With the ever-increasing digitisation of customer interactions, the increase in remote work and increased use cases of artificial intelligence (AI), small and mid-sized businesses (SMBs) feel the pressures to keep up.
But providing the digital-first, AI-assisted experience the business goliaths provide is out of reach, right? Wrong.
An AI-powered experience orchestration platform – with digital and automation components that allow you to reach and assist your customers and prospects as well as built-in workforce engagement capabilities that allow the “work from anywhere, anytime” environment – is within reach for businesses of all sizes and budgets.
The key is understanding how to use this technology to design highly personalised experiences that show off your strengths and differentiate your brand.
And SMBs actually have one competitive advantage over their larger competitors: They’re smaller, so they’re closer to their customers. And that smaller size makes them more agile.
I think back to early in my career when I would meet friends for lunch at a local eatery called Peter’s Diner. When you walked in, Peter greeted you by name.
He asked how you were doing and, when you asked him the same, he would always reply “Never seen it so good!”
As we selected a booth and sat down, Peter’s wife Helen would come over and strike up a conversation asking about our day, our families and what’s new.
After placing our orders, one of their daughters would bring our lunches to the table and check in, asking us what was new.
You’ve probably experienced this type of environment in your neighborhood. There were a lot of options for lunch, including many larger food chains that offer lower prices, faster service and convenient parking. But almost every day of the week, we went to Peter’s. Why?
The answer is that Peter’s created a highly personalised experience for everyone who visited. They made it a point to recognise every customer. If you were a repeat customer, they knew you and understood your preferences.
According to a recent Forbes article, “Small businesses can offer a more personalised and customised service.
With large businesses, there is often a ‘one-size-fits-all’ mentality. Small businesses can use this to their advantage by taking the time to get to know the potential customer, evaluating their needs and developing a solution that is perfect for the customer.”
Some would argue that this mom-and-pop experience is too niche or that it doesn’t apply to bigger business operations.
If we break down the components that make this experience so differentiated and appealing, it becomes apparent that we can find a long-term path to scale it.
The Peter’s Diner brand spoke in a welcoming, inclusive voice that drew people in and kept them coming back. Recognition and personalisation came from understanding who each customer was and their history.
And the positive brand voice of “Never seen it so good!” set the tone that you were going to feel good and satisfied at the conclusion of your experience.
Connection and Personalisation — At Scale
As we think about providing this type of experience at scale, it starts with data — not only collecting data but having it available in the moments of truth.
An AI-powered experience orchestration platform accesses data in real time to provide a personalised experience that’s aware of situational context.
The platform identifies who the customer or prospect is, where they are in their journey, and the relationship they have with your company. From there, it’s about connecting with the right resource.
A virtual concierge greets the customer, identifies and clarifies intent, and guides each interaction to the right resource to satisfy their need and deliver successful business outcomes.
As the journey continues and evolves, each resource (human or automated) is context-aware of the customer and their journey, so the conversation continues seamlessly and effortlessly.
They’re greeted by name; each resource validates their intent; and they’re provided with relevant knowledge to satisfy their needs.
This context-aware approach increases accuracy in clarifying intents, and quickly guides users to self-service options they might not use or even be aware of otherwise.
Orchestrating this type of experience reduces customer effort, increases satisfaction and reduces operational cost. Win, win, win!
And with holistic experience orchestration, you define the moments when self-service is the best option, and moments where the human connection will bring the highest business value and impact.
In fact, a recent study by found that 64% of respondents agree that delivering a great customer experience elevates competitive advantage.
At these key moments of truth — when you connect customers to your human resources to add value and differentiate your brand — AI routing leverages all known attributes and intent of this customer.
It then compares that with performance attributes of each of your representatives to rank and connect each interaction to the best resource to assist this customer and drive a successful outcome.
Leveraging AI to dynamically connect people in this way reduces unnecessary cost, effort and frustration with transfers. Additionally, it improves first-contact resolution and customer satisfaction.
Having employees who are skilled and informed enables you to scale the connected brand experience across your entire enterprise.
A cloud contact centre solution enables you to extend your employee footprint beyond company walls and borders to allow employees to work from anywhere and anytime.
This increases your available resource pool and workforce diversity, creates geographic hardening for disaster recovery, and expands your time-of-day coverage.
Specialised tools like unified communication and gamification create an environment of connection and unity across all your employees.
Whether they’re sitting together in a centre or working as a virtual team. Quality monitoring ensures you can maintain high levels of service; interaction analytics help you to understand why customers are reaching out — providing you with the insights to design your next phase of self-service options.
Data and technology tools can help you create the “Peter’s Diner” connectedness across your enterprise.
You can welcome each of your customers into your brand experience; recognise them and know who they are; understand their history and relationship with the company; and then connect them with skilled resources who have the context and understanding to continue the conversation and reinforce the value of your products and services.
Peter and his family had to rely on their memories to paint the picture of each customer’s context, but enterprises don’t.
Journey management tools quickly show you the paths to success and the points of friction your customers are having in their experiences with you.
And a tight integration with CRM systems surface customer profiles and transaction history in real time.
AI assistance provides relevant knowledge as the conversation unfolds, so all resources convey a strong understanding of customer expectations and needs and deliver confident answers to satisfy them.
Discover the path to scaling your unique small business advantage so when people ask you, “How is it going?”, you can really respond “Never seen it so good!”This blog post has been re-published by kind permission of Genesys – View the Original Article
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Call Centre Helper is not responsible for the content of these guest blog posts. The opinions expressed in this article are those of the author, and do not necessarily reflect those of Call Centre Helper.