There is no doubt that content marketing as a practice is beginning to be widely adopted by organizations. Indeed, conservative estimates suggest the content marketing industry to be worth $44 billion.
That said, whilst content seems to be infiltrating every aspect of the customer-centric organization – sales, marketing, ops and HR – it remains curiously divorced from the activities and the day-to-day concerns of the customer contact centre.
This is an incredible oversight as tracking customers’ content consumption provides an incredible amount of interest data that can be fed into contact centre databases to empower reps and inform the conversations they have with customers.
Lack of accurate customer insight hinders call centre communications
Ninety-two percent of consumers surveyed in a Customer Driven Quality Survey by Purdue University said that they form their decision to repurchase services from a company based on their call centre experience. Delivering the kind of call centre experiences that ensures retention means fast service, meaningful, appropriate actions, and consistent communication that transforms in-call interactions into relevant sales or retention opportunities.
Currently, the ability to deliver these experiences is completely dependant upon the known customer information that is available to the contact rep. This will likely include the name of the person who is calling, what age group they’re in, what demographic segment they occupy, what they’ve bought before, and even why they might be calling at a particular time.
However, no matter how faithfully the data is compiled or how efficiently it is parsed by call centre technology to deliver on-the-fly scripts or propositions for the agent – the nature of these data sources is not without problems.
As a customer, I am much more complex than my demographic segment – a generalization based on my age bracket, postcode and, perhaps, also my income as well. I can’t be reduced to merely the items I’ve bought – indeed, my historic buys are rarely indicative of my future purchases; nor are they indicative of what has changed in my life since I’ve made a purchase.
So where then can contact centres go for a more truthful and useful insights into their customers?
Content consumption reveals your customers’ unique and current contexts.
Author Walter Mosley once said, “A man’s bookcase will tell you everything you’ll ever need to know about him”, and it with this in mind that brands are starting to see the value of understanding what customers are reading and engaging with online. By tracking customer’s interactions as they browse and engage with content, brands can use content analytics to begin to reveal current and evolving interests, inclinations and needs — sometimes before the individual knows themselves!
Content intelligence platforms are able to extract the topics contained within content (for example – people, places, activities, brands etc) and create interest profiles for individual customers in CRM systems to be used by agents in contact centres.
How would customer service change in a retail bank if the reps knew that the caller had just become a first-time parent?
Or, what if the agent was able to mollify an irate customer who had a product issue with tickets to see particular sports game because they knew the customer was an avid Manchester United FC fan?
None of these could be revealed by looking at purchase history logs or knowing the caller’s date of birth. As such, interest data from content is vital for communicating with callers and delivering a more meaningful dialogue and exposing opportunities to cross-sell or upsell.
Delivering content intelligence to your agent’s CRM system
Whilst reps may historically have found themselves having to manually enter other types of customer data, customer interest profiles derived from content consumption can be populated in CRM systems through an automated API or Web-based system. CRM systems (such as Salesforce) or more complex customer experience suites (such as Chordiant) can be integrated with intelligent content platforms to receiving topic-level interests (“Chelsea FC”, “Oasis”, “Buy-To-Let”) about individuals based on the content they’ve been reading.
Fundamentally, contact centres cannot take the next step in customer satisfaction until they’ve been empowered with the relevant supporting data to deal with the purpose of the call.
Now, thanks to content intelligence, that can be constantly updated interest data which will provide deeper and more actionable insight for dealing with increasingly complex and demanding customers.
Jonny Rose is Product Evangelist for personalized content marketing software company, idio. idio believes that content consumption reveals an individual’s needs and interests and our technology enables brands to use this information to deliver relevant communications.