I have often written in the past about Gig CX not being a replacement for Business Process Outsourcing (BPO) and contact centers. These ideas can co-exist and in many cases we are working with BPOs to create solutions where they build out the heart of a customer service solution and we add the flexibility – this works really well.
But there is a lingering idea in the marketplace that Gig CX is a replacement for an internal contact center or just competes with an outsourced contact center. I’d like to suggest a new idea. There are some areas in the customer journey where Gig CX can complement a traditional customer service strategy and there are many people who love working in a Gig CX environment – they would never work in a contact center.
Think about a classic customer journey:
• Awareness: the customer first learns about your product
• Research: the customer reaches out for more information, either directly to the brand or from social networks and online searches
• Purchase: the customer buys it
• Support: the customer needs help with a problem or has a question
That’s the traditional linear customer journey and in the modern world this is now much more jumbled and circular. Customers are not only searching, comparing, and reading social media and reviews, but also creating all this content too.
But this also means that your customer engagement is now far more often at many different points in the customer journey – not just post-purchase support calls to a contact center. How do you meaningfully engage with a customer that has not purchased anything, but just wants to ask a few questions? Or a loyal customer that keeps getting in touch just because they love engaging with your brand? How do these interactions even fit into your traditional contact center metrics anyway?
What about if you are selling big ticket items? A car, a visit to a luxury resort, a wedding venue, or a property? Imagine the power of introducing a potential customer with questions to an existing or previous customer. You want information on a car and the car manufacturer says ‘here, talk to Dave, he owns that model…’ Or you are thinking of booking an expensive conference suite at a hotel because you are organizing a wedding and the venue introduces you to a customer that used the venue last year.
Think about the level of advocacy this creates. You are offering an impressive level of service to the potential customer, but also involving that advocate network in helping to promote your brand. You can pay them a fixed fee every time they help out or pay them in reward points or create some other form or recognition. It’s up to you, but the actual connectivity can be organized using a platform like LiveXchange.
Imagine how this can improve your engagement throughout the entire customer journey and it complements your existing customer service strategy – you don’t need to replace anything.
You can get some great people on your bench, all batting for your products. People who love your brand and would never think of working 40-hours a week in a contact center. You can find fans on Instagram and ask if they want to help out a few times a week, real experts that know your products inside out. You can tap into the enormous pool of retired citizens with deep knowledge but no desire to spend all day working.
This also offers an opportunity to genuinely embrace diversity and inclusion. We all know that companies talk about diversity on their website, but how many are actively doing something meaningful? If you augment your customer service operation with a Gig CX team then you can hire people far from your neighborhood office. You can hire people that face a physical challenge commuting twice a day, you can use the expertise of people who struggle with non-visible illness by allowing them to contribute without needing to commit to a full day.
Gig CX can augment your existing CX strategy to build an advocacy program that rewards loyal customers and delights potential customers alike.
What do you think of the potential for Gig CX to focus on building a bench of experts and advocates?