At Teleperformance, we’re often asked about the road map to a holistic solution for potential customers.
Omnichannel! How long does it take, what it will cost, and how much effort is required? Unfortunately, this approach presupposes that an Omnichannel strategy is pre-packaged and can be tailored and tweaked and that pretty much one size or approach will fit most organizations embarking on their digital journey. Not so simple.
So let’s start at the start – what is Omnichannel and why is this term generating such an interest and buzz when it comes to discussions about customer behavior and expectations? Omnichannel is about true continuity of customer engagement. Look at the definition of omniscient from which Omnichannel is derived – simply put it means perceiving and understanding all things. And the best way for a customer to understand things is to allow them to own their data and experience, then give them the ability to use it to guide creation and context of every future experience.
Therefore, what we do at Teleperformance is assist our clients to facilitate a continuous experience for their customers across brands, across devices and across channels – customers want to engage in the most convenient way they can and via a medium which appeals to their preferences.
Teleperformance works with over 50% of the most recognized brands in the world according to a recent Interbrand survey. Partnering with these organizations provides Teleperformance with tremendous insights into customer behaviours and preferences. By looking at variables such as gender, country, age, industry, channels, etc Teleperformance created a Customer Experience Lab (CX Lab) to analyze this data to provide strategic insights that eventually become powerful business tools to drive a holistic customer experience strategy.
Simply put, today’s consumers are more empowered, connected and informed. Our Global CX studies attest to this fact and that social media and mobility have changed the channels, devices and methods consumers choose to use. If organizations expect to engage these consumers they’re going to have to meet them in the channels and media where consumer are making decisions about buying.
What is abundantly clear from our CX Lab analysis is that companies must consider segmentation by generation in order to design a more effective, personalized customer experience rather than a one size fits all approach. Take a look at the following chart:
So what does providing customers with the bespoke means to engage in an Omnichannel environment translate to? According to a Teleperformance proprietary Global CX survey, customer service attributes are responsible for 43% of customer brand advocacy and 47% of customer loyalty. What are consumers looking for that can promote advocacy? Ease of communication (multi-channel), speed of resolution, professionalism and empathy – sometimes a challenge in a non-voice environment which calls for a new paradigm of thought with respect to customer service training.
Research from Forrester further highlights the challenge. In a study titled, “Customer Desires vs. Retailer Capabilities: Minding the Omnichannel Commerce Gap”, research found that,
“Retailers view Omnichannel maturity as a key brand differentiator for their companies, and improving their ability to provide customers with a seamless shopping experience across all channels as a top priority but that 94% of retail decision-makers surveyed said that their companies face significant barriers to becoming an integrated Omnichannel company.”
What are these barriers? What makes it difficult for customers to implement a cohesive, holistic and robust Ominchannel strategy? Based on our experience with global customers, Teleperformance has discovered these 3 common obstacles:
1. Lack of alignment to overall business strategy: How does one move from product centricity to customer centricity? Do we know our customers’ emotional and rational preferences and how they want to engage with us? How do we move from building a homogenous customer experience approach to one which embraces the fact that each consumer is different and not every channel is relevant or appropriate for a consumer?
2. Lack of data – we don’t know really know how a customers want to interact with us. We’ve never conducted a Voice of Customer survey. In a number of global Omnichannel engagements Teleperformance has deployed consumer analytics deliver data and reporting necessary to design and mature an Omnichannel strategy. Identifying the most salient and actionable performance measures is often a difficult task. Organizations that best acquire Omnichannel data, use that data to interpret customer preferences and act upon that personalized information will see tangible results in the form of brand advocacy and customer loyalty.
3. Absence of a CRM Platform and Technology Enablers – Time and time again in Omnichannel engagements we have seen the criticality of being able to deliver the right content or knowledge to the consumer, through the right engagement point, as well as maintain engagement continuity while seamlessly moving across touchpoints and channels. As the number of consumer interaction channels expand so do consumer expectations for personalized delivery and consistent experiences across all channels and touch points.
Do you know me? How well do you understand my preferences? Do you know how I want to engage with you today?
In conclusion, if the Omnichannel landscape looks as complex as this diagram how do organizations ensure their Omnichannel journey is a successful one?
To implement a successful Omnichannel strategy, an organization needs to determine the key actions that customers perform throughout their engagement experience, and then let them accomplish those tasks across multiple channels.
Omnichannel isn’t just about selling across multiple channels; it’s also about letting the customer do whatever it is they need to do throughout their journey no matter what device or platform they’re on.
How has your experience with Omichannel been? Please share your experiences / thoughts.