Remember that famous Nineteen Eighty-Four-inspired Apple Super Bowl ad, the one with the rows of pale drones watching Big Brother on the big screen? When the female athlete runs with her hammer and swings it at the screen, she ushers in a new era – thus the Macintosh launched, and the rest, as they say, is history. There’s a lot to unpack in that ad, but what I like to think that athlete represents is innovation, and the screen she breaks through with her hammer is the boundaries of what is “normal” and accepted; what everyone else is doing. I’ve been seeing a lot of repetition these days, from service offerings, to web design to keynote presentations. Many organizations have fallen victim to the “business as usual” mindset which is a dangerous place to find comfort in the fast-pace digital age. It’s time to shake things up and find a new and authentic way of doing things.
In one of our recent episodes of The Ecom Edge, Sergio Iacobucci, eCommerce Marketing Manager at Coveo, and Cate Trotter, Head of Trends at Insider Trends debate topics like, “Where should retailers start if they want to become more innovative?” and “What should retailers’ top priority be as they prepare for the future?”. Tune in to Episode 5: Future of Retail to hear what they have to say!
Enacting change can be difficult. It’s normal, our brains like predictability and patterns because they feel safe. But safe is not going to cut it in today’s market and what worked yesterday may not work today. Simply put: the ‘business as usual’ mindset is killing innovation and allowing your competitors to win over the hearts and dollars of your valued customers. Fortunately, the tools and technology you need to break free and innovate are within reach.
Harnessing AI and machine learning enables you to drive innovation across your organization by making sense of the herculean pile of data that continues to grow by the day. Understanding what your data is telling you allows you to make the best, most informed business decisions that will make customers happier, empower your team to be more proficient, and fuel the growth of your company for years to come.
Better yet, machine learning provides the automation horsepower to deliver unique, tailored content to individuals – be they prospects, customers, or your own teams – at scale. And the more data that can be gleaned from interactions across your systems of engagement, like your websites, portals, e-stores, etc., the better the automated recommendations.
Help Customers Help Themselves
When it comes to customer support, a “business as usual” customer journey might look something like this:
Step 1: Your customers come to your website for answers
Step 2: They can’t find what they need within a few clicks
Step 3: They turn to your customer community to see if someone in there can help
*Sound of crickets chirping*
Step 4: Frustrated, they either open a support ticket or call your contact centre for help
Step 5: Your support agents ask your customers to explain the situation they’re in, with no visibility into the customers’ recent interactions prior to the call and frustration escalates
For today’s tech-savvy, relevance-seeking customers, that strategy just won’t cut it any longer. In the digital age, customers expect instant, seamless and personalized interactions. It’s unwise to be complacent and assume that your customers will just accept a subpar experience. In fact, by 2020 89% customers will shift to companies providing better customer experience and engagement. So, what can you do to innovate your support strategy?
Recent advancements in AI and machine learning for the enterprise are fundamentally changing the way leading organizations are approaching support from the very first customer touchpoint. By implementing AI-powered search and recommendations, your customer journey can look more like this:
- Step 1: Your customers come to your website for answers
- Step 2: Machine learning capabilities suggest relevant information, based on what you know of them and others like them, and they’re able to successfully self-serve, reducing the amount of case creation
- Step 3: They turn to your customer community to tell other customers how helpful your resources were in solving their queries *Customers evolve into advocates*
- Step 4: Proactive recommendations lead your customers to information they didn’t even know they needed but proves to be extremely valuable.
- Step 5: Your frictionless and personalized customer experience has enticed your customers to spend more and tell their friends about your product or service
To learn more about how AI-powered search and recommendations can breed innovation and drive lifetime value, enjoy our white paper:
Empower Your Staff
When it comes to innovation, customer experience and overall satisfaction are usually top of mind, and rightfully so. Where would you be without your customers, after all? However, an often overlooked but equally important aspect to your innovation strategy is your employee experience.
We’re in the midst of a major talent shortage which is expected to get worse before it gets better. With that said, there has been a major power shift, putting employees in the driver’s seat and allowing them to be very selective about the organization they work for and the conditions they’re willing to accept. In such a competitive landscape, an unrivalled employee experience ensures you have top talent on board which will inevitably drive future innovation and growth of your company — but they need to be empowered to do their jobs well.
Your employees bring with them the same consumer-like. The best way to drive engagement and proficiency among your employees is to offer them an intuitive, relevant experience, like they’re used to with the brands they regularly engage with using AI-powered search and recommendations. Driven by rich usage analytics, Coveo Machine Learning recommends the content your employees are most likely to need next, based on what has worked for employees who were in similar situations. Essentially, our machine learning capabilities analyze your employees’ search and navigation patterns, understands which results and content lead to successful outcomes and automatically adjusts future search results so the most relevant results, according to their context and intent in that moment, always rise to the top.
With access to the right information at the right time, your teams can collaborate better together, build on each others’ knowledge and experience and make more informed business decisions that will keep your organization ahead of your competitors. What’s more, with access to a holistic view of your customers’ journey, you can enhance your customer experience at every touchpoint, from your website, to your contact centre, straight through to sales and customer success.
Interested in learning more about facilitating innovation in your workplace? Check out our webinar How the Intelligent Workplace will Change Your Company.
Plan for Tomorrow’s Growth
Technological breakthroughs, industry “disruptions,” and rapid changes in customer habits have become the norm. We don’t know exactly what tomorrow will look like, but one thing is for certain: you cannot future-proof your organization on yesterday’s tactics.
The reality is, a “business as usual” mindset is stunting your organization’s growth. By the time anything becomes “the usual”, there’s a good chance you’re already behind. AI and machine learning afford you the ability to be innovative in delivering more relevant information to prospects, customers and your employees – ahead of your competitors.
Imagine a world in which your organization scales with AI automating simple, repeatable tasks, freeing up your employees to work on more complex and fulfilling problems. Or how leveraging machine learning to match your buyer personas with the right product recommendations at the right time would increase conversions. Or perhaps how much you’d save on training by having an efficient and accessible knowledge base.
AI is Not the Future, AI is Now
AI is no longer an abstract idea, it is proving to be a serious game changer for early adopters and yet a “business as usual” mindset is keeping many organizations small and will ultimately be their demise. In fact, a new study proves that fear pervades executives’ digital transformation efforts. The survey of 450 executives, published by Couchbase, showed that ninety-five percent of IT leaders or CIOs say they view digital transformation as “an insurmountable task.”
Coveo takes the guesswork out and manages the heavy lifting, allowing organizations to focus on what really matters: the individuals. Coveo’s AI-powered search and recommendations ensures that every interaction counts, empowering both your customers and employees to forge their own paths and blaze the trails of innovation for you.
Remember the old Super Bowl ad? Hammers are swinging and walls are coming down. While the future of your organization is unwritten, there’s no doubt that with AI-powered search and recommendations, it looks pretty bright.
Learn more about our turnkey solution and the art of the possible in our video Coveo Machine Learning explained.