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Delivering a Next Generation Customer Experience – Cisco at CDM’s Customer Experience Summit

We had a wonderful time at CDM’s Customer Experience Summit in Chicago, IL last week. CDM Media Summits bring together leading C-level executives, analysts and solution providers to network and attend interactive agenda sessions on the latest business topics and trends.

Customer Experience Summit Group

At the event, we gave the opening keynote presentation to address how enterprises can strive to meet the ever increasing demands of the customer.  The summit brought together some of the leading executives from a variety of industries to explore ways of confronting and overcoming current industry issues. This year’s conference focused on topics that enterprises must deal with now, not in the future:

  • Leveraging Big Data
  • Social Media Marketing
  • Predictive Analytics
  • Digital Interactive Marketing
  • Monetization of the Customer Experience
  • Customer Engagement Management Platforms

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Mayday for Insurance and Financial Services

According to Wikipedia, “mayday” is an emergency procedure word used internationally as a distress signal in voice procedure radio communications. It derives from the French expression “venez m’aider“, meaning “come to help me.” Most recently, the term has been used to describe a special feature Amazon now offers Kindle Fire HDX users when they need virtual support on their device. The user can simply touch the button on the Kindle screen and a contact center representative appears on the screen, where the customer can see, hear and talk with the Amazon customer service rep. It delivers personal help on-demand and in real-time.

Both uses of the word “mayday” described above apply to insurance and other financial services. It is indeed a “come to help me” signal that should be alerting insurance and financial services providers that the next-generation of customer experience capabilities is now here. We have seen the adoption pattern before—financial services customers now expect financial services firms to deliver similar services that they have access to through other industries.

The wait is over. In fact, retail banks are now rolling out similar “mayday” functionality to their customers through similar solutions that are driven by Cisco technology. As is the case with many technology trends, the “what could be” capabilities of the future are much closer than many realize. Consumers using virtual capabilities like FaceTime for social interaction are becoming much more likely to expect and use similar capabilities to interact with companies they do business with. Many workers today are also using virtual interaction to connect with colleagues to conduct business and perform their job functions. The fact is--virtual interaction has become much more common in our daily lives. Read More »

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Batman and the Customer Experience Center

The concept of the Customer Experience Center (CEC) is gaining attention in the customer care industry as the next logical step beyond the contact center.  Although a precise definition of the CEC is still under debate, a good starting point is to think of it as a set of technologies and business processes that deliver (hopefully superior) customer experience management, which Gartner defines as “the practice of designing and reacting to customer interactions to meet or exceed customer expectations and, thus, increase customer satisfaction, loyalty and advocacy.”

batman blog picIn the movie “Batman Begins“, Batman tells Rachel Dawes, “It’s not who I am underneath, but what I do that defines me.”  This statement offers an alternate way to think about the CEC--by considering what it does.  The emerging CEC encompasses Customer Collaboration by combining traditional contact center technology and processes with a range of collaboration technologies to empower businesses to forge deeper, more proactive relationships with their customers.  As such, the CEC moves beyond the traditional channels of interaction of the “contact center” to embrace new media and access methods desired by consumers, including video, mobile, and the social web.  Or the batphone.

The CEC has emerged because Read More »

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The New Price of Attracting and Retaining Insurance Customers

The insurance industry is facing a massive evolutionary shift driven by competition and changes in consumer preferences. The competitive battle is easy to see, as insurers delve out billions in advertising and marketing expenditures in an effort to attract and retain customers, while maintaining top of mind brand awareness and differentiation. And adding to the pile on--retail  banks are beginning to offer personal and commercial  policies, which means insurers are no longer only competing with one another, but banks as well.

Insurance fits into the broader context of how we live our lives. So, the same technology trends and innovations that are changing the way we interact with each other socially as well as with other products and services – travel, entertainment, automotive, to name a few–are changing the expectations we, as consumers, bring to the insurance experience. Customers want to interact with their insurance provider in the way they choose, at the time they choose, across any access channel with any device.     Read More »

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Banking Operating Models – Then and Now

A recent poll by American Banker Magazine reported on the impressions of the future of banking and generated some interesting perspectives about what the future will be like. While there were several insights, one comment especially captured the essence of the future:

The future model of banking will center around dramatically increased simplicity delivered through a mobile device (phone, tablet, wearable technology). The result will be an experience that makes banking part of other daily activities as opposed to a standalone event.

In other words, the business signs on our banks will now read “Open 24 Hours.”

How different this is, when compared to the operational model on which banks have operated for most of the time. Banks have their roots in a pre-Internet/pre-electronic communications era. Like many retail companies, banks were designed around a ‘brick and mortar’ physical model of operation and distribution. We can categorize this as the physical business operating model and the bank of now is heading towards anytime, anywhere access. Read More »

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