Monday, March 7, 2016

The Customer Experience is Evolving

Social media and texting are having a profound impact on the way customers and companies communicate.  Their have been studies done by Hailo, a taxi app and by the Pew Research Center.  Statistics that have been published by Andrew Prokop indicate findings that suggest the evolution.  These findings include:
1.       Text messages represent the two most often used method of contact by cell phone (both sending and receiving) whereas the voice phone call ranks as the 6th most frequently used method.
2.       American women text more frequently than men (14%)
3.       80% of American adults text every day.
4.       Text messages are opened more frequently than emails (98% versus 20%)
5.       Americans exchange more texts than phone calls
6.       More calls are coming to call centers from cell phones than from and lines
7.       One study from 2012 (source unknown) noted that texting was rated higher than voice communication in terms of customer satisfaction (text scored 90 out of 100 points and  voice scored 77 out of 100).
These statistics raise two issues (one good and one not so good)
The good news is that by cross training support personnel to respond to both productivity can be dramatically reduce the dead time that occurs during a lull in the arrivals.

The bad news is that the incremental stress that will be experienced by call center personnel and support personnel despite their ability. The fact that service personnel may be trained to have the ability to multitask multiple text messages as well as dealing with customers on the phone may have a deleterious effect over time.

The real problem is that text messaging is fast becoming (if it has not already become) a new means for supporting customers.  This is an issue that cannot be ignored and must be managed. 

The bottom line is that the world of on line support has just experienced a dramatic new dimension that can be used either as a strategic advantage or, if ignored, will become a major deterrent to customer satisfaction and loyalty.

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