How to Improve Customer Relationships with Live Chat

The insurance industry is no exception when it comes to the digital transformation that has been sweeping through business models and technology stacks over the past two decades. Evolving digital technologies have allowed companies to harness the efficiencies afforded by the cloud, improve their analytics, and other innovations designed to make operations faster and leaner.

The digital transformation of customer communications is also well underway. More and more customers expect help and support to be available to them at the point of need, on the platforms that they choose. 79% of customers prefer live chat for this reason, as chat allows them to access the immediate support they require.

For industries that have traditionally handled service by phone, implementing new communication channels can feel like an immense challenge. But getting started with live chat is a lot easier with a few tips to point you in the right direction. Here’s how you can use live chat to create unique, personalized customer experiences that can elevate your service from average to awesome.

Stand out from the crowd

Live chat systems shouldn’t make you compromise on your service standards – instead, they should provide you opportunities to improve the service you provide through clever customizations and automations. Here are some ways you can design your live chat system to deliver better customer experiences that are unique to your brand.

1. Create a branded chat button

The chat button is the gateway to your customers’ chat experience, so it pays to design it well. Your chat button can be located across your entire site or embedded into specific sections, and you can choose customized imagery and color schemes to match your brand. The button should be visible enough to be easy to spot, without being distracting.

2. Offer proactive help

Set up automatic rules to invite your customers to a conversation when they need it most. If they’re stuck on a checkout error or browsing through a feature list, initiating a conversation can help to resolve problems and remove barriers to purchase. Create customized invites that trigger depending on your customers’ page history, geography, CRM data and more.

3. Automate your chats

Getting the right queries to the right teams is automatic with live chat routing rules. Route sales inquiries to the sales department and claims to the claims team, helping you and your customers save time and effort. You can even identify ‘high-profile’ customers and route their queries to your most senior CSRs to make sure they get the service they expect. Wave goodbye to the dreaded ‘transfer tag’ and reap the benefits of easier customer engagement.

 

Features for every type of customer

No two customers are alike – and treating your customers as people, not numbers, is a sure-fire way to build closer relationships that see customers stick with you for life.

Live chat is flexible enough to handle service queries from the range of parties involved on any given purchase or claim, from the insured, their beneficiaries, service providers and more. Here are some ways that chat can be personalized to these different customer needs.

1. Adapt to context, automatically

Dynamic chat campaigns help you to implement different instances of your live chat system, with customizations that trigger for different customer types. Display different chat buttons, surveys, chat window styles and more for different customers. This allows you to develop specialized chat portals for different types of customers, providing a sophisticated and contextually-appropriate chat service.

2. Policy information on demand

No more manual searching across multiple systems – your key customer and policy data can be integrated into your team’s live chat console for instant access. This helps your team instantly get a complete picture of who your customer is and where they’re coming from, without even needing to ask.

3. Provide Intelligent Assistance options

Not all queries need humans to manage them, and customers who need simple, instant answers often get frustrated when they’re stuck in a queue. AI Chatbots can do the heavy lifting on straightforward questions and transactions, providing a friendly, conversational interface that helps customers get answers faster. When properly integrated into your account management and claims systems, your chatbot can execute more advanced tasks including claim submissions, balance inquiries, account updates, and more – all in a safe, secure, and compliant environment that protects the data and privacy of your customers and your business.

Deployment Options

Adhering to industry regulations and keeping customer data safe is paramount to maintaining trusting customer relationships. You can choose from two different deployment options with varying degrees of control.

1. Cloud-based

Cloud-based deployments are hosted and maintained by your chat vendor. Advantages of this method include simple implementations within minutes, and automatic updates to your service.

2. On-premise

When your IT team requires strict data security, on-premise deployments provide this. On-premise deployments give you autonomy over your hosting and data management, although this can result in higher implementation and maintenance costs.

Here’s a quick run-down of the two options:

Cloud-based On-premise
Hosted and maintained by the vendor Hosted and maintained on your own data servers
Data is stored on vendor servers Data is stored on your own servers
Automatic, more frequent software upgrades Less frequent, manual upgrades with scheduled maintenance
Only pay for seat licenses Pay for licenses, support, and maintenance

 

Wrap-Up

The global insurance industry has undergone turbulent times with the advent of digital and mobile communications, and many providers have been forced to adjust their business models. In insurance markets where price and product are often neck-and-neck, customer experience is fast becoming a way for insurance firms to differentiate from their competitors.

Live chat gives insurance companies the chance to improve the service that they offer by providing customer service that’s fast, convenient, and compliant. Whether you implement chat on its own or as part of an integrated, omnichannel digital customer communications strategy, it’s a flexible tool that allows you to cater to evolving customer expectations, both now and in the future.

About Jeff Epstein

Jeff is Comm100’s VP Product Marketing and Communications. He’s a B2B marketer with 20+ years’ experience creating compelling messaging and content for sales enablement and demand generation. Having held roles in sales, product marketing, business development and partner marketing with companies including IBM, General Motors, Sophos, QuickMobile, Allocadia, and Comm100, Jeff knows how to connect solutions to buyers. He holds a BA from the University of Waterloo and an MBA from Thunderbird, the American Graduate School of International Management. He speaks English and French fluently, Spanish conversationally, and is trying hard at Mandarin and Hungarian. When not at work you can find Jeff grooming his three kids for world domination, playing an active leadership role in his local community, and squeezing in quality. You can connect with Jeff here: https://www.linkedin.com/in/jeffepsteinbc/

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