When it comes to delivering excellent customer service, brands nowadays have numerous channels at their disposal–some of which didn’t even exist a decade ago. Omnichannel strategy has gradually become the rule rather than the exception as a competitive differentiator among brands, with live chat rivaling social media platforms as a preferred customer engagement channel. And within the realm of live chat is a sometimes neglected yet steadily growing channel that’s been around for awhile but not fully exploited in customer engagement: video.Given the highly visual nature of popular media platforms such as Facebook, Instagram, and even Twitter (don’t forget its photo and video attachments), as well as the popularity of video for personal communication (Skype and FaceTime, for example), video is an ideal channel for customer engagement. Indeed, Gartner predicts that more than 100 of the 500 largest global companies will introduce video chat by 2018 for customer service, and studies have shown that visual information is processed much faster than text. Video can be used to engage customers in three main areas:Use video to deliver excellent customer service. Through video chat, agents can deliver a highly personalized, real-time customer service experience. By being able to see customers’ emotional expressions, agents can use these cues to tailor their tone and general approach to the customers’ needs, while customers can see an agent’s empathetic response in return. In short, video chat allows for greater communication through its humanized nature. Customers will save time, retain information more effectively through such tools as screen sharing, and ultimately feel greater satisfaction with a brand that provides a human touch and a seamless, engaged customer experience. In addition to providing frequently asked questions on a company website, companies may also use video to educate customers by offering video customer support. Providing videos with answers to FAQs featuring actual people is a great way to connect with customers for a more personal experience, while animated videos can likewise increase the aesthetic appeal of a brand through clear yet clever storytelling. Videos may also be used as tutorials offering solutions to issues with detailed visuals to guide the support process. In any case, customers are more likely to retain critical information while having a superior, more engaged experience.Make video a power tool for marketing. Consumers nowadays are genuinely interested in understanding a brand’s story, especially if there’s a noble or compelling one to tell. Sharing a story about a small family-run business turning into a larger corporation with eco-friendly business practices can attract customers’ interest and ultimately their loyalty, as can a brand’s commitment to working with charitable organizations. A 2014 Nielsen study found that 55% of global online consumers across 60 countries were willing to pay more for products or services offered by brands committed to positive social and environmental impact. These stories should therefore be featured in company-produced videos and featured prominently on the brand website and social media platforms. Videos may also be used as advertisements to demonstrate how products and services work, making a brand more accessible to potential customers. Lastly, brands can deliver a strong message about their values and accomplishments through news clips, testimonials, and interviews highlighting the company.Bring out the brand advocates with user-generated videos. Satisfied customers often like to share their feelings on social media (as do unhappy customers!), and many share photos or videos endorsing their favorite brands. Indeed, a Forbes study found that 81% of the customers surveyed indicated that social media posts of friends and family influenced their purchase decisions, while 78% of respondents claimed that a company’s social media posts impacted their purchase decisions. The takeaway? In addition to great social media customer service, brands should engage customers on these sites and encourage them to share their own content when they are satisfied with a brand. Companies may even offer rewards or competitions for user-generated videos and use video as a medium for brand advocacy and increased social engagement.Video offers tremendous opportunities for brands to engage, educate, and serve current and potential customers alike, increasing customer satisfaction and fostering brand loyalty. Learn about Vocalcom contact center software solutions for excellent video support.
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