The Customer Is The Channel

The customer-centric blog of Linc Global

4 Steps for Integrating Customer Care Automation Into Your Marketing Strategy

As featured in Destination CRM The era of noreply@brand.com is over—and the time for automated, conversational communications has arrived. Today’s consumers expect more from their most loved brands, and companies must evolve to deliver real-time engagement that satisfies customer needs and wants. Eighty percent of consumers say no retailer or service provider has ever sent them a communication that felt overly personal. Just look at L’Oréal. When it launched its Makeup Genius app, customers didn’t cry foul at facial recognition. Instead, they leapt at the opportunity to engage with the brand in that way, demonstrating that audiences are hungry for personalized experiences that add value beyond the product itself. Automated communications have often sounded cold and impersonal. For example, the typical abandoned cart email tries to be relevant, but it frequently sounds like it was written to a mass audience, or the timing is a little off. To connect with customers, brands must find harmony in timeliness, relevance, and ease of use. Whether that harmony comes through traditional email or newer channels like SMS texting, web chat, or in-home voice assistance, personalized automation is the future of better customer experiences.

Customer Experience as the New Competitive Battleground

Buying and selling online began in earnest in the ‘90s. In 1995, the year Amazon and eBay both started, the internet existed as 120,000 registered domain names. Over the next three years it grew to more than two million. Now, more than a billion websites are online. Ecommerce has also expanded by leaps and bounds. In 2006, ecommerce accounted for approximately 3% of total US retail sales. So far this year, it’s approaching 10% and represents an almost 15% year-over-year increase compared to 2016.

Conversational Commerce is the Future and the Present

Chris Messina, who helped to popularize the term and is the Developer Experience Lead at Uber, declared “2016 will be the year of conversational commerce.” What he predicted back in early 2015 has now become a reality -- leading brands are already capitalizing on these channels and leaving their competitors behind. What does that mean for your brand? When you master conversational commerce, you’ll deliver experiences that make your customers feel as if you hired a personal assistant to help each of them. “Not only do companies today need to exceed customer expectations, but they need to make it easy for the customer to do business with the company,” writes Forbes’ Blake Morgan. “Want a powerful customer experience? Simply ask yourself how easy you can make life for your customers.”

The Future is Automation- How to Deploy Customer Care Automation as a Complement to Existing Post-Purchase Solutions

The rules of customer engagement have changed.  There is greater expectation on timeliness of resolution, personalization of service, convenience of channels, availability and willingness of a brand to engage in a real-time 2-way conversation. Notifications, no-reply email addresses and delayed email support don’t meet customer expectations of a brand’s readiness to help them if they have a question or want more information. Beyond information, many consumers want to be a part of their favorite brands, and feel heard, beyond sharing a comment on social media.  In this post we discuss how brands need to automate their customer care solutions in order to keep up with the ever-changing customer expectations.

Press Release: CUTS Clothing Automates the Customer Experience

CUTS Clothing Automates the Customer Experience with Linc Global's AI Customer Care Automation Platform  Through Linc’s platform, CUTS Clothing now offers automated solutions for anywhere, anytime customer care and engagement

New Feature Alert: Consultative Buying Botlet

The evolution of automated customer care goes well beyond the post-purchase experience.  Automated customer service is more than just questions about order tracking, return information, and product details.  Customers also have questions about finding what they are looking for and which products are right for them. Without automation, all of these questions add more work and time for your customer service reps, or the questions go unanswered and customers go elsewhere

Using Enriched Data to Enhance Automation, Marketing, eCommerce and Operations Programs

As the customer’s preferences and means of communication change, so does the amount data and tracking we have about customers preferences.  Beyond the clear business impacts on important KPIs, a brand sees a large improvement in customer data - both in richness and availability. With an automated customer care solution, brands can use automated assistants to easily use this data to engage customers and increase sales.  

New Feature Alert: Product Inspiration Botlet

As consumers want more and more 1:1 communication with brands, a large strain takes hold on your customer service teams and the overall business.  Many brands are finding the key to alleviating these pains is to automate the process as much as possible. One key difficulty with this becomes how to best leverage basic automated interactions and ensure you are providing your customers with all the information they need when they want it.

The Evolution of Customer Care Automation

Since the first checkouts appeared online more than 20 years ago, the best-in-class standards in customer experience have changed significantly, from improving access to product catalogs, to enhancing the communication around purchases, and today, into the multichannel, integrated efforts orchestrated between marketing, ecommerce and customer care teams.

Press Release: PureFormulas Automates Customer Engagement with Linc Global

PureFormulas Automates Customer Engagement with Linc Global's AI Customer Care Automation Platform  Through Linc’s platform, PureFormulas now offers automated solutions for anywhere, anytime customer care and engagement messaging across channels including SMS and Facebook Messenger

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