Customer communication management should be high on any company’s agenda – and yet, 88 percent of organizations aren’t satisfied with how they manage customer-facing communications across the customer journey, according to Forrester.
That’s a worry, because how you go about communicating with your customers is one of the biggest factors in creating outstanding customer experience. And that’s something all businesses should aim for.
But what exactly is customer communication management? And how can it help your business connect with customers?
Let’s take a look.
Customer communications management (CCM) is about creating strategies to improve the way you create, deliver, store and retrieve all types of outbound communications to customers. These communications could take place across a number of different channels such as email, live chat, the website, or even SMS and phone call.
Good customer communication management is central to understanding and coordinating customer correspondence. Given how highly customers now value a seamless conversational experience, this has taken on even more significance – particularly in a world where companies often have countless ways and channels to communicate through.
At the end of the day, CCM increases the efficiency of communication and helps find better ways to engage customers. That way companies can improve their communication strategy and so strengthen customer relationships.
You might well be thinking that this all sounds an awful lot like customer relationship management. So, what’s the difference?
Well, although both are crucial components of the overall customer experience, there are important distinctions to be made.
CRM is focused on managing customer interactions through data analysis. The end goal is to create sales growth and improve customer retention. CCM, on the other hand, is more concerned with supporting the customer interactions themselves using a variety of different tools and processes and focuses on creating customer engagement.
Improving customer communication doesn’t happen overnight – it’s part of a longer journey. And different companies are at different stages of this journey. Knowing where you sit can help you understand what you need to do to move your company towards the end goal.
The “The State of CCM-to-CXM Transformation” report, breaks down this journey into three specific parts:
Although the concept of customer communication management has been around for a while, it’s now vastly more complex than ever before – largely due to the shift towards digital communication.
This digitization has given rise to certain trends which in turn shape CCM strategies. Some of these trends include:
So, what are strategies you can use to help meet these challenges head on? The following ideas will help you:
Customer communication management software helps companies create, deliver, organize and retrieve customer communications by allowing them to compose, personalize, format, and deliver content from a variety of sources to their customers. These communications can then be distributed through a number of media formats, including mobile, email, SMS, web pages, social media, and print.
The functions of CCM solutions bring positive benefits to your business. And that’s because they can help you:
So, if you want a truly comprehensive solution that can help you achieve all these goals, keep an eye out for software that can:
Looking for a better way to manage your customer communication? Check out a conversational customer experience platform built to help.
As the digital revolution changes what’s possible in the world of communication, so customer communication management software is advancing its own capabilities to keep up. Two things in particular to look out for in future are:
Even with watertight processes in place, and the best software at your disposal, ultimately, communication is a human thing. Your team should be ready to go the extra mile to offer the best communication experience to customers – whether that means quickly jumping on a Zoom call, connecting through Skype, or sending a follow up email. Cultivate this open culture and your customers will thank you for it.
Benedict Clark is a psychologist and writer, having previously spent 8 years in the digital marketing industry. With a master's degree in Business and Occupational Psychology from Kingston University, he writes about the interplay between customer experience and psychology for Acquire.