Customer expectations are evolving and digital communication often dictates how consumers interact with service providers. According to HubSpot, 58% of customers expect brands to make them feel heard, appreciated and valued. What better way to meet your customers' expectations than engaging them consistently?
Customer engagement platforms need flexible tools that enable their clients to serve targeted content, resolve concerns and collect feedback in efforts to make customers feel heard, appreciated and valued.
To meet customers’ growing expectations, engagement platforms must use reliable infrastructure so they can deliver high-quality services to brands. This is where communication APIs come in. With the right APIs, customer engagement providers can focus on optimizing features without worrying about platform stability. Here, we’ll provide three examples of API-driven customer engagement tools that you can add to your platform.
1. Host live customer support and sales conversations with Video APIs
Video is an integral part of digital communications. From social media to conferencing to streaming platforms, video is embedded in our lives and daily interactions.
In the business world, video is used across telehealth, remote learning, technical support and other industries. Brands also use video to speed up talent acquisition and improve agent productivity in contact centers. Most importantly, customers expect contact centers to focus on video, according to 53% of U.S. managers. Video meeting applications paired with screen sharing and recording features help support staff quickly identify customer issues. This makes them more equipped to provide solutions in real-time so customers feel immediately heard and prioritized.
However, not all video conferencing solutions are created the same. Some solutions are fast and intuitive; they have a low learning curve and individuals of varying technical skills regularly use these applications. But do these apps meet the demands of customer engagement platforms?
Platforms require video solutions that are reliable, high-quality and flexible so they can be configured to meet business needs. Out-of-the-box (OOTB) solutions may present quality issues such as network latency, lag and packet loss. These issues interrupt calls and are frustrating for both customers and employees.
To mitigate quality concerns, customer engagement platforms must look for configurable video APIs that operate on private networks. Private networks bypass congestion on the public internet, resulting in secure, crystal clear calls.
Video APIs are also customizable and may include accessibility functions, recording, screen sharing and options to control streams, making it possible to build a video solution according to your customers’ needs.
2. Collect customer feedback surveys with SMS APIs
Customer feedback is valuable to any business because it enables brands to improve products and services while creating relevant content for customers. A survey is a tried-and-tested way to measure customer satisfaction, whether via Net Promoter Score® or ad-hoc feedback. Though valuable, surveys are a double-edged sword—they can produce low-quality data but have high response rates if they're targeted at the right audience and distributed in the right channels.
SMS yields high open and response rates, especially with younger audiences; in fact, 75% of millennials prefer it for deliveries, promotions and surveys. However, SMS comes with a caveat. International texting laws govern electronic communication and breaking SMS rules may thwart opportunities to communicate with your customers. There are also local and regional messaging laws that all businesses must comply with.
When building your customer engagement platform, look for a communications provider with deep SMS expertise, licensed operator status and number availability to ensure high deliverability rates. If you're looking to integrate texting, you won't just need a team of regulatory experts; you'll also need a reliable SMS API to add texting functionality into your app.
3. Automate customer service with conversational AI
The increase in customer inquiries during the COVID-19 pandemic illustrates the importance of customer support within business operations. At the beginning of the pandemic, customers reported record wait times as they attempted to contact service providers. Companies, on the other hand, scrambled to support their customers as inquiries and concerns skyrocketed.
Though 51% of customers expect a business to be available 24/7, most companies don’t have the resources or staff to operate around the clock. Therefore, businesses must turn to automation to engage customers and augment their services. Conversational AI tools help ease the burden on call centers, save costs and optimize operations for any use case.
These tools often come in the form of chatbots. A chatbot uses artificial intelligence and natural language processing to simulate human conversations by interpreting, automating and responding to customer questions. Business leaders have seen positive results with chatbots and many have reported a 67% increase in sales.
Customer engagement platform providers that offer automated, intelligent, conversational experiences can expect to win more business. For example, Conversational AI provider Replicant helped call centers scale to meet pandemic-induced demand. Communications providers, such as Telnyx, offer voice APIs with speech-to-text transcription and other functionality that make it easy to build intelligent experiences into your software.
Consolidate your customer engagement tools with a communications provider
With the number of customer engagement platforms in the market, distinguishing your brand from competitors can be challenging. What becomes critical then, is choosing a communications provider that’ll help you add new capabilities to your platform quickly and securely.
Here are a few questions you should consider when choosing a communications provider.
- Does the communications provider offer migration support? Switching providers can be complicated, but it doesn’t have to be. A good communications provider will help scope and plan your migration, with dedicated switching APIs to ensure everything runs smoothly.
- Is this a communications provider or a customer engagement platform? CPaaS providers who were previously selling to engagement platforms are now building engagement apps to compete in the space. When researching providers, look for a partner who's building universal, future-forward communication, not competing with customers.
Elevate your customer interactions with Telnyx
Telnyx elevates your customer interactions with global voice, video and messaging APIs and licensed carrier expertise. We support customer engagement platforms by delivering a reliable, private network for real-time communications. Most importantly, we’re focused on building the world's connectivity layer, not competing with your product.
Ready to consolidate your customer engagement tools with secure and reliable APIs? Contact a member of our team today.