Thursday Jan 16, 2014

T-Commerce Has Joined the Omni-Channel Experience!

Television viewing is an emotional experience. As we watch our favorite shows, we laugh, we become enamored with our favorite characters, and we are sometimes moved to tears. If you are like me, you even scream at the TV during football games. On February 2, 2014, during Super Bowl XLVIII, you’ll also start to do something that was not possible until now - buy what you see advertised on one of those infamous Super Bowl ads. Shopping is also an emotional experience, so it is a shrewd move to combine these experiences. [Read More]

Wednesday Oct 16, 2013

The Evolution of an Era: Customer Experience in Retail

Two New Studies Point to the Direction Retailers are Taking in their CX Initiatives. Is it the Right Direction?

The sheer velocity of change in retailing and customer behavior is forcing retailers to reinvigorate, expand and sharpen their vital Customer Experience (CX) strategies. Customers are becoming increasingly dynamic as they race to embrace the newest digital channels; shop in new ways on mobile devices, including smartphones and tablets, on the Web and in the store; share experiences socially; and interact with their preferred brands in new ways. Retailers are stepping up to their customers as they and their competitors create new modes of customer interaction. Underpinning these changes are vast quantities of customer data as customers flood digital channels and the social sphere.

The informed retailer must now understand what their priorities are and what they should be for the future. To better understand this, Tata Consultancy Services (TCS) and Oracle independently launched CX-focused surveys to uncover what retailing leadership found important today. By comparing the results of these two studies together, we can further discover new insights about the industry. Click here to download this informative white paper.

Friday Sep 13, 2013

Four Ways to Deliver Better Customer Service with Integrated Knowledge Management and CRM By JP Saunders

CRM solutions without integrated knowledge management suffer from a number of limitations. They don’t enable customers to become more self-sufficient or foster a community that can generate its own answers. They lack the centralized intelligence needed to deliver innovation and consumer-driven interactions, so support agents can’t learn, serve, or collaborate as effectively as their jobs require. And, they lack the analytical insights customer service organizations require to truly understand customer needs, making it difficult to optimize answers and, ultimately, the customer experience.

Here are 4 ways that integrated knowledge management and CRM can deliver better customer experiences:

  1. Increase first call resolutionThe most important aspect of a satisfying customer experience with a contact center is getting a representative who can meet all the customer’s needs—without having to forward inquiries to other representatives. Integrated knowledge management pulls answers from across organizational silos and puts it at the agent’s fingertips--without having to leave their CRM application.
  2. Increase self-serviceMany customers prefer to serve themselves. They want to find the answer quickly and easily without requiring escalation to the contact center. With integrated knowledge management, you can empower your customers to easily help themselves. But, you can also seamlessly transfer to assisted service with the context of their self-service interaction, if it becomes necessary. 
  3. Build your knowledgebase – The foundation of providing quick and easy answers is to build out a robust knowledge base. However, cumbersome navigation to create solutions can be a barrier to building your knowledge base. When knowledge is integrated with CRM, you can easily create knowledge solutions directly from service cases so that it’s available for the next customer or agent to use. 
  4. Learn and improve your serviceIntegrated knowledge allows you to understand customer usage and service issues – most common searches, percentage of cases resolved with knowledge, solutions used the most, etc. in order to improve your customer experience. Armed with this understanding, you can identify actions that will increase search accuracy or, better yet, address root causes that eliminate the need to search at all. 

The World’s leading Knowledge Management solution, Oracle Knowledge, now enhances the Oracle RightNow Cloud Service capabilities with expanded search capabilities, deeper language understanding, business intelligent analytics, support for more content types, languages, and much more. Now available in the Oracle RightNow Agent Desktop and Customer Portal, this integration provides agents with the ability to accurately assist customers with finding the right answer at the right time. 

For more information on these high-value features, please watch the Oracle RightNow Cloud Service – August 2013 Release Overview or read the Oracle RightNow Cloud Service – August 2013 Capabilities and Benefits. You can also attend the Integrating Knowledge Management into CRM Applications session at OpenWorld. 

Thursday Aug 29, 2013

Oracle RightNow Cloud Service August 2013 Release - Leveraging the Power of Oracle’s Best-of-Breed CX Suite! By JP Saunders

The August 2013 release of Oracle RightNow Cloud Service gets super charged by Oracle’s CX portfolio with best-of-breed commerce, automated entitlement management  and enterprise knowledge capabilities to empower people across all channels of interaction throughout the lifecycle journey with the brand.

Streamline Online Sales

Oracle RightNow Cloud Service seamlessly blends the power of commerce into its Agent Desktop to help contact center staff deliver relevant, proactive cross- and upsell offer in real time during successful customer service engagements. This powerful combination of Oracle RightNow Service Cloud and Oracle ATG Web Commerce empowers customer service professionals to rapidly identify and resolve issues within the buying and supporting lifecycle, across all channels of interactions. Customers can now get timely, relevant and consistent assistance with completing an order, adding related items to their shopping carts, upgrading or renewing services, as well as effective support with what they purchase--all from a single agent interaction in chat, social, phone, mobile or Web.

Make Complex Decisions Instantly and Consistently

This release extends the power of automating entitlement management to the Agent Desktop. With Oracle Policy Automation tools now available to service agents, they’re able to instantly get assistance with complex decisions leveraging existing contextual case data. And, those decisions will be consistent with the guidance that a customer receives through self-service on the Web. So regardless of channel or interaction choice, your customers’ service experience is not only efficient but also consistent, personalized and intuitive.

Choose the Knowledge Management Solution That Best Meets Your Customer Needs

Now any business can do what some of the World largest online brands are doing! Businesses that require the ability to connect content silos or to consistently and accurately federate knowledge across their enterprise can now power up their Oracle RightNow solution by leveraging the Oracle Knowledge adapter. The World’s leading Knowledge Management solution, Oracle Knowledge, augments Oracle RightNow Cloud Service knowledge capabilities with deeper language technologies, business intelligence analytics, more support content types, languages and more… Now available in the Oracle RightNow Agent Desktop, this integration provides agents with the ability to accurately assist customers with finding the right answer at the right time.

For more information on these high-value features, please watch the Oracle RightNow Cloud Service – August 2013 Release Overview or read the Oracle RightNow Cloud Service – August 2013 Capabilities and Benefits.

Tuesday Aug 27, 2013

The Social Customer Service Maze

Your Customers Are Already Talking – It’s Time to Join the Conversation

While social media has become a standard function in most marketing departments, customer service and contact centers are just beginning to become actively involved in social media. When I talk to executives that run service/support or contact centers, I tend to get the same reaction when social media comes upHELP!

[Read More]

Wednesday Aug 21, 2013

Cross-channel Service: Is Voice Going Away? by JP Saunders

In the customer experience business, we hear a lot about the rise in the use of online channels such as Web self-service, email, chat, and social and the importance of having a cross-channel solution. It’s easy to forget that voice is still the #1 channel that customers use to resolve customer service issues. Not to say that cross-channel is unimportant – it definitely is. 

According to Kate Leggett, Forrester Research, “Telephoning a live representative remains the most frequently used customer service channel, and its usage is relatively consistent over time and across generations. This shows that customers are not abandoning the traditional customer service channels in favor of newer ones but are increasing the total number of channels they use when interacting with companies.”1

So the voice channel remains as strong as ever, as are the customer’s expectations to seamlessly traverse into that channel from online channels. 

If you’re interested in how to provide robust voice and cross-channel capabilities as part of your service solution at lower cost and risk, you won’t want to miss these Avaya sessions at Oracle OpenWorld, September 22-26, 2013, in San Francisco. Avaya, a long-time leader in Contact Center technology, has an exciting announcement to make pertaining to the close partnership it has with the Oracle RightNow Cloud Service product. 

·         Enabling Oracle CRM Platforms Through Avaya Technology

·         Oracle Service Vision and Roadmap

1Understand Communication Channel Needs To Craft Your Customer Service Strategy, Forrester Research, Inc., Kate Leggett, March 11, 2013

Tuesday Aug 20, 2013

CRM Evolution 2013: Social Care is a Mainstream Channel

CRM Evolution's Customer Service Experience track began today with Hewlett Packard’s (HP) Patricia Graca talking about Social Care. She got our attention with some eye-opening statistics:

  • 1 in 3 users prefer social care over contacting via the phone
  • 80% of customers will not purchase a product if there is a negative review
  • 43% of customers use social media to publicize a bad experience—and 48% a positive experience

Graca has built a social support community with volunteer experts who give two to 30 hours of their time every week to answer other customers’ questions.

What motivates these experts to devote so much time? She found that the top motivator is the satisfaction they receive from helping people. But Graca doesn’t stop there. She uses gamification to motivate experts with things like:

  • 15 status levels they can climb based on their answers’ usefulness
  • Avatars created from personal photos experts submit
  • Privileges like early access to new products, training and special events

Graca even hosts 24-hour social support marathons in which 100s of experts around the world participate—creating a wealth of crowd source wisdom for HP.

Currently, 1% of her social support community serves as experts and/or contributors. Her next challenge is encouraging the remaining 99% to actively participate.

Monday Aug 19, 2013

Become a part of your customer's life at CRM Evolution 2013

The first day of the CRM Evolution 2013 Conference and Exhibition began with a dynamic keynote by Jeanne Bliss, Founder of CustomerBliss.com. She talked about organizations “becoming a part of the story of their customers’ lives” through:

Getting Real—walking a mile in their customers’ shoes

  • Example: USAA has new hires eat army rations, wear flak jackets and boots and go through the same insurance application processes

Being There—improving the top five contact points that matter most to customers

  • Example: WestJet empowers its frontline staff to give ‘honored guests’ the best experience possible

Apologizing Well—responding quickly and humbly to solve problems

  • Example: Southwest sends apology letters offering discount coupons to fly again.  

Oracle’s very own Matt Kresch, Principal Product Strategy Director, spoke about the Modern Contact Center. To be ‘modern,’ your service organization must be able to carry on a seamless conversation with the customer across channels. A unified agent desktop—that brings all the customer information and engagement tools together on one screen—makes this possible.

Monday Aug 12, 2013

T-Commerce - Revolutionizing the Omni-Channel Experience!

After months and months of watching my favorite host on my favorite guilty-pleasure television show give away the 100th Mazel sweatshirt, I finally decided I HAD to have one of my own! So, off I went to find my iPad to buy my own Mazel sweatshirt. As I placed my order through Delivery Agent’s Commerce platform, I was made aware that I had just experienced “The Next Generation of Commerce.” I actually hadn't, but it intrigued me enough to want to learn more!

I received my sweatshirt and fell in love! It really is as soft as the host and his celebrity guests swear it is. Not only that, I get tons of compliments, comments, and sometimes cultish references to the Real Housewives. It made me think - I should have bought this the first time I saw it. Imagine if it were as simple as pressing "Buy" on my remote, as Delivery Agent wants me to believe it soon will be. Would it have taken me that long? Or, would the ease of purchasing capabilities and my human need for instant gratification have made me push that button a long time ago? How many more products would I buy if it were always that easy? 



T-Commerce (TV commerce) had been missing from the omni-channel experience – until now.

The first T-Commerce enabled televisions have been developed!

  • The [t-commerce] application is pre-loaded into 2012 and 2013 Samsung Smart TVs. The platform offered by Delivery Agent is able to map over 1MM products to a given show, episode, network, ad, character or scene, and make them available for sale across hundreds of shows.
  • Samsung is the #1 brand of televisions.
  • North America is predicted to have a total of nearly 136 million “TV households” by the end of this year.

Imagine the possibilities! The typical process to purchase something you see on a television commercial, for example, is to use another device to go online and visit that brand’s page, usually to only then be redirected to a retailer's site. How much time and effort did that consumer expend just to buy a brand's product? Imagine if, instead, you simply hit a button on your remote and buy a product - without ever having to leave the comfort of your couch or transition to another device! Imagine the increase in conversion rates those brands will realize! Imagine the innovation in Customer Experience those brands will be recognized for!



American Express has also entered the T-Commerce space!

  • For years, marketers have dreamed of viewers who could buy products as TV shows are airing. As a viewer, I've imagined what it would be like to be able to buy a dress one of my favorite characters is wearing. 
  • American Express has been trying to make those visions come to life, partnering with Fox and NBC Universal.
  • "As viewer habits change and technology continues to evolve, and scale gets more elusive, context and impact mean everything," - Linda Yaccarino, president of NBC Universal.

Consider this untapped channel and the huge potential that exists!  Let’s examine the Kardashians as an example.  They are a brand in and of themselves and they also have a TV show. Imagine the revenue that the Kardashians could generate!  As their TV show is playing out, they are now able to naturally and easily position their products. Imagine the cross-brand selling potential for the phones they use, the cars they drive, and the clothes they wear! The marketing and selling potential is tremendous, especially considering that, if executed correctly, this is a subtle selling channel, driven by the customer.

So, let us not forget this very important channel. Be aware - T-Commerce is no longer missing from the omni-channel experience.

  • References:

Start-ups | Delivery Agent Inc. Introduces New T-Commerce App for ...

rightstartups.com/delivery-agent-inc-introduces-new-t-comme...

http://m.adage.com/article?articleSection=media&articleSectionName=Media&articleid=http%3A%2F%2Fadage.com%2Fmedia%2Farticle%3Farticle_id%3D240048

Additional Information: 

http://digital.licensemag.com/nxtbooks/advanstar/license0213/#/24

http://about.americanexpress.com/news/pr/2012/t-commerce.aspx

Tuesday Jul 16, 2013

Commerce in China Part 1 – ‘Gotta Have Trust’

I have China on the brain.  No, not because of last night’s dinner.

As I put the final touches on the presentations for Oracle Open World in Shanghai (July 22-25 at the Shanghai Expo Center), I cannot help but start to piece together themes for this amazing market. Through the conversations about online retail in the region and discussions on challenges and opportunities, one unique theme jumps out: Trust.

Each geographic market has its own spirit-of-the moment, the table-stakes expected by a customer.  In China today, this focus on experience translates to trust.  Can I trust the site? Will my payment go through? Will my goods arrive on time?

In the first part of my blog post on China, I’ll write about the unique Chinese market that makes the relationship between transacting through digital channels and gaining consumer trust particularly important.  Subsequent topics in the series will be: China – the ultimate mobile consumer, and observations from Oracle Open World Shanghai.

[Read More]
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