Is Messaging The Best Channel for Customer Service?

Customer Service Messaging - LiveWorld
Matthew Hammer post by: Matthew Hammer

In today’s on-demand world, customers expect to reach customer service almost instantly. Traditional digital channels like web and email no longer provide the experience customers accept. Looking for a sure-fire way to gain the competitive edge? Be there when your customers want you.

  • 41% of companies ignore customer service emails. Customer Service Benchmark Report
  • 86% of consumers report being put on hold every time they call a business.TalkTo
  • 71% of customers are “tremendously annoyed” when they can’t reach a live customer service agent.Consumer Reports

Instant Messaging Reigns

Where, exactly, are your customers? Facebook Messenger is a good bet. Customer service teams take notice: messaging apps are your key to delivering great customer service. Early adopters of customer service messaging like Bank of America, Citibank and TD Bank and brands like the NBA and Call of Duty are already gaining a competitive advantage as they connect on a deeper level with consumers, and earn a greater share of customer loyalty and advocacy.

  • Messaging and social networking app sessions have grown 44% from 2015 to 2016.Flurry Analytics
  • The time spent in messaging apps increased 394% from 2015 to 2016.Flurry Analytics

Using messaging apps to engage with customers opens up an entirely new frontier for brands, a much greater opportunity to give consumers what they want when it comes to customer service – real-time, rapid responses with little to no wait times. On-demand, one-on-one conversations humanize the brand and allow customer service reps to provide helpful, personalized interactions at scale throughout all stages of the customer journey, building loyalty and increasing revenue.

Brands are embracing Facebook Messenger in droves. Understanding the reasons why isn’t hard.

  • Messaging is now the #1 preferred customer service channel.Twilio
  • 49.4% of consumers would rather talk to a business through a messaging platform than a phone.The 2016 Mobile Messaging Report

Whether through human agents, chatbots or a combination of both, boosting traditional customer service with messaging capability ensures service is available to customers and prospects 24/7/365, dramatically increasing team productivity and efficiency.

Does Facebook Messenger Work?

Customers are spending increasingly more time on messaging apps. Facebook Messenger leads the pack of messaging platforms being used in the United States. Studies show an increased frequency and duration of use with high retention rates. They just can’t get enough and keep coming back long after the app is installed. This doesn’t hold true for most apps.

  • Nearly 1 in 4 mobile users use an app once.Localytics
  • 62% of users will use an app less than 11 times.Localytics

Facebook Messenger provides persistent, timely, positive dialog between customers and brands. It’s at their beck and call, a requirement for many these days. Because instant messaging is on-demand and faster than any other communication channel, consumers’ time is respected. Why does this matter?

  • 73% of customers say valuing their time is the most important way brands can provide good customer service.Forrester
  • The #1 most important factor in customer loyalty is reduction of customer effort.Harvard Business Review
  • Speedy responses increase customers’ willingness to spend.Twitter
  • 86% of buyers will pay more for a better customer experience.Walker
  • 54% of millennials said they stopped doing business with brands who provided poor customer service.Conversion
  • 89% of businesses are soon expected to compete mainly on customer experience.Gartner

What You Can Do

It’s clear that brands and their customer service representatives need to be where their customers are today and Facebook Messenger is the ideal channel. Companies must be nimble. Customer service managers must see the opportunity Facebook Messenger presents, to not only build relationships and loyalty with consumers, but to deliver differentiating customer experiences on the channel most people prefer.

Augment your traditional social customer service platform with chatbot functionality that empowers agents to better control and enrich the customer experience. Embracing automation saves both the company and the consumer time, while fulfilling their needs much faster than live agents alone. When chatbots aren’t ideal or have reached their limits, live agents are standing by to step in, providing a seamless service model no matter the consumer demands.

Learn more about customer service software for a messaging world to increase the speed, scale and quality of your customer care.