Welcome to the third post in a blog series sharing insights from a panel discussion I recently hosted, titled "Why Customers and Companies are Embracing Asynchronous Business Messaging.”
The panel comprised three customer experience (CX) experts:
Want to start at the beginning of the series? Here you go ….
Or if you prefer to go right to the source, here’s where to watch the on-demand webcast.
Using traditional metrics, business text messaging shows phenomenal results; for instance, overall customer satisfaction (CSAT) is 18 percent higher than with chat. But asynchronous communications changes the rules of customer engagement, which raises the question: “Should success be measured in the same old ways?”
The short answer is “No.”
To truly succeed using business text messaging, you’ll have to look at and measure the customer experience a bit differently than before.
Asynchronous communications and AI-powered conversational commerce are leading a shift in how customer contact centers measure success. CSAT scores are still critical—come on, did you really think CX leaders were about to ignore customer satisfaction?—but organizations must now look at a broader range of criteria.
Agent experience—Although business messaging agents handle more simultaneous conversations than their chat counterparts—seven or eight versus only two or three—they are more satisfied with their experience (AKA “happier on the job”) and, consequently, more productive and less likely to leave. All of which are better, in turn, for both the customer experience—happier, more experienced agents lead to happier customers—and the company bottom line (better retention equals fewer costs).
Stickiness—Business text messaging creates a new communication paradigm between agent and customer, one that is flexible and spread over time. Conversations can be paused and picked up later, which not only enhances the customer experience but also creates an ongoing connection. Customer engagement moves even further from being a one-and-done experience.
Availability—Business text messaging reaches customers at the exact time they need it, always in the right place at the right time. “Customers are engaged with brands at the moment they want, in the manner they want,” said Gerry Woodbury, director of customer care at Columbia Sportswear. “It’s freedom of choice and movement.”
Sentiment analysis—Using AI to analyze sentiment in real time elevates the understanding of customer needs and intent to another level, and leads to higher yield interactions. “Being able to analyze emotional response through sentiment is very interesting,” said Rob Lawson, who heads up partnerships and advocacy for Google’s Business Message platform. “As a company we've been moving customers to some of these more sophisticated user journeys, where it's about purchasing, or signup, or booking appointments.”
Customer value—Messaging integrates with rich content and interactive elements to speed customer journeys and bring added value, exposing them to promotions, products, and services—on any device at any time. These higher-value engagements must be tracked and measured to get a full picture of how the new customer engagement model is growing business.
Remember: Adopting business text messaging isn’t simply a matter of adding a new channel to your communications mix. Asynchronous communications requires a different approach to achieving customer experience excellence. You need the right technology and the right partner.
Spoiler alert: That’s us.
In the next—and final!—blog in the series, I’ll do my best to encapsulate our panelists’ advice for effectively starting your business text messaging project.
Until then, check out the following messaging resources:
Web page: The Benefits of Asynchronous Messaging