by Kerry Doyle
It’s long been a truism that holding on to existing customers is more cost effective than finding new ones. Today, that’s truer than ever. It’s also harder than ever, now that customers can gather product comparisons instantly, shop from anywhere, and change brand preferences with the click of a keypad.
“I know only a few ways to take market share and drive new revenue,” says Oracle CEO Mark Hurd. “I can engineer better products and services, I can build better relationships with my customers and deliver a higher level of service, or I can give my customers a lower price…Improving service is typically the quickest way that I can take market share.”
So in this age of digitally enabled defection, how do you provide the kind of service that makes customers so happy they not only continue to buy new products from you but also become de facto brand ambassadors by sharing their experience with others? Fortunately, that is becoming easier for those companies far enough along on the path toward digital transformation themselves—especially if they can unify sales and service information and capabilities in a single application, providing customers a truly personalized and holistic experience at any touchpoint.
“In terms of the empowered consumer, the expectation is for a one-stop experience, to either get service help from a salesperson or to buy something that’s needed from a service representative,” says Des Cahill, Oracle Vice President and Head Customer Experience (CX) Evangelist.
Enter Oracle Engagement Cloud—a new application within Oracle Customer Experience Cloud (Oracle CX Cloud) that unifies sales and service capabilities in the same application, available on the same screen.
Oracle Engagement Cloud, introduced at Oracle OpenWorld 2016, augments the sales force automation and modern sales performance management of Oracle Sales Cloud with key service capabilities, enabling salespeople to offer services and enabling support agents to cross-sell products. These unified sales and service capabilities set Oracle Engagement Cloud apart by enabling a company to break down information barriers between departments so that employees can have informed, one-stop interactions with high-value customers.
Consider these scenarios:
- A customer visits the wealth manager at a local bank to discuss a mortgage refinance. In addition to starting the loan-origination process, the wealth manager also quickly tracks the status of a reissued ATM card, removes late fees on a credit card, and issues the customer a new set of checks, performing services that normally would require multiple contacts with different associates.
- An IT manager at a large business contacts a customer support line at the business’s computer hardware provider to complain about defective merchandise. Since the service representative can see that the client is a long-time, high-spending customer with several large orders in process, she not only offers her customer an expedited shipment of replacement products but also is able to up-sell the customer an expedited product replacement contract.
In both of those cases, the agent has access to information that allows intelligent up-sell and cross-sell opportunities from a single application based on a unified view of sales and service. Oracle Engagement Cloud displays what business the customer has done with the company, what transactions he or she has underway, what support he or she received, and what service tickets are open. These capabilities enable a “blended agent” role that not only gives customers the one-stop experience they wish for but allows the company to convert back-office staff from cost assets into selling assets, generating more revenue for the firm while also providing a better experience for the customer.
Good for the Customer = Good for the Company
A major global automotive manufacturer is just one example of a business turning service interactions into sales opportunities. The company currently maintains over 10,000 dealerships around the globe with hundreds of its own service agents. It was struggling with the data disconnect between dealership transactions and support center interactions. The company adopted Oracle CX Cloud to unify that data.
“Now, whether someone’s calling the dealership or the support line, there’s a complete picture of that customer and a consistent customer experience can be delivered,” says Cahill. “By unifying sales and service capabilities and improving customer experience, this brand is generating tens of thousands of incremental new marketing leads from service contacts. What could be better than that? Happier customers and a growth in business.”
Oracle Engagement Cloud makes that true 360-degree view easier than ever.
This was originally published on Forbes channel. Read the article, “Delivering More Than Customer Service With The Cloud” on Forbes here.