Top Customer Communications Management Trends to Look Out For

Two people shaking hands over a desk
Len Smofsky Apr 16 ,2020

Is your business staying on top of the market’s top-level customer communication trends?

Improving your customers’ experience through effective communication management has been proven to increase retention, satisfaction, and revenue. That said, it’s important to keep in mind that customers are smarter than they used to be and value their experiences with brands.

In a recently released report, one-third of customers said that they wouldn’t hesitate switching companies after a bad customer service experience. For brands looking to stay on top of the competition, stats like this means working even harder to ensure you are doing everything you can to keep your customers happy. Without the benefits of effective customer communications management, your business will struggle to survive in an ever-changing customer-centric environment.

Not connecting with your customers in a way that’s aligned with their preferences means you risk losing them. And generic, scripted responses will only take you so far.

Brands have no choice but to evolve and upgrade their approach to customer communications to stay current on trends that are shaping customer management. One of the best ways to create exceptional customer experience is by implementing top-level customer communication management strategies.

A woman on her phone

Get Customer Communication Management Right: 5 Trends for 2020

To provide excellent customer services, you will need to invest in and implement strategies that will get you the results you’re looking for. But where do you begin?

Successful companies use different communication channels to engage with customers effectively. Here are five industry trends that businesses are adopting to improve their customer communications.

1. Personalized Communications Solutions

For years, Dell Computers invited customers to ‘build’ computers by choosing various individual specifications. Through this type of personalized experience, Dell was able to build a successful and long-term growth strategy. Similarly, Adidas and NIKE provided their customers with the opportunity to design their own shoes. This significantly positioning these two brands ahead of other industry competition.

So why did this work?

Customers are getting smarter, and have demonstrated that they prefer being treated as individuals rather than a customer. It’s a similar feeling to when a person remembers and refers to you by name. It makes you feel acknowledged, accepted, and familiar.

Therefore, personalized customer care is key for organizations looking to build a strong brand and keep their clients continually happy. Brands who understand this have found success in implementing customer communication approaches such as personalized videos to cost-effectively scale customized customer care as well as create engaging visual content.

Unlike generic video, interactive and personalized video allows you to communicate information that is tailored to a customer’s specific needs and wants, while also providing your brand with rich details about customer interests and intents from increased customer engagement. Your business is missing out if you still haven’t implemented video personalization in your communication strategy.

2. Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning for Insightful Data Analytics

It’s important for businesses to understand and keep track of customer preferences. It not only provides incredible insights into their customer base, but enables them to implement customized customer experiences accordingly.

However, it can be tricky for companies to keep on top of user preferences without the necessary tools and analytics to help identify what channels are the most successful in reaching customers. To solve this, businesses are using analytics engines powered by artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML) algorithms. They equip companies with the proper tools to monitor and analyze customer actions, gather insights, and predict specific customer needs.

AI as technology enables a machine to imitate intelligent human behaviour based on rules and algorithms. ML, on the other hand, is a field of AI that provides systems with the ability to learn from data and generate insights that would otherwise not be known. The two are hot topics making their mark in many fields, and customer communication management is no exception. In CCM, these technologies are being employed to enable effective business communication automation and play a crucial part in building smarter communications systems for today’s digital landscape.

For example, rather than having customers wait in line for an agent to become free, AI-powered engines such as conversation bots that can automatically handle common customer cases. It provides brands with innovative new ways of automatically providing immediate customer care, saving time and brand resources. Chatbots are evolving each day, and can be programmed to interact and integrate with a wide variety of applications, ultimately serving the customers (and sales funnel) in a more efficient and personalized way.

On the metrics and reporting side of business, AI-powered analytics help identify what channels are the most successful in reaching customers efficiently. By ensuring an intelligent use of data is deployed, brands can demonstrate to customers that they know them, understand what they want, and can cater to their needs. The Insights panel in Google Analytics is the perfect example of this.

3. Equipping Teams with the Right Tools and Assessing the Quality of Your Communications

The right tools for measuring customer communication effectiveness can help your customer service teams be more efficient at handling client requests. Whether a customer contacts your business via phone or chat, your customer service agent should be able to promptly pull up any relevant data. This may include the customer’s purchase history or any other recent interactions with your brand.

Companies on the forefront employ Live Chat, Help Desk, Ticketing Systems, as well as Customer Relationship Management tools to store and manage customer information. By capturing customer information, a brand can provide its customer communication team with a way to access specific customer issues without the client having to go through the painful process of describing their problem a second time.

Cartoon characters connected by dotted lines to represent social media connectivity

4. Pay Attention to Social Media

Social Media has no doubt become an integral medium for communicating with clients. Brands that are effectively using these platforms are reaping the benefits.

Not only can social media drive traffic to a brand’s website, but customers also see it as an effective channel for customer service. A growing number of existing and potential clients now use it to engage with brands regarding posted content, concerns, and service-related queries.

While many businesses are aware of the importance and value of social media, some never take the time to strategically align these platforms with their customer communication strategy. If your business has yet to take advantage of enhancing customer communication and developing customer experience strategies for social platforms, you’ll be left behind. Enhance your customer communication through a robust social media strategy.

A CRM Land article from 2019 states that customers who have a positive experience on social media with a brand are 71% more likely to make a purchase with them. Ensure you personalize each interaction you have with your customers on every social network. At minimum, a brand should be doing the following daily on each active platform:

  • Respond to post replies in a timely fashion
  • Use the customer’s name
  • Respond to private/direct messages

Creating such personalized and positive experiences for your customers strengthens brand love and develops long-lasting customer relationships — a vital goal of any CCM strategy in 2020.

5. Leverage Video Content to Engage Customers

Are you using video content to connect with customers? If you’re not by now, you’re in the minority.

Video content is now the most widely consumed form of digital media. Customers prefer to receive information through video as opposed to traditional images or text. As a result, video marketing has become so effective that some companies have reported an 8x improvement on click-through rates with a personalized video compared to standard email campaigns.

Videos enhance both customer communication and collaboration, helping to sustain and drive new business. Additionally, videos don’t have to be lengthy in order to be effective. An onboarding video may need to be long, but for video marketing to be successful, short and punchy works great.

The Future of Customer Communications Management

The way you handle your customers can be the difference between your brand growing or stagnating. If you’re still using outdated CCM trends, you won’t be able to effectively reach new customers.

It’s time to make a plan and act. Leverage these top five unbeatable customer communications management trends for 2020 to take your communications strategy to the next level and ensure lasting CCM success in the future.

Apply these high-end customer communications management approaches to help you enhance your customer engagement and experiences. Doing so will boost your business reputation, help you connect with your customers on a deep level, building trust and loyalty, and ultimately help you achieve more growth and productivity.

About the author: Len Smofsky

Len Smofsky

Len has over 25 years of experience in visual communications and strategy. Over the last decade his focus has been primarily in the digital area.

Specializing in corporate communications, Len founded one of Canada’s most successful production companies. His company created leading edge video production, TV commercials, digital strategy and media.

In 2006, Len and Larry formed a partnership to create a new BlueRush with the intent of creating personalized customer experiences using a unique blend of digital media and deep technology capabilities. BlueRush works with clients in the financial services, healthcare and packaged goods industries leveraging current digital technologies and services, creating great user experiences at all points in the customer journey.

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