| Contact Center/CRM Views and Analysis

Steve Wozniak to Keynote ITEXPO Las Vegas

We are extremely proud to announce Steve Wozniak is a keynoter at ITEXPO in Las Vegas, Thursday, August 29 at 10am....

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Attend the WebRTC Webinar and Learn More about the Disruption

Tomorrow, February, 20th, Dialogic will be hosting a WebRTC webinar and we’re pleased to have with us respected analyst Dean Bubley from...

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Thank You Amazon, Retailers May Now Merge at Will

When reports surfaced regarding Office Depot merging with OfficeMax, the first thing which may have occurred to many, is regulators wouldn’t let...

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Scam Users, Accumulate Facebook Likes, Buy a Ferrari

Bitdefender Labs recently reported that a site showing kittens and unicorns suggested users download a “business flash” plugin in order to see...

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Windows 8 Sync Settings - Security Hole

Windows 8 has a cool new feature that lets you login with your cloud-based Microsoft account (@hotmail.com, @live.com, @outlook.com) and it will...

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Is Apple Too Sexy for MWC?

In deciding not to exhibit at the Macworld events, CES and MWC, Apple has shown the world that it doesn’t need...

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The (Social) Customer Isn't Always Right

June 8, 2011

There appears to be a tendency with social media as a new and highly visible channel to overstock the value of the sentiments expressed in the posts and Tweets, that they do accurately represent the voice of customer and that the complaints are accurate and well-founded. And that those who made them must be supplicated to keep them as customers, lest they tell hundreds of others never to do business with one’s company ever again.

These set of attitudes with social media reflect the cliché “the customer is always right.”


The New Customer Self-Service: Ourselves

May 19, 2011

Leave aside well-trained live agents, subject matter experts reachable via presence and knowledgebase-connected automated IVR/speech rec and web self-service.

One of the best (and the most affordable) answers to customer service issues--from basic product information to fixing problems—may come from each one of us, which can be termed as peer service or peer support. That is provided that this method is set up and managed right.

Peer service/support is exploding in popularity thanks to social media which has taken it from the rarefied confines of IT bulletin boards, whose establishment predates the Web and whose participants were likeminded geeks to the hoi polloi in the virtual universe.

"Managing" The Anonymous Customer

May 16, 2011

It has long been a given in more recent customer attraction and retention strategies that knowing your customers is key to connecting and staying connected with them to obtain maximum lifetime value including, with the advent of social media, the value of those they can influence.

The ability to accurately identify customers and to determine their incomes, demographics, purchasing patterns, likes and dislikes enables more personalized, targeted and successful offers and service that hopefully leads to repeat business, recommendations and referrals.

Customers in turn expect that when companies contact them or when they reach out to firms that they know them well enough to meet and anticipate their needs.

Or do they?

Do-Not-Track Online Act Will Make The Web Less Creepy By Shooing Away "Nasty Sister"

May 10, 2011

Going online and going mobile has become a creepy experience with companies tracking your movements: virtually and in-person. There is something disturbing about for example web ads for companies that one does business with (or the case of biz journalists, one covers) when they appear on general newspaper sites. Including when one is mobile and is at home. Equally disturbing are ads from one’s own country displaying on a site belonging to a firm in another.

9-11-01 to 5-01-11: Honoring Contact Centers Who Were, And Are, On The Line

May 2, 2011

I have not yet found the words to fully and adequately describe my reaction when I heard and saw the news late Sunday night, 05-01-11, that Osama bin Laden had been killed by U.S. forces.

The closest is a heartfelt thanks to the brave men and women both uniformed and civilian who have been relentless in pursing the perps and bringing them to justice at the risk to their lives. And to the families who support them.

Forget Government Big Brother, The Real Evil is the Private Sector "Nasty Sister"

April 15, 2011

It is not the Orwellian government “Big Brother” citizens have to worry about in protecting their privacy and freedom. It is instead “Nasty Sister” i.e. private companies that aggregate vast amounts of data on individuals and track their every move.

Of the two Nasty Sister is more evil because “she” on the surface is sweeter and seemingly more benign.

The Dangers of Social Media Commentary

March 29, 2011

There is one cardinal rule of social media: that it is media. Anyone who comments on these sites and uses these tools is acting no differently than if they were facing a camera, have a mike in their face or are glancing at someone scribbling in a notebook. Employees or others who are acting on behalf of organizations who go on social media must have the same skills and discipline as those who appear on-camera, on the air and on the record.

I have been warning of the risks of having individuals who lack this training, discipline and experience, namely contact center agents, to go on social media.

More Reasons to Question Loyalty Programs

March 22, 2011

It is much more profitable to retain customers than to continually attract new ones. Yet I am deeply skeptical about customer loyalty programs to achieve that goal because the truest way to win and keep customers is by getting the fundamentals right. That is: consistently providing what customers want with high product/service quality and deliverability at the right price. Everything else is just a gimmick.

Are Contact Centers Supporting Customers Via Social Media?

March 7, 2011

According to an excellent recent blog entry by Tim Passios, Director of Solutions Marketing, Interactive Intelligence, not as many as may well be warranted by well-publicized incidents e.g. “United Breaks Guitars” .

Tim lists some very impressive social media statistics:

* Almost 640 million users of Facebook (SocialBakers)
* Over 90 million tweets a day
* Over 156 million blog sites (BlogPulse)

Tim wrote: “most contact centers just aren't feeling the absolute need to support it as a channel for now. As one of the customers I spoke with told me, "The majority of people are going to call you long before they are going to tweet or blog about bad customer service. Our job is to take care of that customer at the time they call and not give them a reason to use Social Media."

They, and Tim, have a point.

Letter Responding to Jan. CIS Logout "To Improve Quality and Profits Get Rid of "HR"

February 25, 2011

Here is a letter written in response to my Logout column “To Improve Quality and Profits Get Rid of "HR" that appeared in the January 2011 Customer Interaction Solutions.

In the piece I decried the too-often poor contact center agent and supervisor hiring and screening practices, such as job descriptions having little to do with the reality of the work, as a result of the human resource "HR" mentality--treating people like raw materials rather than as individuals.


Brendan –

I read your article (Customer Interactions Solutions, Jan 2011 issue) and couldn’t agree more. 

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