Competitive differentiation, improved customer retention, and continued ROI are three benefits.
Robust communication systems are essential to the success of any business, enabling them to stay in touch with customers. For continued ROI, however, communication systems must help businesses remain on the cutting edge of customer expectations in terms of their preferred ways of interacting with brands. They must evolve as new technologies emerge or as existing tools find new use cases, such as we see in the addition of digital features and applications that help grow a company’s digital presence and ability to offer more channels for customer connectivity. To facilitate these kinds of modern communications, businesses should consider utilizing APIs.
APIs, which enable communications in software, have been on the rise — influenced heavily by the introduction of disruptive new business models and evolving customer preferences that traditional technologies are not positioned to address quickly and efficiently. One common example is the API-based messaging app or phone service Uber uses to support communications between drivers and passengers.
APIs have countless use cases and are a critical tool for scalability and resilience; telecom APIs should be a go-to for businesses looking to improve customer communications. To put it simply, telecom APIs can give telephone functionality to virtually any Internet-connected device or application. Software developers can use telecom APIs to integrate calling, texting, and other telephony functions directly into applications or software services. On the back end, telecom APIs are typically supported by VoIP networks to route calls and messages from one user to another.
Outlined below are three ways companies can enhance their communications resources using telecom APIs and see return on their IT investments.
Informed Customer Support
Telecom APIs enable the creation of contextual communication experiences, which aid in the personalization of interactions, as well as the delivery of speedier and higher quality service. For example, interactions stemming from a telecom API can provide the business with a call detail record (CDR) that corresponds with the specific phone number. This record helps the organization keep track of past customer communications, so that if the customer calls or messages the company again, the customer support representative can review the history of the engagement. As a result, the representative can provide more intentional service without having to ask questions to get themselves up to speed on the customer’s needs.
Businesses can also use these records to build more intelligent reporting and inform operational decisions. For example, details such as call volume or originating location can help businesses improve decision making around staffing or resource supply to support customer service efforts. Specifically, the company can ensure the right number of people are available to answer the volume of inbound calls from a specific location. CDRs help provide accurate data on location and communication preferences. Businesses can also access CDRs without having to go to their carrier or service provider, meaning customer insight is easily accessible and they can better support customers quickly.
In-Demand Messaging Functionalities
Texting has become a front runner in modern customer communications. Customers want to interact with businesses via their mobile devices, and texting is the preferred method of communication. As a result, many businesses are embracing this communication channel due to its ability to deliver on immediacy and significant ROI on customer engagement investments.
Organizations can utilize messaging APIs to create intelligent engagement and merge SMS/MMS communication methods with their current services. For example, an optometrist office can use a messaging API to send appointment reminders via text to customers, with a link for the patient to check in to their appointment from their phone. By communicating with customers via a channel they prefer, businesses will benefit from an increase in response rates and overall customer retention. Appointment reminders also save businesses money by maximizing providers’ schedules and minimizing no-shows.
The ability to effectively scale when the market changes has become an essential component of success in today’s economy. Flexibility is now an indispensable asset, and telecom APIs can help organizations be nimble with their communication solutions when needed. Number porting APIs, for example, make it easier for companies to move phone numbers when they change providers. Or, if a specific channel is being used less frequently, the business can scale it down to match demand and dedicate resources elsewhere. Likewise, if they notice increased demand for a service, they can quickly acquire new phone numbers to meet that demand.
Businesses can utilize their telecom APIs across other campaigns that would benefit from the addition of calling or messaging functions. For example, if an ad campaign isn’t generating sufficient customer inquiries, the business can remove the phone number from the ad and repurpose it for another campaign. Telecom APIs help businesses streamline the process to adjust in the wake of unforeseen changes — a necessary ability to stay afloat in today’s market.
Maintaining connection to customers is vital to the success of any business, especially as customer preferences shift and new technologies emerge. In today’s modern landscape, businesses can take advantage of telecom APIs to make more informed decisions in relation to their customers’ changing requirements for engagement. They can also offer in-demand messaging functionalities and cost-effective scalability. As they do, business will be able to differentiate themselves from the competition and see positive impacts to their customer retention and a return on their IT investments.