Why Branded, In-App Messaging is a Winning Care Channel

Dave Evans & Phil Garbrecht

First it was Facebook. Then it was Twitter. Then Instagram, Pinterest, and who knows what’s next? Whether or not your marketing and care teams want to be on each new social media network that pops up, your customers expect to talk to you there. This creates a major challenge for large brands: these asynchronous conversations often happen in a channel that wasn’t built for customer care, and worse, you neither own nor control it.

The “social media two-step”

Although social media is increasingly where customers expect to do business, it wasn’t built with that need in mind. Picture this: a customer posts on your social media page because their product isn’t working. This common customer care issue often requires both a public and private response to truly be considered “handled.”

Although customers post publicly and expect to receive help on social media, the channels weren't built to easily accommodate this.

First and foremost, it’s important to publicly acknowledge that you’ve received the complaint by replying to the message to take action. But once this is done, to truly remedy the issue, an agent may need to ask about an order number or billing information — not the kind of thing that belongs in a public channel but instead requires a separate, private channel. All social media care teams are familiar with the “social media two-step” of moving customers from public to private channels.

And it gets worse: After switching from public to private, many care cases require an actual authentication, and that means a call-back or (to the customer’s dismay) email. If the issue arose as a public post, the customer would by now have been moved three times – from a public page, to a direct message, to the phone or email. Not only is this expensive, but taking a customer out of the channel she selected lowers satisfaction with the resolution process. So you lose on all counts.

Why in-app messaging matters

If your customers readily adopt and use your mobile app — which is already so often the case in travel & hospitality, banking, and communication services verticals — then adding a true messaging experience to your mobile app is a clear winner.

In case after case where customers have built Khoros’ in-app messaging service into their phones, the results have been dramatic: an almost immediate switch by high-value customers away from public social media and toward a secure, trusted, and branded messaging channel. In the process, costs are reduced as call-backs and other off-channel communications are minimized, and customer satisfaction — measured in-channel — climbs.

Consider Sprint’s story as an example: Sprint knew it needed a support channel that allowed their 50 million customers to feel their information was secure. Additionally, Sprint wanted the channel to be branded, to show customers they would receive the same level of service they’ve come to expect from the brand on traditional care channels.

After implementing Khoros Brand Messenger’s Secure Transfer, Sprint now assists customers in a single, unified PII-compliant platform. And the results speak for themselves: 62% of customers remain in-channel through issue resolution and 70% of customers express positive sentiment with Sprint’s branded in-app messaging as a result.

By introducing branded in-app messaging, Sprint saw positive sentiment from 70% of customers contacting customer service.

Customer care is one part of the customer experience, but it is so often a make or break moment in that experience. After one negative experience, the majority (51%) of customers will never do business with that company again. But on the other hand, 70% of U.S. consumers are willing to spend more money to do business with a company that delivers great service. How much more? For example, millennials are willing to spend 21% more.

Your ability to deliver great customer service is what your customers will judge you on. In-app messaging allows customers to receive timely assistance without needing to switch between multiple channels.

How Khoros can help

Adding Khoros Brand Messenger’s in-app messaging to your mobile app is straightforward: Khoros provides an SDK for both Android and iOS, and we offer technical support and development assistance if requested. This means time-to-market, and more importantly time-to-value, is short. Like 30 days or less short — and always under the control of your mobile development team.

If you’re ready to add a branded, contemporary messaging experience to you mobile app then simply connect with your Account Executive and ask about Brand Messenger’s In-app messaging SDK. If you’re not currently a Khoros Care customer, but want to learn more, request a demo here. All-Ways Connected, in the palm of your hand.

Want to learn more about delivering great customer care at scale? Download our whitepaper: 7 Customer Service Strategies for Highly Effective Teams.

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