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Today, beyond the technological feats of AI, automation and the cloud, the focus of contact center managers remains customers. This means that selecting a Contact Center as a service (CCaaS) solution that works with existing customer relationship management (CRM) software should be the main focus of every contact center manager. Read on to learn about the competitive edge your organization can get by seamlessly integrating its contact center with its CRM.
As a result of the technological possibilities available to them, customers expect smooth communication with brands across multiple channels and devices, with all interactions linked into one conversation. The diversification of channels (social media, instant messaging, SMS, email, phone) and the rise of conversational agents (bots) has only further increased the pressure to provide a coherent, channel-less experience.
Robust cloud-based Contact Center as a Service (CCaaS) solutions make this possible. Resilient and easy to implement, they have also proven effective at swiftly adjusting to customer volumes, providing the necessary scalability to deal with peaks and valleys as they develop.
How? Because one of the key driving forces behind cloud CCaaS solutions is up-to-date, high-quality data leveraged to better understand customers and prospects alike. And with the acceleration of cloud adoption, contact center managers know that collecting, managing and operationalizing data has never been more important.
But where does this data come from? The answer is simple: most of it should already be present in your CRM database!
What is a CRM? Customer relationship management (CRM), in the words of globally-leading cloud-based customer relationship management service provider Salesforce, is “any tool, strategy, or process that helps businesses better organize and access customer data.” A CRM solution enhances an organization’s operations by concentrating on interactions with customers through service-related issues, direct and indirect sales, and forecasting and analysis of behaviors. It enables the elevation of the customer experience (CX) in four key areas: sales, marketing, customer service and digital commerce. However, a CRM is only as good as the data in its database, and it is therefore critical to ensure that this data is both readily available and reliable.
Today, with research indicating that 86% of buyers are willing to pay more for a great CX, contact center managers know that operationalizing their organization’s data is the key to keeping pace with ever-rising customer demands. Regardless of their industry, organizations must therefore use dependable contact center solutions that integrate with their CRM software.
The integration of a CRM with a CCaaS solution typically follows a four-step plan:
The integration of a CRM with a CCaaS solution results in benefits for customers and contact center agents alike. Intuitive tools that not only encourage agents to be more engaged in their work, but also help them perform at higher levels through enhanced access to information such as customer views and up-to-the-minute data. Customers are rewarded with memorable interactions as a result of the improved service they receive.
Improved relationships with a brand can deliver bottom line benefits to the business and mean not only higher retention rates, but also increased reputational prestige resulting from a best-in-class customer experience that increases loyalty and drives revenue.
With customer expectations changing, contact center managers need to adopt customer-centric strategies. In this regard, the most significant development in consumer behavior is connected to voice, which is fast becoming the most important medium of customer-brand communication, on top of being the most important one for customer service via phone channel.
Research from decision behavior agency Skim Group shows that 40% of American, British and German users have made at least one purchase via a digital assistant on their smartphone or smart speaker. Indeed, the proliferation of voice assistants is staggering, with the 4.2 billion in use in 2020 set to increase to 8.4 billion in 2024. Voicebots have proven adept at understanding customers’ needs, delivering an engaging customer experience. It is abundantly clear that as voice channels gain in popularity through IVR and phone use, contact center agents must have access to the rich set of data unlocked by combining CRM and CCaaS technologies to deliver excellent customer experience on the voice channel.
With success helping over 150,000 companies around the world grow their business, Salesforce is considered the global CRM provider of choice. Considered a pioneer of Software as a Service (SaaS) solutions, it is renowned for its native deployments, automatic new versioning and expertise of digital channels.
In need of voice channel capabilities, Salesforce has turned to Odigo, a leader in CCaaS solutions, named a Visionary in the 2021 Gartner Magic Quadrant for Contact Center as a Service for the second consecutive year, since 2013. Odigo’s open CTI with Salesforce, currently used by 3,000 agents, not only delivers interactive voice response (IVR) capabilities, but can also:
Both companies have worked together on Salesforce’s product line ‘Service Cloud Voice’, which sees advanced integration through the bring your own telephony (BYOT) option. This gives organizations greater flexibility as they can select a provider of their choosing or keep their existing telephony solution for voice channel features, including phone call transcriptions and customized IVRs.
On October 13th, Odigo participated in the AppInnovation 2021 event dedicated to ISVs in the Salesforce ecosystem. Odigo’s experts hosted an English-language webinar entitled “Choose the winning integration between your Salesforce CRM and your Odigo CCaaS solution” and a roundtable in French entitled “AI and natural language as performance levers for customer relationship”.
2022 research commissioned by Odigo sees overwhelming support for the claim that AI investments improve the customer experience. The vast majority of respondents also stress that AI is a long-term investment and takes time to properly integrate and deliver maximum ROI.
WhatsApp Business has emerged as a method of brand communication that has a high open rate compared to email, works more rapidly, and targets multiple points of the customer journey. It delivers interactive options for customers that add value and targets them on a familiar channel, which is why WhatsApp is an indispensable addition to contact center solutions.
Outbound calls can be a great way for organizations to reach out and build loyalty or anticipate and provide for potential customer needs. However, some outdated practices have created negative associations for customers. As a result, guidance and outbound call regulations have been developed both for the purpose of protection and to steer contact center best practices. What do organizations need to consider when using outbound calls to deliver additional value to customers, and how does geographical location affect that?