Brands are realizing the crucial role that customer experience (CX) plays in brand loyalty, customer retention, referrals, reputation—and the importance of phone conversations to build relationships with consumers—and new insights from real-time emotional intelligence solutions firm Cogito’s industry-first survey enable enterprises to better meet the demands of the modern day consumer. The firm recently released its first Emotional Experience Index, highlighting emerging trends shaping the CX landscape.
The Index is based on feedback gathered from call center agents across the United States evaluating primary pain-points and, specifically, the role emotional intelligence and empathy play in agents’ ability to deliver positive experiences. The results overwhelmingly found (89%) that establishing a more personalized rapport, and better awareness of the customers’ perception within a call are critical to delivering positive outcomes.
“Phone professionals are at the heart of the customer relationship,” said Josh Feast, CEO and co-founder of Cogito, in a news release. “Despite the rise of self-service channels, more than three quarters of consumers prefer to speak with a live individual—and that percentage is even higher when it relates to sophisticated inquiries. Now more than ever, consumers not only expect a certain level of service but are fast to switch providers and share their opinions when expectations are not met. Our survey results combined with our work with leading consumer-focused enterprises leads to the clear conclusion that emotional intelligence is a critical skill and tools that can enhance it will drive more engaged employees and customers.”
According to the survey findings, better rapport with customers will improve agent job satisfaction and enhance the customer’s perception of their company. Among the key findings, agents reported the following:
- 76% take 30 calls or more per day.
- 81% believe the most frustrating part of their job is being treated disrespectfully by customers.
- 73% believe it would be helpful to be attuned to the customer’s perception of their communication style during the call.
- 93% believe their communication style impacts the customers’ perception of the brand.
In a complementary study recently reported by Accenture, 73% of consumers choose a human over a digital capability when seeking advice or looking to resolve a service issue or complaint. Following a bad experience with a company, Accenture reported that 77% percent of customers will tell others, underscoring the relationship between positive customer experiences and the effect on brand equity. To this point, a Temkin Group study of 10,000 U.S. consumers reported that those consumers that have a good emotional experience with a brand are 12 times more likely to recommend that company.
“Cogito’s findings are in line with our research and client experience,” said Bruce Temkin, customer experience transformist and managing partner at Temkin Group, in the release. “Emotion, how an interaction makes a customer feel, is the most loyalty-building component of the experience. One of the key ways to improve emotion is to build organizational empathy, making everyone from the CEO to a call center rep keenly aware of how they are making customers feel.”
The Cogito Emotional Experience Index gathers and tracks survey data from call centers professionals and consumers around the country to provide insight into CX best practices and industry trends. Cogito plans to release additional findings later this year including results from its survey focused on the consumer’s perception of their service experience.
Source: Business Wire; edited by Richard Carufel