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As part of the ongoing effort to making contact centers more profitable, upselling and cross-selling to customers have frequently been the focus of attention. Companies have had to respond by making themselves available via phone, email, Web self-service, and now even Web 2.0 technologies such as blogs, chat, forums, and wikis. Another benefit to chat in the contact center is that, as customers become more comfortable with this Web 2.0 technology in their own lives, the newest class of agents -- predominantly Generation Y -- are equally conversant in its nuances. That's one place younger workers coming into support centers today have the advantage. They grew up chatting and understand the channel really well.
Contact Centers Chatting to Success No longer simply a forum for teens, chat is becoming an integral part of the cross-sell, upsell, and support strategies run by customer service A s part of the ongoing effort to making contact centers more profitable, upselling and cross-selling to custom- ers have frequently been the focus of attention. But not all customers are created equal, and not everyone likes to interact with contact centers in the same manner. Companies have had to re- spond by making themselves available via phone, email, Web self-service, and now even Web 2.0 technologies such as merce with pleasure for Gen Y. “There’s number of searches, customer profita- blogs, chat, forums, and wikis. no question that having Web chat avail- bility, or agent availability. Talisma Chief “Clearly you look at the older genera- able appeals to end users who are classic Executive Officer Dan Vetras likens it to tions, and in a lot of cases, they want to Generation Y because they text all the a concierge service. “We’re reaching out pick up the phone and talk to a live person time,” explains Conversive Chief Execu- and trying to help,” he says. “That could because that’s what they’re accustomed tive Officer Bob Williams. be traditional customer sup- to,” says Rob Bois, research director at Williams argues that his port, but also cross-selling, “[Younger agents] AMR Research. “Increasingly, it’s the company is taking chat a upselling, and revenue genera- consumer generation that’s demanding step further with Conver- have the advantage. tion as a result.” more and more technology to be incor- sive Live Automation, com- They grew up chatting Another benefit to chat in porated [into] how they’re serviced.” bining automated and live the contact center is that, as and understand the Nowhere is this more prevalent than chat—thereby allowing tech- customers become more com- in Generation Y—born between 1977 nology to handle simple channel really well.” fortable with this Web 2.0 and 1994 and representing approxi- inquiries and escalating technology in their own lives, mately 72.5 million people in America, difficult questions to agents. The solu- the newest class of agents—predomi- according to Census Bureau data, only tion, he adds, doesn’t presuppose nantly Generation Y—are equally con- slightly fewer than the 75.8 million Baby
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