The cost of poor customer service is enormous, modern consumers are reluctant to do business with companies that offer poor customer service. In contrast, successful innovative businesses are competing to deliver superior customer service experiences.
Bad customer service can be detrimental to one’s business. This could include automated self-service, long wait times, poor attention and inexperienced agents.
Pete Matthaei, BrandChat director and co-founder, believes the best way of improving customer service is by being immediately accessible via instant messaging platforms. “Companies should realise the true impact of bad customer service and its effect on customer loyalty and satisfaction,” he says.
BrandChat is a platform designed to allow businesses and their customers to interact with each other on a personal level. It integrates multiple messaging platforms including WeChat, Facebook, Telegram and Kik, allowing the end user to interact with a number of businesses via a preferred platform.
“Imagine being able to open your favourite chat app like Facebook Messenger or WeChat and start a customer support conversation with the business right there. No hold times, no transfers and it uses little or no airtime,” he says.
There are already a number of prominent businesses active on the platform with rapidly growing communities. These include Standard Bank, Zando, News 24, eNCA and OrderIn among many others.
Matthaei says it is crucial that businesses effectively respond to customers when they do complain. “Customers can be very demanding but, with an effective response, it is still possible to obtain a more loyal customer afterwards – than you had before they experienced the problem.”
BrandChat has built a unified dashboard that allows businesses to create and manage a bot as well as do their customer support across all supported chat apps in one place. It has also developed tools that enable businesses to create engaging additional content inside chat apps. This could include broadcasting special offers or the latest news, or even getting feedback via polls and surveys.
“Consumers can enquire about products and even chat about any brand-related topic instantly and seamlessly, like chatting to a friend on a chat platform,” says Matthaei.
Since its inception in 2015, BrandChat has managed to attract 1,9-million users and will continue to grow as it expands its capabilities. The platform will soon integrate with WhatsApp.
“We want to make it as simple and natural to get in touch with a business as it is to get in touch with friends. Starting a chat is quicker than downloading an app, more immediate and cheaper than making a phone call, and simpler than figuring out a complex Web site,” he says.
“The service includes an ability to create and manage chatbots on the integrated platforms. More messaging platforms will be added as they open up API access to commercial accounts,” he concludes.