4 ways smartphones deliver Modern Customer Experience! | DMA

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4 ways smartphones deliver Modern Customer Experience!


Just a decade or so ago, people were used to a limited number of communication channels, centring on face-to-face meetings, letters, telephone calls and, over time, email. This multichannel environment took a consistent form, usually only focusing on one or two channels in their own silos, which meant brands could be fairly comfortable that all bases could be easily covered if their customers wanted to get in touch.

Fast forward to the present day and you see a very different picture, with a new generation of customer interaction being spearheaded by the modern customer. We’ve gone from a predictable set of communication channels to a tidal wave of fresh platforms such as Twitter, WhatsApp and Instagram, with smartphones making it easy for them to be created and abandoned at an increasingly rapid pace.

We have a new generation of customer interaction, with a fluid evolution of communication platforms, expecting brands to be able to follow suit. If not, they could well abandon those brands which fail to interact on their terms.

Here are four areas brands can focus on to take advantage of the latest developments in communication technologies and give a seamless customer experience:

Location-based technology – Retailers such as River Island could use this to save customers a trip to the store, for instance by allowing them to take a photo of a faulty item and send to a brand through a Twitter Direct Message. They could then be connected to a live chat session with somebody at the nearest store, a webchat or video chat that makes use of the front-facing camera most smartphones are now equipped with.

WhatsApp and other messaging apps – With mobile messaging in the past, brands felt limited by the fact that SMS communication had to take place in batches. Those days are gone, and brands must now take advantage of the easy, cost efficient technology such as WhatsApp. The platform has played a big part in the growth of voice note functionality, making it a part of everyday communication; there’s a great opportunity here for the travel industry to get in on the act. Airlines like EasyJet could save time and resolve situations faster with an exchange of voice notes with customers wherever they are in the world. Increasing numbers of everyday communications are taking place using them, so brands need to follow suit.

Personal customer service agents – Couriers such as Yodel often provide consumers with the agent’s name and mobile phone number, so that they can be called, texted and even sent WhatsApp messages. This can prove extremely convenient for both the consumer and the courier because it adds a much-needed dose of flexibility into the mix. For example, they could send a message from a delayed commute home advising the courier they will miss a previously arranged delivery slot, with the courier responding to find out whether the item could be left with a nearby friend, or book a later delivery slot.

QR Codes – Despite initial interest when they were first introduced, the noise around QR Codes has significantly fallen in recent years. But FMCG businesses could find them invaluable; imagine being inside an ASDA store with a question to ask but being faced with lengthy queues and tied-up customer service assistants. An app could allow the consumer to take a picture of a QR code on a product and conduct a webchat/video chat with a customer service agent instead could easily solve the problem.

The new generation of customer service interaction is constantly evolving, and brands must move with the times. True, brands might have been comfortable using just a select few platforms to communicate in the past, but standing still means you will be left behind. It’s do or die: brands need to stand up and be counted as they approach the checkout, or face being sent to the back of the queue.

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