customerpowerThe customer service landscape is changing at a blinding pace as emerging technologies and their convergence make keeping up, much less pulling ahead, a continuous challenge. There are eight overarching trends that are making an across-the-board impact for leaders in the customer service and experience space:
1. New Age Support: Millennial customers represent the largest segment of customers since the baby boomers, and they have exponentially-growing expectations for brands and their customer service.
2. Power Shifts from Brand to Customer: In the past, businesses and organizations have been privy to a Wizard of Oz type of respect from consumers, where the brand could broadcast its sales and marketing messages to all without much question or public dialogue. Customers wanting to speak with the man behind the curtain reached out via channels closed to the general public view, controlled by scripts which standardized the service process and ensured predictable outcomes. But the time of the brand controlling its appearance from behind the curtain is no more.
3. Speed and Agility Provide the Advantage: In a 2013 LivePerson Connecting with Customers report, 83% of more than 5,000 consumers said they consistently need some type of support during their online journey, and 70% of those surveyed expect assistance within five minutes. Yes, five minutes.
4. Social Media, It’s Not Just for Marketing Anymore: Even while recognizing social media’s mass proliferation and the power to alter public perception and opinion of a brand with just a single post or tweet, most mid-market to enterprise brands have not moved to integrate social media into their key business processes. For some, social media remains a marketing-siloed function. But that’s about to change…
5. Mobile Matters: In a February 2013 Forrester Research report, Mobile Engagement Demands Process Transformation, Forrester forecasts that companies will spend about $900 million on mobile process reinvention services in 2013, a number that will more than triple in 2014. Brands must now answer to the channel that has become part of our global lifestyle.
6. The Convergence of the Twain – SoMoGlo: Mobile, social, SoMoLo, SoMo Glo, SoMoClo, social TV, multi-device, click-to-call… as more and more channels begin to mix and meld, it will be increasingly hard to offer service on one but not the other. From phones to tablets to laptops and TVs, Ericsson predicts that more than 50 billion devices will be connected to the web by 2020.
7. The Big Challenge of Big Data: The Nexus of Forces has created a user-driven ecosystem and a vast amount of information which must be gathered and managed from more sources and customer engagement channels than ever before. The ability to manage, select, focus and act on data will make all the difference going forward.
8. Knowledge is Power: A recent study from Fleishman-Hillard found that 89% of consumers go directly to business websites or turn to Google, Bing, social media or online reviews to find information on products, services or businesses before any human interaction takes place, if it ever does. Content is king for brands, every facet of it, and that includes customer service.
New Parature Whitepaper Details 8
Megatrends Evolving Customer Service
Parature’s new whitepaper, Customer Service: The Next Generation, details the eight megatrends above, featuring a wealth of new statistics and key insights from Forrester and Gartner analysts on best practices and the trends that demand every brand’s immediate attention.
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