1. Conversational apps will be king
Did you know that there are more than two billion WhatsApp users across the globe and counting? Not only this, but 61% of consumers say they already prefer to use instant messaging platforms like this to contact their favourite business, rather than picking up the phone and calling them.
The simple reason for this is because it is easier – through these apps you can check for updates regularly and you typically get a much quicker response time. As such, many businesses are beginning to realise the huge benefits of connecting with their customers in this way.
Chatbots and automated responses aren’t going to cut it in 2022. Instead, conversational apps, in particular WhatsApp, are going to be a crucial part of a company’s customer service and marketing strategies over the coming 12 months and long into the future.
2. Instant gratification is no longer a priority
The pandemic saw huge delays in the shipping of goods across the globe and lots of shortages (or complete unavailability) of everything from food to building materials. Because of this, businesses have had to adapt their customer services to ensure that customers are kept up to date and that they can receive the goods they need, even if the usual range of products isn’t readily available.
This means many consumers have had to learn to be patient and enjoy the experience in the meantime, which seems to have made instant gratification less significant, even if this change may only be temporary.
For businesses in 2022, this means creating a great experience to keep customers happy and engaged, even if they are subject to delays or shortages.
3. Personalisation will be taken to the next level
Personalising the customer experience is something that many businesses are already striving to do, and this looks set to continue in 2022. From targeted email headers and sending SMS to sharing personalised offers, loyalty schemes and more, there are lots of ways that businesses can and should offer a more personalised experience to their customers.
The good news is that by creating detailed customer profiles and using customer data platforms (CDP), businesses will be able to transform their marketing efforts and create intelligent experiences that better serve the customers. This is something that consumers will come to expect in 2022, and should therefore be a key priority.
4. The customer journey will become even more fluid
The customer journey is only going to get more fluid over the next 12 months. Already, brands are seeing customers reach out to them in different ways, across different mediums and devices, and as we move forward, it’s likely that customers are going to hop from one channel to another more than they ever have done before. For example, just because a customer once used your app to place an order or message team with a query, this doesn’t mean they won’t use your website or WhatsApp next time.
So, fluidity of the customer experience is likely to be important for 2022, and businesses need to perfect their omnichannel experiences if they hope to keep up. Not only this, but they need to map out the entire customer journey and lifecycle to understand how to reach and respond to consumers. This is where customer profiles and data tools (particularly those with multi-channel orchestration) will be crucial to keeping ahead of the competition.
5. Customer service teams will become even more comprehensive
Customer service has always played a pivotal role in the customer experience, and this is going to be even more crucial in 2022.
With more focus on customer service operations by most businesses, it’s likely that the customer service team will need to take full ownership of all inbound customer interactions – no matter if online or offline - across all channels. This will include dealing with queries, asking for and responding to feedback, working closely with the marketing team and more.
As such, additional training and tools will need to be implemented if businesses hope to create a comprehensive customer service team and offer the best possible customer experience.
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- Customer Centricity: How to Build a 360-degree Customer View
If you’d like to know more about customer centricity and how you can build a 360° view of your customers, you can check out our comprehensive guide here.
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