that can be extracted from conversations with customers and prospects is invaluable in understanding the customer experience. Organizations must engage in strategic process improvements that go beyond selective samplings of recorded communications.

Rather than a lack of data, the challenge lies in the ability to extract the "nuggets of gold" from the wealth of information produced by any organization efficiently and effectively, and make those insights actionable to deliver meaningful results.

New innovations in analytics, such as interaction analytics, which includes both speech analytics and text analytics, can transform customer service by analyzing not just a few, but all conversations with customers or prospects over all channels including calls, e-mails, chat, and social 

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