By: Andy Wilkins, founder of Futr
Technology has evolved incredibly quickly over the last two years. We’ve sought quicker and better ways to keep businesses running as they battled the pressures of Covid-19, Brexit, inflation increases, supply chain problems and more. It’s not been an easy two years and the end is not yet in sight, so how are tech firms working to bring about new ways of supporting business’ successes?
The key business trend that is going to dominate 2022 is customer segmentation. More specifically, how businesses better subdivide their customers using technology to provide a more personalised service and greater stakeholder satisfaction.
Futr is in the business of artificial intelligence and this is the number one priority for our development teams right now. We’ve been working on ways to make our AI solutions more integrated and more intelligent to help companies accelerate the pace of their segmentation journeys.
Segmentation for consumer markets
Bespoke experiences are the pinnacle of consumer experience. Being able to rapidly funnel consumers down specific sales routes depending on a number of factors allows brands to offer a near-individualised service. We’ve observed luxury brands deliver this with great success and now technology is developing to allow high street retailers and direct to consumer brands to offer the same type of luxury experience but without an incredibly high investment in technology and systems.
AI has the power to completely transform the customer experience by making it easy to segment customers based on almost any metric, including customer lifetime value (CLV), and current behaviours, through to channel preference. This means that each customer can experience a more personalised contact.
Customer segmentation—through technology— is really important for consumer brands to leverage. By delivering a personalised service to loyal customers or those with greater propensity to spend, vendors can increase Average Order Value (AOV), which ultimately increases revenue.
AI technology holds the key to consumer-facing brands being able to implement this at speed and at an attractive price.
Service customer segmentation
While this is attractive for consumer brands seeking to maximise sales, it will be absolutely vital for public sector organisations and charities— who will be better able to rapidly funnel and categorise inbound enquiries based on urgency or customer need. The least complex and least emotional interactions would migrate to self-service, allowing higher emotional interactions to be supported across a spectrum of channels, like live chat. Great customer value will be created by understanding what interactions have the most emotional value allowing organisations to provide the right touch at the right time.
Trigger words and phrases, typical communication patterns, customer lifetime contact logs and so on will all inform an AI response, channelling enquiries down various lines depending on need.
Key to all of this, of course, is a hyper intelligent tool that can not only understand a user but recognise nuances in communication and tone, as well as slang, similes and metaphors to categorise inbound enquiries appropriately. Our dev teams are investing an enormous amount of time in creating AI tech that can do this unfailingly.
This type of segmentation could hold the key to a shift in how our emergency services tackle call volume, for example. By allowing an intelligent segmentation of enquiries we can reach a place where those most in need are prioritised in the 999 call centre.
Multi-channel stays high on the agenda
Multi-channel is not going anywhere. As brands and businesses seek to move into omni or opti channel approaches (where customers receive a seamless experience from platform to platform and where the most appropriate platform is automatically served to a customer, respectively) the demand for technology that enables this will remain high.
Just as multi-channel remains popular, multi-language will stay important. Again for both B2B and consumer brands this is increasingly important given our increasingly multicultural modern society. Enabling customers to converse in their preferred language regardless of the business’ internal ability is a key step in offering a thoughtful personalised approach.
So we have multi-channel and multi-language – next is multi-format! Being able to integrate video consultations and communications into native channels (social media, WhatsApp, websites etc.) is also going to be on the agenda for brands in 2022.
Tools that allow conversations in multiple languages at the touch of a button, or enable video consultation in a native platform will be popular as personalisation of customer interactions tops the ‘must-have’ list this year.