Video chat as a method of communication enables organizations to deflect service issues, facilitate customer self-service, and handle customer interactions. Other benefits for businesses include lower travel costs and profits gained from offering video chat as part of customer service. The intangible benefits include the simplification of group work among geographically distant team members and a stronger sense of community among business contacts, both within and between companies. In groups, users can chat, transfer files, share programs, and send and receive graphic data from remote locations. More personally, the face-to-face connection adds non-verbal communication to the exchange and allows team members to develop a stronger sense of familiarity with individuals they may never actually meet.
VARs can help companies establish video chat as a part of their overall communication strategy in the following ways:
- Formulate a strategy – Companies may have diverse goals to accomplish while deploying video chat, such as deflecting call volumes or increasing acquisitions. Whatever the goal, understanding and detailing the strategy is important. For instance, diverting volumes from traditional channels such as voice and email to video chat can result in significant cost savings for businesses, with improvement in the overall customer experience. VARs can help customers determine what they want to use video chat for and what the desired outcome of video chat will be.
- Uncover who needs video chat – Determining which employees and customers need help is important to achieving required results. Today, there are video chat tools that offer analytics features that can be used to determine effectiveness. By determining who needs access to video chats, why, and what the expected results are, organizations are likely to be much more successful in rolling out video chat.
- Invest in training – Training contact center agents so that they are equipped to handle customer queries and resolve customer issues is a given today, but organizations should invest in training agents to meet critical video chat-related capabilities, such as communication and etiquette. Best practices should be mapped to the entire agent lifecycle from the time an agent is recruited. It also becomes important for companies to document their best practices for easy implementations. These not only help drive efficiencies, but also improve customer experience. Ensuring that chat agents have the right resources is critical to the success any video chat deployment.
- Use the technology wherever it is needed – Imagine this scenario: A customer contacts an agent who sends video links demonstrating the resolution of the issue. The customer now finds his issue easier to understand. In a sales scenario, the agent could show the product through video chat, rather than describe its features in a “text-only” reply, thereby showcasing the product more effectively. Team members in different locations can use video chat to collaborate on projects, get to know each other, and see facial expressions and body language. Not only does the customer experience improve, but ROI for the organization can also grow incrementally.
VARs can use this checklist to help customers develop strategies for implementing video chat, both in the call center and the general work environment. Organizations that use forward-thinking technology will be successful today and even more successful in the future because both the employee and client base will consist mostly of millennials who are used to using video chat to conduct business.
Are there other video chat topics that should be included in this forum? Please comment below.