Joe Gagnon, CEO
Digital messaging and a messaging-first strategy have evolved as proven and effective channels for businesses to communicate with their customers. This growth can be attributed to the compelling reasons to opt to message as a delivery mechanism—both for profitability and scalability. “Voice platforms, emails, and live chats are unreliable, less interesting, expensive, and ineffective ways of rapidly dealing with the customer to understand where they live and how they operate their phones,” says Joe Gagnon, CEO of Sparkcentral. He continues, “In the next two to five years, messaging has the potential to become the preferred method for interaction and engagement between customers and companies to provide products and services in a platform they are more comfortable with.” Recognizing messaging as the preferred platform not just in social but also in customer service settings, Sparkcentral has created a digital messaging platform that offers enhanced opportunities for customer engagement by providing its agents with a blend of conversation history, customer, and product data.
The solution provides consumers with access to different channels and allows them to pick the method most favorable to them. The platform also facilitates information on customer operations and helps customer service representatives in managing the labor force across each channel holistically. The platform identifies areas needing improvement due to customer dissatisfaction. Built as a SaaS platform from the ground up, customer service organizations can be up and running with the platform in as little a week and do not require in-depth technical and operational skills for managing the system. The availability of the platform on the cloud also makes it easier to carry out pilot implementations, receive feedback, and modify the offering suitably prior to full-scale deployment.
We believe that messaging is the primary platform for customer service and engagement on board
“The ability to integrate in real-time and provide customer data to customer service representatives while they are interacting with the customer, is highly essential to good customer service,” says Gagnon. Over the past ten years, Sparkcentral has worked on knowing its customers using CRM systems, which it looks upon as a valuable and powerful tool that is still underutilized in interacting with customers. Sparkcentral’s ability to integrate with other enterprise solutions, including CRM, workforce management, and contact centers, makes it easy to implement and use.
A critical element of the Sparkcentral platform is its focus on reporting. Gagnon explains, “We go beyond mere transactional data reporting to create a Tableau custom capability that builds and uses new templates defined by Sparkcentral to look for patterns and trends in the data and draw out essential insights. By acting on these reports, Sparkcentral operates better. The company is also highly conscious of customer privacy and uses a GDPR-like methodology for its customers across the U.S. and Africa as well as Europe for the effective management of customer data across companies. As an emerging, next-gen internet companies build large messaging centers instead of large contact centers, the Sparkcentral platform aids them in providing a smoother customer experience.”
Even outside of traditional customer care, Sparkcentral can add value when it comes to finding efficient means of communication. As an example, an airline faced a dilemma when it sought to provide flight attendants with the means to communicate with flight operations, whether they were airborne or on the ground. As voice calls were out of the question, they looked to the Sparkcentral messaging platform to provide a solution. Sparkcentral’s powerful application helped the airlines in unifying thousands of people traveling on-air to ground staff, and ensured that any problem that arose mid-flight could be efficiently solved in real-time.
“We believe that messaging really is becoming the primary platform for customer and employee engagement alike,” says Gagnon. Sparkcentral plans to expand to Asia-Pacific while continuing its system of engaging with complementary partners to improve relations between the company and its consumers.