Have you ever responded to a message from a business – an action they’ve requested – only to reach someone who has no idea why you’re calling? As a customer, it’s frustrating. As a business it’s costly – impacting both the bottom line and customer satisfaction. Today, consumers expect their time to be valued and demand effortless, intuitive experiences. But what happens when communication silos get in the way? Let’s explore a customer service pitfall familiar to many travelers and discover how connected conversations make all the difference.
Let’s explore a common pitfall that frustrates many travelers – and one that all businesses should strive to avoid.
Can you relate to this ‘if only’ encounter? Responded to a call or message from a business – an action they’ve requested – only to find yourself speaking to someone who has no idea why you’re calling? Inevitably you find yourself frustrated with the process.
And, that frustration only increases if you’ve confronted a complex phone menu or are transferred and have to repeat your explanation. This disjointed experience not only annoys consumers, it’s costly for businesses. The ability to connect conversations between channels and across your organization is key to avoiding this particular BizMisconnect.
Delta Air Lines has taken a holistic approach to their interactions with passengers – offering a contextually aware experience by informing their inbound call center system with knowledge of recent notifications about gate changes, flight delays or other trip-related information. Creating a connected conversation has delivered real results. After just five months of operating with an integrated self-service strategy, Delta received great feedback from passengers and generated real cost savings for the business.
Delta serves more than 165 million customers annually and is committed to keeping passengers informed about their flights – sending over 19 million voice, email and text notifications each year. In fact, at one time, it was possible for a passenger to be aware of circumstances affecting their travel before word had reached the reservations specialists in the contact center.
Back then, Delta’s outbound notifications were siloed from their call center systems – leaving the airline’s reservations staff and their IVR disconnected from the communications going to passengers. If one of more than fifty thousand notifications sent on average each day resulted in an inbound call, Delta’s specialists would need to confirm the passenger’s circumstances before they could assist them. To their credit, Delta recognized an opportunity to create a smoother customer experience and were committed to finding a solution.
Our “frustrated traveler” scenario is not unique to the airline industry. Everyday, consumers find themselves annoyed by the disjointed service experiences they encounter when engaging their banks, pharmacies, cable providers and more. In almost every B2C organization, there’s an opportunity to follow Delta’s example and break down the silos between outbound and inbound conversations to create a consistent, meaningful customer experience. Be sure to check back as we explore other BizMisconnect scenarios in the coming months.
Lynn leads the solutions and channel marketing efforts for the Nuance Enterprise Division. She enjoys engaging with customers, learning about their businesses, listening closely to understand their challenges, and exploring how they are optimizing their customer care experiences. Lynn has spent more than 20 years working at the intersection of marketing and innovation. She’s a veteran of several venture-backed companies in the telecommunications, software, Internet and clean technology industries.