Oisin Lunny Senior Market Development Manager for mobile enterprise development firm OpenMarket, tells SBC the importance of recognising, researching and creating mobile centric customer experiences (CEX) as modern consumers develop mobile-first lifestyles.
Mobilising the Total Customer Experience
I recently learned from mobile network analysis firm GSMA Intelligence that humans are now in the minority compared to SIM cards. More people have had cell phones than toilets for over a year according to the UN, while mobile devices overtook toothbrushes way back in 2011, according to Google
Every day more and more B2C processes are digitized and mobilized such as in-play betting, casino games, and all kinds of shopping, purchasing and fulfilment. Also reservations, ticketing and appointment reminders; banking and bill payment; customer service and support.
With companies like Amazon, Google, Apple and other leaders setting the bar for easy and seamless user experiences, customers’ expectations for service have changed radically. The concept of waiting on hold for customer service while an infinite flute solo twitters away the long minutes is not in line with the expectations of todays mobile-first consumers.
Customers today demand smooth and efficient experiences throughout the whole relationship (customer lifecycle), from the moment they start to look for a product or service to the moment they decide whether to replace it or upgrade. In that continuum of customer touch points, companies have many opportunities to improve the customer experience and to engage with customers where they are: on their mobile devices.
A mobile-centric approach to customer experience (CEX) is no longer a “nice to have,” it’s a MUST have. Mobile devices are how people choose to access their digital lives, so companies need to be there as well. Companies who are not using mobile are not connecting with the public, and more importantly, their employees and customers.
For example: research is showing that consumers want modern customer service options that dovetail more elegantly with their mobile-first lifestyles. Popular grievances include navigating circular IVR mazes, tasteful lift-music while waiting on hold for an undefined period of time, and having to repeat the same details with every new “hop” as they are transferred through a call centre.
For some of the most common customer service use cases, such as a simple password reset, it simply doesn’t make sense to involve a call centre. The customer’s mobile device can be validated to receive the password directly, in response to them sending an SMS. This has the added benefit of freeing up a call center’s agents to deal with the more complex support issues. Another great use case is utilising an SMS callback option where the customer simply texts in a keyword to request a service callback, and is notified immediately in how many minutes they will be contacted by a customer support agent. This gives the consumer a feeling of being in control, and reduces the number of people suffering from a lift-music overdose while on hold.
In the gambling industry, ID and age verification is critical. Enabling customers to send an inbound MMS photograph of a driver’s license to a short code or long number can quickly streamline the acquisition process. Using an SMS short code for acquisition such as a signup, first play or app download has the clear advantage that it takes seconds to trigger. Using a short code across media such as web, radio, TV, print, ambient and outdoor has shown to be a hugely effective combination time and time again.
SMS has another advantage over email for certain types of outbound messaging. Upwards of 95% of SMS messages are opened within four minutes of being received. While push notifications are arguably critical for app engagement (with studies demonstrating that 80% of app engagement is driven by them) SMS has an advantage over push notifications in that they can be 2-way.
TCE, its easy as 1, 2, 3
In today’s digitized, mobilized, and customer-driven economy, enterprises must define customer service more broadly. With the “word of mouth” channel bolstered by social media, mobile, and online reviews, and customers equipped to access all of them at any time of day, your service strategy must recognize your customers’ needs and wants throughout the whole lifecycle of your product or service.
The Total Customer Experience comprises many business processes and customer touch points, representing a multitude of possibilities and opportunities for crafting positive experiences that enable repeat sales and long-term loyalty.
If you would like to find out more about TCE, CEX, and how mobile is transforming customer experience, join me for a free webinar with TCM on Tuesday, January 20, 2015 11:00 AM EST / 8:00 AM PST: http://bit.ly/MobileCEX
In this one-hour webinar, you’ll learn how to fully integrate mobile messaging into your customer engagement processes, using a new approach to customer service. This webinar will share practical steps for designing new and differentiating experiences that will attract and retain customers. You will see real best practice examples of how OpenMarket customers have re-engineered specific touch points for mobile engagement.
Oisin Lunny Senior Market Development Manager OpenMarket