Interacting with, and collecting data about, customers across different parts of your business, using a variety of tools may well be unavoidable—but it also makes it harder to understand each customer’s experience and preferences. The problem becomes bigger the more customers you acquire, unless you put in place scalable systems for managing omnichannel communications.
New technologies continue to emerge that customers are keen to use to engage with brands, such as chatbots, messaging apps and voice-based search using ‘smart’ devices. However, core marketing and customer service channels like phone, email, websites and printed mail are still highly valued.
The benefits of offering people a ‘channel of choice’ experience cannot be overlooked
Research shows that customers want options when it comes to communicating with a company, favouring the channels that help them achieve their goals quickly and painlessly. Choice at the expense of effectiveness does not make for happy customers. So, providing great experiences across diverse channels is essential, but it must be done well to contribute to a positive outcome overall.
How can companies achieve the seamless delivery of highly-attuned communications across a growing spread of channels?
The key is to simplify the business systems ensuring you can harness data from across your digital ecosystem to more easily understand individual customers. With an end-to-end platform for customer communications management (CCM) and exploiting an application programming interface (API) — you can link multiple systems to help you expertly manage channel of choice.
Businesses are using more applications than ever before. One recent US study found that nearly 10% of businesses now have more than 200 apps in use. No wonder then, that the majority of IT executives around the globe consider API integration to be a critical strategic move: 68% said APIs delivered the most value through ‘connected experiences’.
Integrated systems help companies overcome the barriers of multiple, disparate tools and legacy software to get a holistic view of customers and meet their unique expectations, as and where needed.
Give customers choice and control interactions with an integrated system
How does omni channel integration work?
Unifying customer communication management starts with getting the foundations right. The bedrock must be a modern and flexible CCM platform that administers cross-platform access, intuitive planning and execution tools plus insightful reporting capabilities.
After all, the real barrier to engaging with customers on their channel of choice has little to do with the functionality of individual channels —but rather, it rests on a businesses’ internal capacity to see and manage multiple streams of information about multiple customers.
Given the increasing importance of being able to have multiple software applications connect to each other and share information in real-time, it pays to invest in a system built on cloud-based architecture that supports a modern application programming interface.
Choose a CCM platform that enables API integration across:
- Two-way communication channels like social media, live chat, and email
- Self-service channels such as secure web forms and customer portals/accounts
- Customer service tools that may include phone, email and web portals
- Systems that store customer data, for example your CRM and other legacy software
In a well-designed omni channel environment, your CCM platform melds both the channels customers use, and the tools your team employs to deliver quality support and targeted communication to customers. A feature-rich solution like virsaic™ is ideal for organisations that need to improve or restructure back-end operations in order to achieve a seamless and immediate approach to meeting customer expectations in a compliant way.
Benefits of providing a better omni channel experience in a scalable manner
An effective CCM platform carefully integrated to ensure smooth information-sharing offers a single customer view. Details of each person’s journey and interactions with your brand over time are centralised and accessible by all relevant members of your team. It supports more structured and streamlined decision-making processes and workflows, and also makes reporting faster and easier.
An integrated system that enables channel of choice lets your employees provide personalised and timely communications in the customer’s preferred way, while also more easily adhering to any legal or compliance requirements.
It makes it simpler to:
• Engage customers in real-time across multiple touch points
• Gain visibility and control of customer data
• Capture customer consent and manage preferences
• Ensure preference management workflows are compliant
• Deliver tailored communication and marketing activities
• Reliably automate and streamline customer interactions
People want to be able to choose how, where and when they interact—and there is no one size fits all. Create an ideal environment for managing customer preferences across their choice of channels by embracing a comprehensive CCM system and API integration.