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This article contains a collection of 50 highly popular articles that appeared on the internet in the first quarter of 2019. Our curators had a gala time picking the best of the lot and we are very happy to present it to customer-obsessed leaders like yourself in the form of a handy eBook for ease of reading. We hope that these resources will offer interesting insights about various customer strategies as we progress into 2019. Enjoy reading!

Customer Retention:

Every organization understands the necessity of winning new business but makes the mistake of just focusing on it, and forgetting the importance of customer retention. According to Gartner, 65% of a company’s business comes from existing customers. So it makes sense to build a healthy business model with solid investment in retention strategy.

Following are a few popular articles on customer retention, which our curators found on the internet in 2019  .

Customer Lifetime Value:

The importance of customer lifetime value has been understated for a long time. Marketers have been writing about how important knowing CLV is for years, and it’s still being ignored or underutilized. A 2018 UK study found that only 34% of the marketers they surveyed were completely aware of the term and its connotations; and only 24% of respondents felt their company was monitoring CLV effectively.

Customer Winback:

Marketers spend a lot of time and money trying to find new customers to replace the ones they lost. But, think why customer’s leave and what can you do to reignite their interest in your brand, so that they stay and continue to purchase from you. A report from the HBR explains why it’s a good idea to win back lost customers instead of letting them go.

Customer Experience:

Downplaying the importance of customer experience is no longer an option for businesses, as the voice of the customer continues to get louder. Purchasers are empowered like never before, and great customer experience drives loyalty and revenue. Recent findings by the Temkin Group found out that companies that earn $1 billion annually can expect to earn an additional $700 million within 3 years of investing in customer experience.

Customer Service:

In an era where companies are learning to prioritize customer service, any company that doesn’t do so will crash and burn. In fact, Deloitte & Touche found that companies that are customer-centric are 60% more profitable.

We hope that these handpicked resources will offer you fresh insights on the best practices, tips, and techniques as you plan your customer strategy for 2019.

Click the below image to download the Article in PDF format.

The post 50 Handpicked Resources for Customer Retention Leaders – April 2019 Edition appeared first on VOZIQ.

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Reston, VA (4 Apr 2018)- VOZIQ, an enterprise cloud-based application solution provider that enables recurring revenue businesses to drive large-scale predictive customer retention programs, announced the launch of its new eXplainable AI (XAI) product ‘Agent Connect’ to help businesses enhance proactive retention capabilities of their most critical resource – customer retention agents.

‘Agent Connect’ is VOZIQ’s newest product powered by next-generation eXplainable AI (XAI) that brings together multiple retention risk signals with expressed and inferred needs, sentiment, churn drivers and behaviors that lead to attrition of customers discovered directly from millions of customer interactions by analyzing unstructured and structured customer data, and converts insights those into easy-to-act, prescriptive intelligence about predicted health for any customer.

It is specifically designed to help the agents visualize the health of a customer on a call, understand related risks and opportunities, and make informed, split-second decisions about the most cost-effective options to proactively engage the customer in order to reduce churn risk and improve profitability.

“Agent Connect is the answer to the challenge that every retention leader faces: How to make an entire customer-facing operation aware of opportunities and risk associated with customer health”– Dr. Vasudeva Akula (Chief Data Scientist and Co-founder , VOZIQ)

‘Agent Connect’ takes advantage of a unique use case when an at-risk customer—who has voluntarily initiated a contact—is routed through the IVR to a skilled retention agent based on predicted health score. Here, the agent’s awareness and options are further augmented with easy-to-act information about key dimensions of the customer health. This interaction leads to a dramatically improved retention of an at-risk customer.

“Democratization of churn risk intelligence is one of the biggest lost opportunities for recurring revenue enterprises. Unlike many ‘black box’ AI products in market, VOZIQ’s ‘Agent Connect’ brings transparency and actionability with eXplainable AI (XAI) right at the point of impact, and delivers real business benefits in the form of improved customer lifetime value (CLV),” said Dr. Vasudeva Akula.

‘Agent Connect’ is part of operational interventions designed within VOZIQ’s Predictive Customer Retention Solution to optimize retention touchpoints and drive large-scale, proactive retention actions at the point of impact.

In the backend, ‘Agent Connect’ is powered by VOZIQ’s suite that is composed of a NLP (natural language processing) engine and machine learning models that analyze unstructured and structured data to decipher what customers are saying and doing (directional intent), and AI that delivers insightful and accurate predictions about a range of retention KPIs such as churn propensity, NPS risk, cancel reason, price sensitivity, product affinity and so on. VOZIQ’s Secure Connect API then feeds this predictive intelligence back into points of impact such as IVR and Agent Desktops.

‘Agent Connect’ thus allows millions of proactive and targeted retention actions on a continuous basis, instead of relying solely on channels such as surveys and email marketing to increase the overall retention rates.

Like a patient health card, ‘Agent Connect’ presents health of a customer relationship in an easy-to-act format with rich visualizations, such as gauges, word clouds and colored indicators, and turns every customer care interaction with an at-risk customer into a proactive retention conversation. The standard ‘Agent Connect’ parameters include:

  • Churn risk level
  • NPS risk level
  • Likely Cancellation Reason
  • Word Cloud visualizing most recurring risk signals from lifetime interactions history to help the agent know the risk context at a glance
  • eXplainable AI (XAI) that reveals ‘red’ and ‘green’ signals on various risk drivers

‘Agent Connect’ is available as part of VOZIQ’s Cloud-based Predictive Customer Retention Solution and will be released to all existing customers over next few weeks. The solution is fully customizable and can also be plugged into existing CRM Systems such as Salesforce, SAP, Microsoft, Oracle etc.

“We are excited about potential of ‘Agent Connect’ for recurring revenue businesses from Telecom, Deregulated Utilities, Home Security and Insurance industries,” said Doug Shapiro (Chief Sales Officer ,VOZIQ)

“Our marquee customers are already using ‘Agent Connect’ Beta, and have seen dramatic improvements in the mitigation of cancellation risk. With Agent Connect, these companies are now reaching a significantly higher number of at-risk customers sooner in a far more effective manner,” he further added.

The post VOZIQ Launches ‘Agent Connect,’ an Explainable AI Product to Enable Large-Scale Customer Retention Programs appeared first on VOZIQ.

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VOZIQ’s AI/ML-Based Predictive Customer Retention Solution Wins 2019 Product of the Year Award

Reston, VA (27 Mar 2019) — VOZIQ, a leading provider of Cloud-based Actionable AI Solutions for Predictive Customer Retention to recurring revenue businesses, announced today that TMC, a global, integrated media company, has named VOZIQ’s Predictive Customer Retention Solution as one of the winners of the prestigious 2019 CUSTOMER Product of the Year Award, presented by CUSTOMER magazine.

According to TMC Award selection committee, the winners represent prominent players in the market who consistently demonstrate applicability of advanced technologies, such as AI and machine learning, to solve real business problems. Each recipient is a verifiable leader in the marketplace.

“We’ve been keenly listening to its customers and have been innovating at a rapid pace to maximize the value our customers get by leveraging new data sources, especially unstructured data from contact center logs, and time-series data generated by product usage and system issues, and continue to fuse them with traditional structured data to realize differential value,” said Suresh Akula, CTO and cofounder of VOZIQ. “We are delighted to be recognized by TMC for our predictive AI innovation and customer retention expertise.”

What sets VOZIQ’s solution apart from other customer retention solutions is the use of multiple predictive models powered by AI/ML and precisely tuned to individual stages of the customer lifecycle. Unlike many other solutions that stop at insight, VOZIQ goes one step further to turn insight into action by blending predictive intelligence into contact center and marketing operations using explainable AI technologies.

“With 100+ years of combined experience of working with large subscription businesses, we have been able to respond quickly to the changing needs of our customers. ‘2019 Product of the Year Award’ is a testament to our understanding of revenue risks in recurring revenue enterprises and the operational priorities of executives in these businesses,” said Akula.

VOZIQ’s Predictive Customer Retention Solution can be implemented either on-premise or as a Cloud-based solution with pre-built text analytics, risk driver libraries and predictive ML models that significantly cut time-to-value in industries such as Home Security and Automation, Deregulated Utilities, Telecom, and Insurance.

About VOZIQ

VOZIQ is the only cloud-based predictive retention solution provider that enables recurring revenue businesses boost their retention rate by 10% within 1 year by leveraging structured and unstructured enterprise customer data, text analytics and AI-powered predictive churn models.

About CUSTOMER magazine

Since 1982, CUSTOMER magazine (formerly Customer Interaction Solutions) has been the voice of the call/contact center, CRM and teleservices industries. CUSTOMER magazine includes news and insights on the latest developments in agent training, analytics, ERP, IVR, social CRM solutions, mobile apps, workforce management and more. Please visit http://customer.tmcnet.com for more information.

About TMC

Through education, industry news, live events and social influence, global buyers rely on TMC’s content-driven marketplaces to make purchase decisions and navigate markets. As a result, leading technology vendors turn to TMC for unparalleled branding, thought leadership and lead generation opportunities.

VOZIQ Contact:
Ganesh Kulkarni
Director, Product Marketing
(888) 427-2328,
gkulkarni@voziq.com

VOZIQ, 11951 Freedom Drive, 13th Floor, Reston, Virginia, 20190, U.S.A.
https://voziq.com

TMC Contact:
Jessica Seabrook
Marketing Director
203-852-6800,
jseabrook@tmcnet.com

The post VOZIQ Receives 2019 Product of the Year Award appeared first on VOZIQ.

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Regardless of their relentless efforts, brands across industries suffer from churn problems in today’s competitive world. As shown in the image below, one of the major reasons why customers leave the company turns out to be poor customer service.

What is wrong with customer service today?

According to research by SQM Group, 86% of customers expect their issue to be resolved on the first call, which isn’t happening. Each time a customer has to call back because their prior issue was not resolved, customer satisfaction drops, on average, 15%.

The never-ending IVR menus, ridiculously long response times, and multiple transfers are some of the typical events adding to customer effort. However, when customers are complaining about customer service, it may not necessarily mean poor agent performance alone. It is the overall experience the customers have had till that point which has disappointed them so much that they decided to cancel.

Companies underline their retention efforts only at the end-of-term:

The biggest mistake companies repeatedly do is, underline their retention efforts towards the end of a customer’s journey. But what companies fail to understand is that customers don’t decide to cancel overnight. Churn happens due to a series of poor customer care interactions, multiple substandard experiences, and counter offers from the competition; which together drive the customer to lose interest in the company.

Today most of the retention measures are reactive in nature as the visibility to churn root causes are limited. What companies see and perceive as churn reasons are just the tip of the iceberg and the real reasons for cancellations stay hidden, as companies, most of the time, don’t have the necessary capabilities to understand the root causes of customer dissatisfaction.

By the time companies intervene, it’s too late. What follows is a high cost and high effort marketing campaign involving costly offerings and discounts, however, they don’t mean much to a frustrated customer, who has already decided to cancel.

Problem Solution Fit – Proactive Lifecycle Risk Prevention:

Customers do inform companies about their wants, needs, and wishes during their interactions across various touchpoints with the company. Also, these needs and wishes would vary from customer to customer depending on their current customer lifecycle stage.

Companies must start using call center data like agent notes to understand their customers’ wants, needs, and wishes. Companies must also start using the call center channel as an effective way to proactively reach out to their customers to solve their issues and mitigate churn effectively.

Companies must constantly be on the lookout for customers showing various signs of cancellation such as mentioning their competitors, inquiring about contracts, calling repeatedly for the same issue, etc. before they actually decide to cancel. Today’s AI wave is empowering companies to identify those customers who are showing these churn symptoms in the early stages of the lifecycle. Companies have the options to proactively intervene through their customer service channels and prevent churn at the right moment by delighting the customer with excellent service before an irritation or series of annoyances becomes a full-scale churn problem.

Addressing the churn signals early and smartly depending on customer journey stage will consequently improve the overall customer lifetime value, ensuring a smooth and profitable business.

Business Benefits of Proactive Lifecycle Risk Prevention:


Addressing risk proactively is cost-effective:
According to Gartner, a commitment to customer experience results in up to 25% more customer retention and revenue than sales or marketing initiatives. If companies start addressing churn risk proactively, by intervening early in the customer lifecycle, they can mitigate the risk by providing personalized offerings. As they already know about their customer and these offers will be not only cost effective but also will improve customer satisfaction, which will further create opportunities for upselling and cross-selling in the future. Alternatively, dealing with a new prospect is as difficult as shooting in the dark with no guarantee of a positive outcome.

Earns customer loyalty:
According to The Institute of Customer Service, a 10% increase in customer satisfaction score results in a 12% increase in trust from customers. If service teams start reaching out to your customers proactively to sort out their issues before the customer starts complaining, customer satisfaction is bound to reach new heights, resulting in your customer’s loyalty for an extended period.

Easier upsell/cross-sell opportunities:
The probability of selling to an existing customer is 60% – 70%, while the probability of selling to a new prospect is 5%-20% according to Marketing Metrics. So, following a proactive approach results in positive customer experiences which means satisfied and happy customers. Happy customers will eventually increase sales and earn profits for businesses.

Reduces support costs:
Making it a priority to identify and fix issues causing poor customer experience helps improve your customers’ overall satisfaction rate with your company. It will also mean fewer repeat calls, shorter call times, and quicker problem resolution, all contributing to a lowering of customer care costs.

By investing in an AI-powered search to enhance your agent-assisted support, knowledge management, and customer experience efforts, your company can experience significant savings on support operations costs.

Takeaway:

A proactive approach to the churn problem can result in a 5% to 8% boost to retention rates in recurring revenue business from Telecom, Home Security, Insurance, etc. For that, finding the actual root causes for customer dissatisfaction and churn must always be a companies’ top priority. By not restricting churn understanding and prevention to some event, and instead looking at the entire customer lifecycle will always give the most accurate picture. Using call centers, the most prominent touchpoint, as the medium to understand customers as well as an effective retention service delivery channel will go a long way in mitigating churn risk and ensuring long-term business success.

The post Why Is Customer Churn Persistently High Regardless of Companies’ Sustained Efforts? appeared first on VOZIQ.

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According to research from Bain and Company, increasing customer retention by just 5% can lead to a whopping 25%-95% increase in revenue. To reduce churn, companies must analyze the most prevalent causes and start taking actions to address them in their combat against high attrition rates.

Based on our experience of working with leading recurring revenue businesses from industries such as home security, telecom and retail electricity suppliers, we’ve compiled a list of 10 common retention pitfalls to avoid.

Check if your team is a victim of any of these pitfalls:

1. Considering customer retention as the marketing team’s prerogative

Customer retention is no longer a prerogative of the marketing team alone. Any customer-obsessed business should make it clear across the organization that every department is equally responsible for overall customer retention.

One good customer experience can impact repeat business and diminish bad experiences, but repeated disappointments ultimately lead to cancellation. A bad experience can happen at any touchpoint, such as during a call center or service experience, neither of which are owned by marketing. So, to improve retention, every customer-facing department must be involved.

2. Not deploying Risk/Value-based marketing

Companies usually don’t segment customers based on their level of risk. For effective risk mitigation or customer revenue mining, marketers must implement segmentation based on risk or value propensity because such categories help companies maximize customer profitability by running targeted campaigns. For example, low-risk segments can receive cross-sell/upsell offers, while high-risk segments can receive proactive offers and resolution to mitigate their higher churn risk.

3. Relying only on structured data for risk predictions

Traditional churn models only rely on structured data, such as purchase history, billing information, etc. to predict risk. These models don’t make use of past and present events happening at multiple touch points, such as call centers, to understand customer behavior. Customer interactions collected in an unstructured format via agent notes are a goldmine of insights containing customer behavior patterns and emerging churn risk signals. With proper utilization, inferred risk signals, such as contract discussions, competitors’ mentions or cancellation mentions can be used to mitigate risk early with proactive best fit offers.

4. Reactive measures for churn management

By the time many companies identify at-risk customers, it is already too late and thus fail to reach their retention targets. Retention efforts at this time prove to be harder and more expensive. So, proactive risk identification early in the customer lifecycle proves vital for effective churn management.

5. Not recognizing customer effort as a business metric

Reducing effort is the most important thing your service strategy should aim to accomplish. Never-ending IVR menus, ridiculously long response times, multiple call transfers and failure to resolve customer issues on the first call are some of the typical events adding to customer disappointment and poor perception of the company’s indifferent attitude.

6. Curbing retention efforts to limited channels

One of the main reasons that hamper retention campaigns are the low contact rates with dissatisfied customers as retention teams use outbound channels to reach such customers. However, your customers are contacting you across multiple touch points. Thus, utilizing inbound touch points, such as service centers, to reach out to your dissatisfied customers will increase the opportunity to improve customer satisfaction before situations escalate and also help in driving effective retention campaigns with more offer take rates for maximum ROI.

7. Ineffective loyalty programs

Loyalty programs are proven to have a powerful impact on retention. However, loyalty programs often suffer from low response rates, which in turn are caused by low customer engagement and a lack of personalized offers. Using inbound channels, such as call centers to reach out to the right customers can propel the effectiveness of loyalty programs to new levels.

8. Believing acquisition is more important than retention

Taking good care of your existing customers is extremely important; however, many enterprises struggle at this, tending instead to put most of their resources into acquisition and not enough into retention. It’s important for companies to realize that retention plays a key role in generating more revenue by increasing the lifetime value of loyal customers.

9. Ignoring opportunities to winback lost customers

Random efforts to regain every lost customer can sap marketing dollars. Companies would be more efficient if they focused on customers whose prior behavior suggests a predisposition to return.

For effective win back, businesses must check the historical data of the customer, identify the root causes of their cancelation and score them for win-back propensity, based on multiple segmentation. Then marketers can run campaigns and provide tailored offers to each customer leading to effective marketing ROI.

10. Not deploying advanced technologies like AI, text analytics, and machine learning

Customers don’t decide to cancel overnight – usually, a series of bad experiences and interactions lead them to take this drastic step. Earlier, companies didn’t have many options to keep track of all their customers. However, with the advent of modern technologies, tracking customers at scale has become easy. Technologies like text analytics can be used to mine insights from millions of unstructured text formatted customer interactions in real time. These inputs to AI-driven machine learning models can help uncover complex risk patterns and predict at-risk customers very early in the lifecycle so necessary actions can be taken proactively for retention.

Takeaway:

The customer retention pitfalls above should give you fresh ideas for pulling up your sleeves and keeping your customers longer. A retained customer is happier, spends more and needs less service over time. Planning your line of attack while accounting for these retention pitfalls in your strategy will help you save millions of dollars in revenue by improving the lifetime value of your customers.

Click on the Below image to download your copy!

The post Top 10 customer retention pitfalls to avoid this year appeared first on VOZIQ.

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Unstructured data is any information that isn’t specifically structured for machines to understand easily. According to Gartner, unstructured data accounts for 80% of the business information but most businesses don’t effectively leverage it.

Why unstructured data?

Structured data contains “what” your customers did, while unstructured data can answer “why” they did it. Unstructured data consists of valuable customer insights such as their wants, wishes, needs, and pain points. If unstructured data usage becomes more prevalent in the world of feedback, the chances of mitigating churn will rise exponentially.

IDC estimates that by 2020,37% of unstructured data will be useful if properly analyzed, resulting in productivity gains of $430 billion for organizations.

6 ways unstructured data can support retention activities: 1. Perform root cause analysis of churn at scale:

Unmet customer expectations result in churn. Therefore, the strongest possible proactive customer retention program by far is simply providing your customers with a frictionless customer experience which meets their expectations. The current feedback mechanism involving surveys with low volume cannot identify customer’s intent at scale. However, in call centers, agents notate all their interactions in text format. Depending on a company’s size, this can grow to millions of rows of data annually. These unstructured agent notes can help us understand customers’ intent and sentiment at scale with greater accuracy.

2. Detect churn early as it emerges:

Unstructured textual data analysis can play a crucial role in identifying emerging churn. By leveraging text analytics technology, you can uncover sentiment, intent, effort, and customer risk signals from call center text notes. Simultaneously AI and machine learning can help uncover complex behavior patterns leading to churn tendencies. Since these churn indicators are picked up from customer interactions on a near real-time basis, they help with easy detection of upcoming trends leading to churn early in the customer lifecycle. Early detection helps companies take necessary actions for retaining customers at scale before it is too late.

3. Spot addressable churn risk:

Not all customers are the same, and not all churn is equal. Setting unreasonably high retention goals is foolhardy. For example: If a customer is relocating to a non-serviceable location then such churn is simply non-addressable. However, churn due to customer dissatisfaction is addressable and must be approached with proactive issue resolution strategies before it grows into a costly retention problem.

By analyzing historical customer interactions, models can easily predict addressable risk scenarios. Then retention teams can put targeted focus and effort towards effectively resolving issues of such customers proactively, achieving maximum impact from their retention efforts.

4. Deep customer segmentation for targeted marketing:

The insights gained out of agent notes are proving highly accurate and actionable. These insights are further strengthened with additional customer data like demographics, surveys, transactional history, etc. This unified customer record creates new possibilities for deeper customer segmentation and provides a better understanding of each customers behavior. Once the typical behavioral patterns of each customer are identified, you can segment customers based on their propensity to churn. Once these segments are created, it is easy for marketing teams to perform targeted marketing by creating meaningful outreach programs that can be highly effective in handling churn.

5. Build competitive intelligence:

Dissatisfied customers generally end up revealing competitor names while trying to resolve their issues and agents capture the interaction in the form of text notes. With the help of natural language processing, such data can be easily extracted, and deep knowledge about competitors, their offerings, and their area of demographic strength can be revealed. Using these insights, you can make better offers to your customers and stay ahead of your competitors.

6. Reduce customer effort:

Improving customer experience is responsible for reducing churn. Reducing customer effort is a crucial part of improving customer experience. By tracking calls at call centers, one can understand the call drivers and what is causing repeat calls from customers. By understanding the overall call flow through repeat call mapping, you can identify process gaps resulting in the customer putting in effort to resolve their issues leading to dissatisfaction which ultimately leads to churn.

Takeaway:

To sum up, it is essential to recognize that leveraging all unstructured customer data available in contact centers has immense benefits for businesses. It helps them understand whom their high-risk customers are, thereby helping companies take preventive measures potentially preventing revenue loss.

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The post Improving Customer Retention Strategies with Unstructured Data appeared first on VOZIQ.

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VOZIQ’s effort in articulating thoughts on leadership ideas around customer retention was recognized and well received by our fellow readers in 2018. We would like to share with you some of VOZIQ’s most popular blogs of 2018. In case you missed their first publication, we decided to share these blogs again as a recap on how 2018 went by.

We hope that you find these insightful!

It Is Time to Reinvent Your Customer Retention Strategy

Today, one poor customer service experience can prompt a customer to switch to your competition. According to a Forrester report, customers are increasingly driving up revenue risk, as they don’t mind doing business with competitors if their expectations are not met.

So, how can leaders succeed at the retention challenge?

  • Get a complete view of risk in the context of the customer journey
  • Make the best use of available customer data, especially interactions data
  • Leverage advanced technologies, such as AI and machine learning
Reimagining Customer Life Cycle to Retain More Customers

If you are in charge of customer retention in a recurring-revenue business, you know that your competition is always trying to poach your customers, and that your customers will jump ship after a bad experience, or in pursuit of a better deal. So what can you do to reduce churn?

Reimagining the customer life cycle by introducing a new stage to the life cycle: Safeguard!

In the safeguard stage, the focus is on identifying at-risk customers and engaging them proactively before the risk grows into a costlier retention problem. Here are the 4 ways to mitigate churn risk early:

  • Risk-based segmentation
  • Risk-aware care
  • Risk-aware marketing
  • Risk-aware operations

In case if you are wondering about how to implement the safeguard approach, this blog gives you a variety of insights.

How CMOs Can Collaborate With Contact Center Leaders to Boost Customer Success

Because of the growing importance of customer experience (CX) management in driving revenue, CMOs are making it a priority to work closely with contact center leaders. Most customer-centric CMOs are aware of this fact. The results show that 34% of U.S. CMOs have cited improving CX as their biggest concern.

However, when it comes to collaborating with customer service teams, there is a huge difference between collaborative leaders and marketers, who operate mostly within their group without running collaborative projects that join forces with groups like customer care, IT, HR, etc.

Following are the 3 scenarios where call center collaboration will pay off for CMOs:

  • Create deep understanding of customer behavior from unstructured customer interactions
  • Use inbound customer care calls as a proactive retention channel
  • Create next-best offers based on customers’ wants, needs, and wishes
100 Interesting Stats and Predictions for Customer Retention Leaders

With the growing competition among businesses in today’s market, the chances of distinguishing your business from your competition is diminishing considerably. But one thing is obvious; every business will try to enhance customer experience, reduce service costs, retain customers, and escalate revenue growth.

This blog has several stats and a few predictions about customer retention that will help you recognize what it means for your organization’s future. We hope that these stats and predictions will certainly provide businesses with insights which will help them know their focus area and also help retention leaders to surface with new and innovative strategies for customer retention and overall revenue growth.

How Can Telecom Companies Fight Evolving Churn and Boost Company Revenue?

Telecommunication businesses have seen the adverse effects of customer churn on company revenue. One of the reasons for this could be that most of the companies have been using traditional churn-prediction models that have been heavily dependent only on the data gathered from transaction histories and demographics, but this method fails to integrate dynamic customer-generated input with real customer needs, wants, and wishes.

So, having a churn-prediction model that can leverage customer interactions and is built on the latest technologies, like machine learning and AI, will help companies in analyzing the customer interactions at scale to understand customer behavior. This helps companies gain key insights about the customer that, when effectively utilized, will drive a 2x faster reduction in customer churn and significantly boost company revenue.

Thank you for taking time and going through our top 5 Customer Intelligence Blogs in 2018. We hope that the insights from our blog posts will inspire you and assist your team in building new strategies that will help your business reach new heights in 2019.

The post VOZIQ’s Most Popular Customer Intelligence Blog Posts of 2018 appeared first on VOZIQ.

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At first glance, chief marketing officers (CMOs) and contact center leaders may seem to have little in common. The CMO generally focuses on driving growth, brand engagement and customer retention efforts (which have become a higher priority as of late). The contact center leader, on the other hand, focuses on customer service management, service cost management and customer satisfaction metrics.

But increasingly, CMOs are making it a priority to work closely with contact center leaders because of the growing importance of customer experience (CX) management in driving revenue. Most customer-centric CMOs are aware of this fact. The results show that 34% of U.S. CMOs have cited improving CX as their biggest concern.

However, when it comes to collaborating with customer service teams, there is a huge difference between collaborative leaders and marketers who operate mostly within their group without running collaborative projects by joining forces with groups like customer care, IT, HR, etc.

Three Scenarios Where Call Center Collaboration Will Pay Off For CMOs

Even though the individual goals of the departments may differ, there are several specific ways CMOs can collaborate with contact center leaders to fine-tune their customer success strategies with better customer engagement, improved customer experience, and lower customer churn.

1. Create deep understanding of customer behavior from unstructured customer interactions

CMOs must rely on the voice of their customers to understand their wants, needs, and wishes. The current method of gathering this critical piece of information from surveys is insufficient in more ways than one — for example, limited sample size and no current view of the state of the customer. In contact centers, speech and text analytics can be used to mine millions of customer interactions to better understand customer behavior. Marketers can utilize this vital source of data to develop advanced behavioral intelligence for better predictions about drivers of additional purchases from existing customers, and customer churn drivers from expressed needs of customers using a large volume of calls.

2. Use inbound customer care calls as a proactive retention channel

AI and advanced analytics can analyze past interactions to predict a customer’s next action, including purchases and cancels. Marketers can use this knowledge to proactively reach out to customers with the right offers at the right time. A high-impact use case for this approach is to identify at-risk customers automatically through interactive voice response (IVR) and route them to specialist agents for proactive engagement and a highly effective offer presentation.

3. Create next-best offers based on customers’ wants, needs, and wishes

By pairing behavior patterns in key segments with macroeconomic and demographic data, marketers can create the right offers for the right sets of customers. This way, high-churn-risk customers can be provided discounted product offers to protect revenue and generate incremental revenue from happy customers with upsell offers or referral programs. This tactical approach is proven to be far more effective than other marketing techniques to optimize marketing spend on existing customers.

Fostering CMO-Call Center Partnership

A large number of CMOs, 81%, often work with their customer service counterparts to deliver outstanding customer experience as a differentiator among competitors. Here are a few tips for kick-starting an effective CMO and contact center leader partnership in your company:

1. Pick a joint project as a pilot to test waters and demonstrate results. Since customer satisfaction is directly correlated to customer retention, improving NPS can be the goal for the joint pilot.

2. Identify relevant customer data sources across departments, and integrate all them into a single database to remove any silos in understanding customers and thus increase the accuracy of the churn predictive models. Contact centers have extremely useful unstructured data captured directly from customer interactions.

3. Implement sales and retention programs within contact centers by pre-identifying high-value and high-churn-risk customers with proactive sales and retention teams with value-based call routing instead of routing to the first available service agent.

A commitment to customer experience results in up to 25% more customer retention and revenue than sales or marketing initiatives. The collaboration between CMOs and contact center leaders is indispensable to turning this potential into reality. Leaders who recognize this and act upon it can unlock new revenue generation opportunities and earn greater returns.

Originally published on Forbes

The post How CMOs Can Collaborate With Contact Center Leaders To Boost Customer Success appeared first on VOZIQ.

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Although 2018 was hailed as a year of reckoning by Forrester in its predictions last year, reality didn’t turn out that way. Market situations and evolving customer demands were supposed to compel companies to move more aggressively towards building effective customer experience (CX) strategies. However many businesses realized that large-scale strategies such as CX and digital transformation are hard, costly, and, most importantly, challenged the way leaders ran their businesses. This resulted in CX performance being flat throughout 2018 with more than 50% of digital transformation efforts stalled as per Forrester’s latest reports.

In the same report, Forrester made several predictions for the coming year and predicted that 2019 is the year where organizations will shift focus from strategic ambitions to pragmatic, surgical efforts towards organizational readiness, reducing technical debt, data governance, and aging brands.

Following are few of the predictions made by Forrester that would impact the CX industry in general:

Artificial Intelligence (AI) builds a foundation:

Artificial Intelligence has been a hot topic in the last few years as firms look to adopt it in their day-to-day business practices. Though it’s greatly transformative, a couple of things held it back in 2018:

  • Insufficient information architecture:

Artificial intelligence is data-dependent and data hungry. Most firms struggled with basic data governance issues. This can be the case when there is no data steward who can administer the data in the organization, take actions to fix data quality issues, protect critical organization data, reuse historical business data, and make better business decisions.

  • Lower usage than expected:

According to McKinsey, in 2017, just 20% of firms leveraged AI technology in their businesses and 41% of firms said they were uncertain about the benefits of AI, which resulted in low AI usage. The trend continued in 2018 with firms willing to explore AI but remaining unsure about setting up the right expectations for their respective business outcomes.

Our take: Even though everyone is thinking about solving their biggest problems with AI, not everyone is equipped to use it. Complex processes, costly infrastructure, disruptive nature, lack of data governance, high stakes, and business readiness are just some of the immediate hurdles

VOZIQ, one of the leading players in predictive customer retention solutions, offers a risk-free, cheaper, and non-disruptive alternative to a full-fledged intrusive solution through its Proof of Value (POV) service. This 4-Week, Codified Engagement allows subscription businesses to quickly assess Business Case of an advanced Artificial Intelligence solution that is powered by dedicated machine learning models.

Key benefits of the POV program include:

  • Rapid pre-assessment of Predictive Retention Solution powered by machine learning models on unstructured data
  • No-risk, low-cost option to demonstrate value of predictive data science and get executive buy-in for critical business initiatives
  • No disruption, no IT dependency: Just export identified data source flat file and receive a Findings + Business Case presentation along with an initial proposal in 4 weeks
CX remains under fire:

Customer experience performance remains under fire for the third successive year since 2017. CX results show a threatening gap in customers’ sense of emotional engagement and loyalty. According to Forrester, 89% of surveyed CX professionals stated that the return on investment of customer experience is not well established in their companies. Just as in 2018 where CX has seen a strategic and structural disparity between what it needs to do and what it’s allowed to do or is capable of doing. CX will continue to experience the same inconsistency in 2019.

Our take: Making use of unstructured textual data containing customer interactions would be a good starting point to bolster your VOC project. Knowing what your customer wants, needs, and wishes for is paramount in delivering the experience your customers expect from you.

Takeaways:

Even though predictions for the new year start on a grim note, Forrester believes that most firms will come out of 2019 stronger and more capable by getting the fundamentals right, which will set them up for even more ambitious strategies that align to market demands.

The post Forrester 2019 Predictions: The Year where Transformation goes Pragmatic appeared first on VOZIQ.

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This article contains a collection of 50 highly popular articles that appeared on the internet in 2018. Our curators had a gala time picking the best of the lot and we are very happy to present it to customer-obsessed leaders like yourself. We hope that these resources will offer interesting insights about various customer strategies as we progress into 2019. Enjoy reading!

Customer Retention:

The foundation of customer retention is knowing what your customers want and offering a personalized experience. According to Salesforce, 50% customers are likely to switch brands if a company doesn’t anticipate their needs. The key to figuring out what they want lies in understanding the unstructured customer data they leave behind after the interaction.

Following are a few popular articles on customer retention, which our curators found on the internet in 2018  .

Customer Lifetime Value:

Customer lifetime value is the most important metric that companies overlook and its significance has been understated for a long time. But, 98% of companies now call customer lifetime value critical to their marketing strategy. Today, the majority of companies have realized the significance of customer lifetime value, and are slowly getting better at using it effectively for their revenue growth.

Customer Experience:

Customer experience is the new marketing. Brands that are well-positioned for success in the coming years have adopted a new strategy; they compete on Customer Experience. According to research, 81% of satisfied customers are more likely to do business with you again if they have a positive experience.

Customer Satisfaction:

When it comes to company health, arguably the most important driver is customer satisfaction. A majority of customers will choose the company that had satisfied them even though their prices are high over a cheap, but low-quality service option. In fact, small business leaders estimate that 85% of their new business comes from word of mouth.

Customer Service:

The best way to improve your brand’s reputation is to simply focus on customer service. Companies that provide the best customer service also have strong brand reputations. Turning customers into brand evangelists is easily possible if you treat your customer’s right every time.

We hope that these handpicked resources will offer you fresh insights on the best practices, tips, techniques, and use cases for improving customer lifetime value, customer experience, customer satisfaction, customer service, and customer retention.

Click the below image to download the Article in PDF format.

The post 50 Handpicked Resources for Customer Retention Leaders – 2019 Edition appeared first on VOZIQ.

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