A survey of 124 contact centres has found that traditional post is being favoured over Facebook when it comes to communicating effectively with customers.
The research, commissioned by Azzurri Communications, revealed that 35% of organisations added post as a new channel for their customers in the last year, compared to only 5% who added Facebook. Whilst Facebook has grown as a legitimate communications channel for many organisations in recent years, with 40% of organisations now offering Facebook as an option for their customers, its popularity may be reaching a peak.
Twitter, on the other hand, has been growing more quickly, yet there is still more work to be done: although 48% of organisations now use Twitter for customer service, 40% added Twitter only in the last year.
Despite the embracing of social media as a legitimate communications channel, many organisations are struggling to integrate social media (and other new channels) into their contact centres in order to serve their customers more adequately. Only 27% have adopted integrated multi-channel communications systems into their contact centres to track all interactions with a customer in one place – even though 65% of organisations admitted that the best solution for handling multiple communication channels is an integrated all-in-one system.
As a result, customer service standards are dropping; organisations without joined-up communications take over 7.5 times longer to respond to a single tweet than those that do (4.4 hours vs. 34.5 minutes on average); only 23% of organisations without integrated systems can see a full history of communication with a client vs. 63% of those with such a system; only 34% of organisations without integrated systems can map a customer’s journey, no matter which contact channel they use vs. almost all (93%) of those with such a system.
“Those organisations that fail to join the dots of their customer interactions risk losing customers, as they will simply move to another firm that is more organised,” said Rufus Grig, Chief Technology Officer, Azzurri Communications. “Customers want to interact with the organisations that serve them by whichever means is the most convenient for them, but they hate having to repeat themselves across every channel.”