The pandemic has once again brought to fore the importance of one-to-one interactions between customers and businesses at a local level. From a customer standpoint, people need to know who they are interacting with before they make major purchasing decisions. There needs to be a certain level of trust and comfort between the customer and the frontline staff member, something that can happen only after one-to-one conversations. From an enterprise standpoint, the equation is simple – one-to-one interactions drive customer engagement which in turn, drives sales.
But, as foolproof as this process sounds, it's not so straightforward to influence change.
While enterprise retail isn't going away anytime soon, the way customers interact with enterprise retailers is undergoing a massive transformation. People are preferring to buy local from vendors they know and trust. This leaves retailers with a massive opportunity to up their customer loyalty game. By meeting customers on platforms they are most comfortable with and by building relationships that go beyond transactional promotions, they can leverage messaging to foster a customer experience that drives more loyalty.
Identifying interaction points
Current marketing strategies at enterprises are based on what worked best for the last few years -some of which is rarely challenged. To adapt to changing customer behaviors, businesses will have to focus on adopting an omnichannel customer outreach strategy. This means taking a pragmatic approach to determine what the customer lifecycle looks like and then identifying different types of interactions to have with the customer during that journey. Isolating these interaction points will help define the type of messaging strategy and the communication channel for the organization. In the context of telco, Statflo recommended touchpoints in a post-paid world are:
i) Welcome touchpoint: 30 days post purchase
ii) Check-in: Midway through their contract
iii) Renewal: Before the customer is up for renewal
Finding the balance between different channels
The success of integrating an omnichannel customer outreach approach depends on multiple factors. Enterprises need to strike the balance between different types of messaging. They need to identify when generic messaging will work best and when there is a need to interact with individual customers on a one-to-one basis. The right type of messaging at the right time on the right channel is essential to reach the end goal of increasing sales. Another critical part contributing to the success of the omnichannel customer outreach approach is the efficiency of the frontline staff. The frontline is the champion of your brand. They need to be empowered with suitable processes, armed with the correct tech, and trained in the right way.
Keeping it Compliant
While implementing conversational messaging between an enterprise and its customers, compliance is key. The best way to reduce legal exposure and minimize risk is to use a business text messaging platform that upholds strict standards of data privacy. At Statflo, we are SOC 2 Type II compliant, which means we enforce air-tight procedures for handling sensitive customer data. We have complete controls around who and what systems can access it. Additionally, our smart filtering ensures brand compliance by validating if the conversations from your frontline retail team match your brand standards and tone.
Choosing a flexible messaging solution
The final piece of omnichannel customer messaging is to go for a messaging solution that is agile and gives customer-facing employees complete visibility into relevant customer data. The solution provider has to have the ability to integrate with pre-existing enterprise systems and create hyper-specific outreach campaigns. Even the best system will fail if all stakeholders aren’t bought in and all data points are not considered. Flexibility is essential to smooth implementation and eventual success of a one-to-one messaging program.
Change in large enterprises doesn't happen overnight. But, one thing that this crisis has shown is when change is forced upon us, we have the ability to adapt. All of a sudden, the inertia that once held a business back from implementing change, dissipates. If the goal is to improve customer loyalty and drive sales, a multi-faceted effort is needed. Enterprises need to stay abreast of CX trends, leverage the right technology, and have an in-depth understanding of the modern buyer and the modern customer journey.