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Customer Service News & Analysis

What Not to Say: Words that Cost You Customers

help me

Everyone has a pet peeve about customer experience. Persistent pop-ups that ask annoyingly, "Need help?" Websites with music in their hearts.

Videos that start automatically. Hard to find contact information. Contact centers that make you wait on hold ... for what seems like forever. Intricate, thickly branched phone trees. Glitchy self-service kiosks.

It's a multichannel mess, more or less.

But nothing is more maddening — or more contrary to the whole philosophy of CXM — than scripted responses that lack even trace amounts of empathy, understanding or compassion. As customer experience researcher, innovator and entrepreneur John A. Goodman so clearly articulates, some things are better left unsaid.

What else would you expect to hear from the co-author of "Shut Your Mouth! Words and Phrases to Avoid in a Customer-Focused Service Environment"?

Are You Wasting Money on Customer Experience?

Are You Wasting Money on Customer Experience?Think about all you've invested in the latest digital technologies to improve customer experience (CX). Now think about this.

It might have been a big waste of time and money.

A new study by CX Act, a customer experience improvement firm, shows the most frequently used and most effective customer touch point is personal contact by phone. The study (registration required), which updates a study the company originally conducted for the White House in 1980, concludes:

While companies can’t ignore the need to offer a multichannel strategy and digital channels are likely to grow in importance (especially since younger consumers are more likely to use digital touch points), what matters NOW for creating an optimal customer contact experience is providing a phone or in-person customer interaction that delivers on the brand promise."

Contact Centers Drive the Social CRM Revolution

With more than 2 million Twitter accounts established every day, social media presents a host of new challenges and opportunities in the realm of customer relationship management (CRM). People are tweeting not only about their customer service needs but also the good, bad and ugly of the experience that they receive from companies.

According to evolve24, 70 percent of customer tweets to companies are being ignored -- and the damage can be significant. Gartner estimates that failure to respond via social channels can lead to an up to 15 percent increase in churn rate for existing customers.

News Bites: Updates from Brainshark, Xinet, Kenshoo and More

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A lot of news this week: Certain Inc. adds interests, Brainshark launches for Salesforce Work.com, Xinet gets OnFile, Kenshoo integrates with Oracle Social Cloud and Wix.com buys Appixia.com. 

Can Conversocial Improve Customer Service Experiences?

Conversocial customers

Conversocial, a cloud-based provider of social customer service software, is out with a major upgrade.

Called Conversations, it is designed to help companies manage social media comments from contact centers.

Joshua March, founder and CEO, told CMSWire that some companies use traditional ticketing systems, while others employ multi-channel contact center systems that "add social as just another channel" — as if it were email. But those systems, March said, are designed primarily for private, one-to-one inquiries or for marketing and PR-focused social media management.

The Future of Customer Service: Predictive, Personalized

The future of customer service is scary and rewarding at the same time. It's scary because the machine will know everything about you. It's rewarding because shopping will become much easier as the machine makes more decisions about your life.

How to Make Your Customers Love You This Valentine's Day

Play Matchmaker this Valentine's Between Customers and Contact Center AgentsAnyone who has dealt with a customer service representative knows it’s rarely a match made in heaven. In fact, it’s usually quite the opposite.

Between long hold times, mismatched agents and unresolved issues, it’s no wonder why most interactions with a company’s contact center get off to a rocky start. Neither party is totally at fault for this unhealthy relationship -- customers simply want their issues resolved in a timely fashion, and agents have few insights into the people and problems that they are expected to address.  

Too Many Customers, Too Few Customer Support Agents

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Stop patting yourselves on the backs for being so cutting-edge, up-to-date and in-the-know about the latest and greatest options to provide the best customer service.  

Customer satisfaction dropped globally by two percentage points in the last quarter of 2013 — apparently because too many businesses expect too much from too few people and shortchange their customers in the process.

At least that's the word from Zendesk, a provider of customer service and support ticket software. The company just released its latest Benchmark quarterly survey and the news overall isn’t good. 

4 Ways to Make Yammer a Better Workplace Tool

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Ever since Microsoft bought Yammer in June 2012 and announced plans to integrate it with SharePoint, there has been considerable interest in the social network and getting the most out of it. Now GoodData has entered the fray. It researched how companies use Yammer in the enterprise, and offers four suggestions for improvement.

Improving the Customer Support Experience

How do you know your customers are getting their problems solved quickly and easily? This is a question that has challenged many support websites. The traditional approach has tended to involve customer satisfaction and visitor volume metrics. 

What's the Customer Experience when Everything and Everyone Is Connected?

What's the Customer Experience when Everything and Everyone Is Connected?

As humans, we yearn for connection -- and while our tools will always change, the principles and desires that drive us stay the same. As our communications tools improved, the radius of our connections increased -- until the whole world was at our fingertips. Now, we are moving into a time when our connected devices are helping us connect to the world around us, in ways we couldn't dream of.

The 6 Pieces of the Customer Experience Puzzle

customer puzzle.jpgHow do you define customer experience -- and, more importantly, how do you create the best customer experience model? I started wondering about both concepts while working on an assignment to increase sales from the digital channel of a hospitality giant.

It seems like everyone is interested in the idea of “great customer experiences." But both businesses and scholars have struggled to understand what that really means, and have fared even worse at attempts to measure the outcomes of the "Customer Experience."

Bring the Internet of Things to Customer Service and Support

Bring the Internet of Things to Service and SupportThe Internet of Things promises to make everything that everyone owns Internet enabled. But many of the reasons for doing so -- such as collecting data on customers or marketing to customers when they are doing most anything -- are kind of creepy. Who wants every interaction with everyday items tracked by faceless companies? That’s what scientists do with the animals they study.

But one area shows potential for making the Internet of Things work for the customer: service and support

A Look Back: The Evolution of Social Media in 2013

Social media. It seems like yesterday it was just a fad, something naysayers insisted would never catch on. Now, look at it — all grown up, attracting more users than ever and worth billions of dollars. In 2013, social media evolved faster and further, turning itself into a viable platform that influences what we do and how we share. 

Resolve to Upgrade Your Web Tech for Better Customer Experiences [Infographic]

It's that time of year when companies start planning for the new year.  As they look back on the past 12 months, for every goal met, there are many left unfulfilled. It's not uncommon for companies to operate "in the now" — reacting to the market and digital trends that present themselves. But wouldn't it be nice if you had the time to adequately prepare for the road ahead so your teams could work proactively? Why not make some resolutions now that will help everyone work smarter in 2014?

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