Two architects from Tata Consultancy Services are going to talk about empowering digital customers through intelligent CX solutions at TM Forum Live! Asia this year, This article from them, Sangeetha Ramakrishnan, Lead Technical Architect for Bots, and Ramachandran Selvarajan, Chief Architect, gives a taste of their ideas.
Business will depend on ‘connected spenders’, so we’d better understand who they are. Market research company Neilsen describes the connected spender as a highly-engaged and digitally savvy group that will account for 46 percent (or $260 trillion) of the world’s consumption over the next decade.
The connected spender does not appreciate being limited by digital options. They like to activate the service, consume, pay and manage it across all the digital mediums at their disposal. The profile of the empowered digital customer looks like this:
- lives on their smart phone which drives everything from what they buy to who they are;
- is driven by their ability to try before they buy, to return a product, to unsubscribe a service at will, and to click their way to new options and choices;
- wants rapid/instant solutions to queries and problems;
- wants consistency across all channels;
- has access to multiple points of information, checking sources before making a decision; and
- can be loyal, but only if it goes both ways. Value comes from price, quality and honesty. They expect brands to understand everything from their needs, their history, and even the way they like to engage.
What has driven this shift from the passive to the empowered customer? Perhaps it’s our connected lives, our abundance of choice, or the ability to get what we want, when we want, where we want.
As consumers’ digital demands increase, telcos must reimagine their business models to better address the inherent expectations of these highly-informed, multi-service customers. It’s all about giving the customer the experience they want, not what you think they might need. Here’s how customer experience (CX) solutions can help:
Step 1 – Reaching them
You need to prepare for a modern landscape where:
- all media appears on a digital screen;
- all content is hosted in the cloud and streamed; and
- each device is merely a context to consume personalized content.
All this is possible when you identify the journey the customer takes using all the data at your disposal, in the right way.
Step 2 – Your data strategy
The enduring players in the data landscape will be those that can aggregate content from different devices to build perfect consumer profiles, allowing more relevant, customized offers.
Such insights are reframing the way we do business – from reactive, to proactive and predictive – and are increasingly changing consumers’ behavior and expectations.
Big data analytics help service providers and marketers to send more relevant, personalized and targeted communications than ever before, which consumers now not only welcome, but expect.
Even personalization is evolving, and we’re seeing more and more individualization, which is when you begin to anticipate and understand what the customer wants, and then take appropriate action (be it a new product, or adjusting interactions to make them more efficient and avoid complaints).
Step 3 – The right technology and how to use it
Consumers and b2b decision-makers want relevant content from their interactions, at the right time – that is the promise of artificial intelligence (AI) technology. A recent study by Oracle reported that AI and virtual reality (VR) are set to reshape CX by 2020, stating that more than three-quarters (78 percent) of brands have already implemented, or are planning to implement AI and VR by 2020 to better serve customers.
A brand is better prepared to serve their customer with technology that collates and analyzes information on a customer’s previous purchases, recent service issues, social media interactions, and preferred channels for interaction. Whether it’s for an AI chatbot or a social community manager acting on behalf of the brand, the customer data profile will inform customer interactions, so must be complete and accurate. Classic segmentation that lacks data about customer preferences will no longer be sufficient.
At the same time, it is important to set realistic expectations on what AI can do. AI-driven solutions need a lot of attention to design and detail, to yield a positive, smooth interaction experience.
Step 4 – Aligning with customer goals
As we’ve mentioned, the new digital customer wants an easy to use system, so that they can finish what they want to do quickly, easily and efficiently, and move on with their day.
Providing them with an easy way to get the right answer to their queries in a short time, or giving them a quickfire way to buy a new service, add a new product, view a bill, log a complaint etc; all of this increases customer satisfaction and hence the customer experience.