Beyond bots: real conversations for a meaningful customer experience
Survey after survey tells us that customers continue to value their experience at the branch. Perhaps it is because they are reassured by a human. A handshake, a frank conversation about the future, the eye contact, a personal story – these are exchanges that build trust and relationships.
But people aren’t visiting branches very often. According to some estimates, customers expect more than two-thirds of their banking usage to be digital in the next year. Yet, for all the convenience and efficiency of digital banking, customers are telling us something is still missing. As outlined in Unblu’s white paper Beyond Bots, technology has proven to be only half of the equation. In our rush to digitally transform, it seems we’ve tried to automate the human, rather than humanise technology.
Throughout the last decade, banks generally focused on technology as a means to drive efficiency, rather than a tool to connect with the customer personally. As a result, the lack of human contact in the self-service space has created some challenging gaps in support. There are the customers who are left stranded in the middle of an online transaction, without a pathway to human help. Or those who complete a loan application online and go into the branch to finalise the process, only to be told there’s no record of their application. And so on. These scenarios can be easily resolved with conversation.
But bot conversations aren’t the only solution
The financial industry tends to narrowly define conversational banking as chatbot interactions for getting help, discussing finances or even asking for advice. But bots have limited capabilities for the time being and for the foreseeable future. Moreover, a helpful conversation is built on content and context – for which you need humans. We believe that conversational banking is most meaningful when it is an exchange between two people that is augmented by technology to create a truly personal customer experience.
A hybrid approach to conversational banking
When conversational banking is well-implemented, you can truly be present for your customers. When they want to text you a quick question, you can text back, securely and compliantly. When they need financial advice and want to look you in the eye, you can create the same branch visit experience using video and co-browsing features. These interactions should happen within a secure conversation space, asynchronously and naturally, seamlessly building on one another – so they can fit into the daily life of a customer.
A hybrid conversational approach is more effective because it reflects the way customers incorporate banking into their lives. Banking is not a single action. It can’t be completely carried out on mobile, by video, or in person. The customer journey consists of all of these touchpoints and actions, requiring both high tech and high touch. A conversational interface pulls these experiences together, bridging the digital gap with human expertise, delivering the personal touch that customers want. When it’s properly calibrated for human interaction, conversational banking points the way forward for a more supportive, trusting
relationship with customers.
A valuable conversation opens the door to opportunities and builds relationships. Each and every conversation is an opportunity to get to know your customers and be helpful, and ultimately guide them through their financial decisions. Find out how online conversations opens the door to cost-savings, more transactions and stronger relationships.
Unblu a collaboration and engagement software provider that is helping banks dramatically improve the digital customer experience and transform the future of banking.