If U.S. Media and Entertainment (M&E) businesses want to start 2019 with a competitive advantage, investing in customer service and customer experience (CX) should be their new year’s resolution.

The 2018 American Consumer Satisfaction Index (ACSI) Telecommunications Report showed levels of customer satisfaction in the Media and Entertainment industry are falling even as the quality of content being broadcast is hitting an all-time high.

Customer satisfaction is falling

The ACSI found that the average satisfaction score for established subscription TV providers has fallen by 3.1 percent to 62 (its lowest score this decade) and that it’s in the areas of contact centers, website understanding and navigation and clarity of billing where customers have the biggest problems.

“Very few customers will reach immediately for the phone when they have a problem,” explains Geoffrey Boulakia, General Manager, EMEA, TSC, Sitel Group’s Digital CX agency. “They are more likely to try and solve it themselves by using search engines, self-care tools and your company website. Therefore, if they can’t help themselves and are forced to call the contact center, these simplest of issues potentially become a moment of truth.”

Customers want the tools to help themselves

According to Aspect Software, 73 percent of U.S. consumers want the tools to be able to solve problems on their own. Nuance research into the subject finds that 75 percent of consumers, globally find self-service to be the most convenient way of solving their problems. This shouldn’t come as a surprise for organizations. Consumers value speed of resolution above all when rating a brand’s CX.

“Providing rich, easy to find and easy to understand self-help content will empower your customers and take pressure off your contact center.” Boulakia points out. “With low-value calls deflected your agents are free to focus on delivering value and really using their human skills to make a difference for customers.”

Start slowly but constantly improve

It can begin with simple things like a clear, searchable FAQ section and can be developed further to include a knowledge base, how-to videos and tutorials and even a basic decision-tree powered chatbot for instant responses to the most searched for questions.

“But it can never stop! Providing self-help tools isn’t a one-shot deal,” warns Boulakia. “They must be constantly improved and updated in line with your products and services and through analysing previous customer interactions. The goal is being proactive, not reactive. If you’re in a reactive mode, all you can do is respond to a customer complaint. You’re not in the driver’s seat.”

And don’t forget about voice

In addition to updating the information, brands need to think about updating how self-help content is accessed. More consumers already search via mobile than desktop so your services must be optimized for smartphone screens and swipe-and-tap navigation.

What’s more, soon this content will need to be suitable for voice, too.

“One in five U.S homes is currently using a smart speaker system, and for many people, an Amazon Echo or Google Home Assistant was at the top of their holiday season wish list,” says Boulakia. “So you need to start embracing this channel, too.”

From customer journey mapping and omnichannel approaches to CX, to identifying pain points, deploying self-help portals and developing call deflection strategies or building chatbots and voicebots, Sitel Group can help your organization meet your customers’ changing demands and expectations.

Sitel Group