When it comes to the idea of automated customer service solutions, misunderstandings abound. For some, the thought of automated customer service inspires teeth gnashing in anticipation of receiving unintelligible answers to misunderstood inquiries. For others, there are fears of hyper-efficient interactions devoid of all warmth and emotion.
Not all of these misunderstandings are created equal but they are all, at their core, incorrect. Thankfully, there’s an ever-growing contingent of customer-centric organizations proving that automated solutions can create an optimal customer experience. Here’s a rundown of some of the tools you need to know, and what they can help your business accomplish.
Customer Relationship Management software helps you: keep it personal
Counter-intuitive though it may seem, automated customer service tools can help provide the warm human touch that can be such a differentiator. Customer Relationship Management or CRM software tracks virtually every aspect of the customer relationship – every interaction, transaction and sale, yes, but it can also keep personal data and information on file to be easily accessed by customer service employees.
This creates opportunities for employees to deepen the personal connection between customer and brand by proving time and time again that the customer in question is personally valued by the organization. Reaching out to find out how a purchased product is performing, sending along a token of appreciation on a birthday, or going the extra mile for someone like in these customer service experience stories will pay significant dividends not just with that particular customer, but through word of mouth.
With the way everyone loves to share on social media, companies reap big rewards from an extra special gesture extended to a single customer. Even if these gestures don’t go viral, word of mouth marketing is still the most trusted form of advertising among consumers.
Self-service tools help you: pre-emptively address common issues
Self-service tools like dynamic FAQs, workshops, tutorials, user communities and discussion forums allow customers to easily access answers to common questions and other pertinent information anytime they want and on the device they like to use. Not only does this empower customers with as much information as they desire, but it also keeps them from contacting customer support and tying up agents with common problems.
(Bonus tip: these self-service solutions can be designed to most effectively address common questions and issues with the aid of the aforementioned CRM software, which easily tracks customer stumbling blocks and pain points.)
Automatic callback helps you: value customers’ time
Everyone on this planet is utterly unique, yet we all have one thing in common: a hatred for being on hold. No matter how jaunty your hold music or how often that mechanical voice assures customers their call is important, waiting for an agent to become free is a rage-inducing situation, especially since it can be avoided altogether with the use of automatic callback, which is a system that allows customers to hang up and receive a phone call from a live agent when that agent is available.
AI-powered chat bots help you: cut down on customer effort
If your customers require service or support, there’s a good possibility they’re already annoyed. Don’t exacerbate the situation by requiring those customers to jump through hoops to first find contact information and then figure out which channel would be best for their interaction. Instead, position your customer service where your customers already are: messenger apps.
Leading AI-powered chat bots will integrate easily into the wildly popular Facebook Messenger app as well as Kik, Slack and WhatsApp in addition to regular SMS messages. These chat bots respond instantly, are limitlessly scalable, and thanks to the advanced Artificial Intelligence being used they allow customers to converse naturally, and will converse naturally in return, providing everything from account support to product recommendations to sale information to the ability to complete a transaction.
Automated customer service on the whole helps you: give the people what they want
One of the main things these automated solutions do is give your customers options. The people who like to help themselves can partake in the self-service options, the ones who like blazing fast service can hit up the chat bot, and those who most enjoy interacting with other humans will find response times from email, phone or social media agents much faster thanks to how much their load has been lightened by the automated solutions.
Automated customer service solutions are surprising in both what they can accomplish, and what they can help human customer service employees accomplish. With these tools, organizations can combine the best of both worlds to provide the optimal customer experience.
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