Disclaimer: The views expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of the Economic Times – ET Edge Insights, its management, or its members

Insights-In-Conversation-Vinay-Bhartia

To say that the customer is the King in the year 2022, is hardly an overstatement. Today, almost all sectors are client-facing, and the pandemic gave companies an impetus to feel motivated to understand their customers even better. Customers now have an unparalleled number of channels through which to interact with brands and companies, including calls, SMS, social media, email, chat messengers, and more. They frequently switch between different channels to meet their needs.

According to current industry estimates, 73% of consumers switch between an average of 4 channels during their purchasing journey before settling on a product. Customers now anticipate that brand customer service representatives to comprehend their needs and respond to their inquiries quickly across all channels.

In an exclusive interview, we spoke with Vinay Bhartia, Head of Messagebird India, about how companies are investing in tools and technologies to monitor consumer behaviour and give customer service agents the knowledge they need to interact with customers in a seamless manner and offer a customised experience.

How do you believe that your firm has navigated through cPaas industry’s competition?

Every customer, any service provider should be looking at only one thing. The value we can create for them as a business or for them or any enable them to create the value for their customers. At Messagebird, we keep our customer at the center as the fulcrum while identifying their pain points, their problem statements and the solutions or the value our solutions can offer. This has helped us and more importantly helped our customers deliver better value or better offerings to their customers. So, it’s value, not price that one should focus on key industry to any economy.

How have you seen volatility in the retail app market?

We’ve seen in the last few years many ups and downs retail also transformed and not due to COVID or at least fast forwarded the transformation due to unfortunate period of COVID.

You now have a variety of retail touch points, including brick-and-mortar stores, retailers’ apps, marketplaces, and social media sites that double as retail touch points.

In my opinion, Message Bird works closely with its retail clients and gives them the chance to provide services such as product query resolution and customer service support wherever the clientele may be.

Basically, you should stake your business where the client is online instead of urging them to visit a specific thread or channel because there are now several channels available, like you would in a physical store where the customer would want to enter the store. Our firm has helped or we have helped businesses actually take this to the customer. So it’s a belief that if you can take the business where your customer is, you can transform the retail business very easily.

What is the future of communications-as-a-service platform?

Echoing echo what I said earlier is that if can we make it easy for customers to talk to businesses as easy as they would talk to friends, then we have achieved a lot. If I’m on a particular channel and I want to buy a product, I should be able to do that. If I’ve got a delivery scheduled and that I want to change it to two days. But I’m on the road and I have my mobile phone and I have a channel like WhatsApp I should be able to do that.

I should be able to purchase anything if I see an advertisement for it on a social media network rather than visiting the brand website. Therefore, I believe that two-way communication that adheres to the six Cs will be the way of the future. The consumer is in the centre of everything; you communicate with him on his preferred channel and have dialogues with him. Now, one may conduct business with the consumer on the channel of his choice, as well as providing customer care and resulting in customer pleasure, regardless of the question the customer may have.

The future of the cPaas industry will thus be to enable the customer sort of pick which route and what action he wants to take with various firms that he is engaging with on the channel of his choice, according to this arrangement of the five C’s around the main C, which is the client.

This involves a transition from physical to digital, from physical to digital across a variety of channels that he or she has customers on, including social networking platforms and chat channels as well as voice, SMS, and chatbots.

Many of these discussions now lack coherence or context or are siloed.

As a result, we believe and are observing that each of us as customers, as individuals, engages in hundreds of trips or experiences with tens or hundreds of businesses on a daily, weekly, or monthly basis, and this is no longer at a single point of contact with the business.

The key to this success is going to be and we see success is when all of this is synchronized and the customer which is us. We all are able to experience these hundreds of journeys across tens of different brands seamlessly and synchronized across any channel that we want to be. So giving that freedom and flexibility to accustomed customer which is a business customer, to be able to engage with the business wherever and whenever, however he wants or she wants is going to be the key to the future.

Disclaimer: The views expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of the Economic Times – ET Edge Insights, its management, or its members