Warren Levitan, co-founder, and CEO of Smooch (smooch.io) provides an analysis of the current state of consumer-to-business communication. Smooch’s mission is to humanize the connections between consumer and business. As there are literally billions of messaging accounts globally, messaging is the dominant online activity. Levitan’s company, Smooch, seeks to make interaction with trusted brands highly useful, more intimate and immediate, for a more human experience overall. As consumers now demand more personal and human type communication, businesses have high expectations for software vendors to innovate and discover new means and methods of delivering these customizable customer experiences.
Levitan discusses the frustrations that consumers feel when their needs are not met when personalization is low during contact with companies. He outlines the problems with call queues and disconnected architectural systems that leave consumers irritated when they have to continually retell their stories, describe their issues/problems, to each new person as they work their way toward a solution. Thus, Smooch has developed new ways to make personalization extend throughout the consumer experience, increasing efficiency, and thus allowing for a smoother experience overall. Smooch seeks to introduce messaging services that consumers are already comfortable with (iChat, Facebook Messenger, Line, WhatsApp, WeChat, etc.) into the business setting. Therefore, users and consumers can initiate business transactions through their favorite means of communication, and this enables their basic information to be recorded by the business, thus allowing each continued conversation in the future to start from a point of understanding, instead of starting from scratch.
Levitan describes some of the exceptional benefits that their system affords. For example, a hotel guest who needs a service during their stay and could be detained on the phone multiple minutes waiting for one employee to talk to another employee who can solve the issue, can now simply connect via their preferred chat, leave a message, and continue with their day. And he provides information on how AI can help to expedite consumer requests, as consumers are able to use natural language to ask for services.
The communication expert talks about consumer accessibility and how messaging is the key to efficiency in business, which leads to customer satisfaction and business growth. By reducing consumers’ workload, personalizing messages, and simplifying processes for them, consumers’ frustration is decreased, which leads to higher retention rates. Levitan muses about the many successful businesses that have enhanced consumer experiences by simplifying and personalizing, such as 1-800-Flowers.com and the Four Seasons hotel chain. Levitan outlines how businesses of any size can easily configure their channels to Smooch and connect to one of Smooch’s customer service platforms.
Levitan’s team wants to help businesses achieve the best consumer experience possible, and their platform allows for communication connections to happen in literally as many messaging services as are needed, regardless of the amount of consumers who are using any one service. Levitan discusses the importance of integrating backend information into the consumer-business experience, which allows businesses to jump-start the conversations and potentially target consumers’ interests and/or problems quicker. And as the technology evolves, Levitan hopes topen new channels and further their global access.