In the world of customer service, times are changing—in terms of customer expectations and the technologies that can help you meet them. Here’s what you need to know.
Customer service is once again in the spotlight as brands increasingly turn an eye toward how they deliver their customer experience. Study after study has shown that customer expectations are on the rise, while brand loyalty is on the decline. A history of great customer relationships isn’t enough. Every brand touch point is both an opportunity and an imperative to deliver an outstanding experience. Here’s a closer look at how emerging trends are influencing the future of customer service.
Smarter Tools Drive Customer Service Experiences
As we’ve discussed many times in the Marketing Daily Advisor, a variety of new trends are reshaping the customer service landscape. Emerging tools such as emotional sentiment analysis, complex chatbot solutions, and artificial intelligence (AI)-assisted knowledge bases are improving both the efficiency and the outcomes of customer service interactions. As brands move into 2020 and beyond, there are two key trends with regard to customer service technology. First, brands are finding new ways to use machine learning technology to shape entirely digital customer experiences. Second, brands are also leveraging smarter technologies to help human customer service agents offer faster and more personalized service.
Managers Are Taking a Different Approach to Teambuilding
In the past, many brands have regarded customer service departments largely as cost centers. Therefore, management discussions have often centered on how to lower costs, increase efficiency, and achieve increasingly difficult goals with fewer resources. However, as it has become clear that customer service teams are on the forefront of delivering customer experience, brands have begun to invest in customer service again. Increasingly, managers are looking for ways to strategically hire customer service representatives with the potential for long-term growth, and they are taking more time to mentor employees and invest in their training.
Customer Service Departments Are More Tightly Integrated with Other Parts of the Organization
In the past, many organizations have treated customer service as its own silo. Typically, these agents pick up the customer relationship and management after sales, marketing, and perhaps implementation have completed their work. Yet as brands find ways to retain customers, it has become clear that tighter integration throughout the customer life cycle is critical. Whether you’re working to ensure that customer service continues the excellent experience begun by your sales team or you’re enabling information sharing between your customer success department and customer service, achieving a greater level of collaboration can have positive long-term effects on your brand’s health and customer retention rates.
Business is constantly changing, and customer service is not static. The introduction of new technologies, organizational structures, and a fresh take on helping customer service teams succeed promise to improve customer service in the years ahead. These are just a few trends that we expect to see more of in 2020.