Beyond the Buzzword: Opti-Channel Engagement
Oh great, you’re thinking, I’m finally getting used to saying “omni-channel” instead of “multi-channel,” and now you’re throwing a new term at me! But if you keep reading, you’ll discover that “opti-channel” is much more than a new buzzword—it’s the next big CX differentiator.
What Is Opti-Channel Engagement?
Opti-channel engagement is the marriage of two of today’s hot topics in customer engagement: journey mapping and big data. In an omni-channel experience (the current best practice), customers should be able to engage with you on their preferred channel at every step along a journey. With an opti-channel engagement strategy, you determine the optimal channel for each customer at each touch point, based on:
- Goals for the specific journey
- Customer information, interaction history, and contextual data
In other words, if you’ve done your homework, you likely know which channel will provide the best experience for each of your customers.
The Right Channel for the Customer
Let’s talk about personalization for a minute. Most companies are using some level of it to tailor messaging, offers, and even escalation opportunities based on context and customer data. Yet not that long ago, it could only be achieved during a one-to-one conversation with a live agent.
Personalization started out as segmentation—grouping customers based on common demographic and psychographic traits into categories like “teenage boys” or “new moms.” Companies then made their best educated guess about the specific marketing and engagement strategies that would work for each group.
The next step was customization, which asked customers to tell companies their preferences for marketing and engagement. Remember the websites and email lists that wanted to “get to know you better” by having you choose your favorite hobbies and interests from a list of 50 possibilities? That was customization.
Finally, we’ve landed on personalization. Companies collect as much data as possible about customers, interactions, purchase history, current context, and more, and use it to tailor marketing and engagement at a one-to-one level.
For a full explanation of Opt-Channel Engagement, including:
- the evolution from multi-channel, to omni-channel, to opti-channel,
- the importance of choosing the right interaction channels,
- and a real-world example,
Check out the original blog post from Astute Solutions.
Tags: consumer care, customer experience, Customer Service, omni-channel, opti-channel