Consumers are getting used to a personalized world. Whether it is Amazon’s Alexa reading tailored news and local weather information aloud or Facebook’s News Feed prioritizing the stories its algorithm knows the user prefers, many of the interactions people now have with technology on a day-to-day basis are tailored to them. It’s no wonder then that consumers also expect the same of their interactions with brands. Thankfully, the same technology is making it possible for brands to meet those demands and deliver personalization at scale through automation.
Research bears out the shift in consumer expectations, especially among digital natives. Half of millennials expect brands to customize their offerings, according to an American Express study. It also found that millennials will go out of their way to take advantage of personalized offers. A separate report by Rare: Insights about brand loyalty found that 52% of millennials and 54% of the subsequent Generation K say they value the personalized experiences that brands to whom they are loyal provide.
But personalization doesn’t just matter when the consumer is thinking about making a purchase. It goes beyond including a person’s email in an offer to the entire customer experience. Consumers expect individualized support throughout the buying and use cycle. When it comes to support, customers expect that the agent they speak to will know about their previous history with the company. In a global survey of consumers by InMoment, personalized support beat out personalized purchases and targeted advertising as the top priority, meaning that customer support professionals and agents must be equipped to offer consumers a customized experience.
Automation is a key way of achieving personalization at scale. Not only does it allow brands to simplify order processes and tracking, it can make it possible for customer service professionals to easily look up all relevant past data when interacting with a customer and have a 360-degree view of the customer’s needs.
Chatbots can also automate data look-ups of account information as well as data collection that can be used to tailor the service experience through messaging platforms – an increasingly important way that consumers communicate with brands. More than 2.5 billion people worldwide use messaging platforms, and they are becoming the norm in how conversations with brands are conducted as well.
What’s key is focusing on the customer experience: Forcing customers to go through an automated process or rely on a specific mode of communication can cause frustration. The customers’ preferences and needs should drive how automation is implemented. Offer online phone and online chat solutions to meet customers where they prefer, so that technology can enhance – rather than be an obstacle – to the support a customer needs. The right automation tools can help customer service agents provide a highly customized and efficient solution while meeting expectations in an increasingly personalized world.
Learn more about Bold360 and how its intelligent engagement solution can help you reach your customers with personalized experiences.