Demand for Digital Interactions High in Asia Pacific, But CX Lagging Behind

CINNOX (CX for customer experience, INNO for innovation), an all-in-one customer and employee experience SaaS platform, recently announced the findings of a study it commissioned for research and advisory company Forrester.

The study, titled “Infuse Digital Experiences with the Right Dose of Human Touch,” and available for download here, found out that demand for customer experience (CX) in the Asia Pacific region is extremely high, so much that it is now a key competitive differentiator in the world of business. Despite this high demand, however, organisations in the region are often failing in terms of exceeding customer expectations. In fact, only 1 in 5 organisations in the region are exceeding customer expectations when it comes to CX.

Among the other key findings of the study, which surveyed 1,200 customers from Malaysia, Australia, Hong Kong, Indonesia, the Philippines and Singapore, are the following:

  • Just 16% of the respondents experienced CX interactions exceeding their expectations. Perhaps surprisingly, that number is lower in more developed markets, such as Hong Kong and Singapore, where CX sentiments were lowest at a paltry 7% and 9%, respectively. Malaysia, one of the region’s emerging economies, fared slightly higher at 12%. 

  • Digital interactions are at an all-time high in the region, driven primarily by the COVID-19 pandemic. Despite the shift to digital, customers still have a high emotional value to the human touch in CX.

  • Five unique customer personas have emerged post-pandemic, and each requires a specific, tailored approach for better CX.

“Customer experience is the battleground that organisations compete on. The study shows organisations lack the methodologies and insights to truly curate delightful customer experiences for different newly emergent personas, based on their preferences and intents,” said Patsy Wong, Chief Strategy Officer at CINNOX. “At CINNOX, we’re able to solve this and improve both customer and employee experiences alike with one customer engagement and analytics platform.”

The five post-pandemic customer personas Forrester and CINNOX identified in the study are as follows:

  • Omni-Shoppers - About 44% of the respondents aged 20–49 consider both human and digital touchpoints vital. They feel safe with digital interactions and demand omnichannel experiences that seamlessly transition between touchpoints. These respondents have previous experiences engaging in online activities pre-pandemic but are now doing more of it during the pandemic. 

  • Multichannel Enthusiasts - Around 15% of the respondents aged 20–49 utilise different channels for customer service and support. That said, they prefer their issues to be resolved end-to-end within a single touchpoint only, meaning, without having to switch channels. Like the Omni-shoppers, multichannel enthusiasts have been engaging in online activities pre-pandemic and have only ramped up engagement online during the health crisis.

  • Reserved Digital Immigrants - Some 15% of the respondents aged 50 and above prefer offline touchpoints first, followed by online touchpoints but with live human support. They also prefer not to switch communication across touchpoints and feel less safe with digital interactions. Unsurprisingly, they have not engaged that much in online activities since the pandemic started.

  • Affluent High-Touch Seekers - About 15% of respondents aged 50 and above and with high income prefer offline touchpoints but have a comfort level with digital ones as well. Either way, they desire high personal touch in order to establish greater trust and rapport. Unlike reserved digital immigrants, affluent high-touch seekers have been engaging in some online activities pre-pandemic, and have only increased engagement during the pandemic.

  • Low-Touch Digital Natives - Around 12% of respondents aged 30 and below are happy with self-service digital touchpoints throughout the customer journey even if there is little to no human intervention. Pre-pandemic, low-touch digital natives have been heavily engaged in online activities, and have increased engagements during the health crisis.

Incidentally, live human support in customer experience is still highly sought after even with the pandemic accelerating the shift towards digital interactions. Given this finding, Forrester and CINNOX are recommending that organisations redefine their approach to CX and tailor it to each specific persona. Organisations, in addition, must look to augment their offline and online touchpoints with live human support.

Organisations looking to improve their CX can, thus, get in touch with CINNOX and leverage its total experience SaaS platform. Among other things, CINNOX can help organisations reduce waiting times and resolve inquiries right away through its commitment to the three key pillars of customer service: connect, orchestrate and evaluate.

  • Connect. CINNOX adapts responses by unifying all telephony and digital channels, thereby ensuring full customer context and seamless transition between touchpoints.

  • Orchestrate. CINNOX automates not only workflows but also intelligent routing, thus, ensuring that customers are matched with the expertise they need for their concerns.

  • Evaluate. CINNOX offers an extensive and encompassing Customer 360, interaction analysis and sentiment data that together improve CX, track improvements and monitor staff performance.

Consumer behaviour and demands will forever be changing but one thing that is likely to be a constant is the desire for excellent CX that exceeds expectations. This is a reality that all organisations will have to embrace now and moving forward, so they can continue enhancing their CX strategies and even invest in CX-centric platforms, like CINNOX.

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