Marketers will need to adapt tactics for on-demand customer service

On-demand customer service

A new report from The Economist Intelligence Unit, Service On-demand: the Future of Customer Service.

Customer service can make or break a brand. One poor service experience can waste expensive marketing work, no matter how persuasive. Companies know this and have tried to make customer service less of a hassle by meeting customers where they are. For instance, a whopping three-quarters of leading companies surveyed  as early as 2011 used social media for customer service. Yet, personalised service and direct customer engagement can only go so far. As they require centralised control, they are hard to scale up and therefore may only be effective for a small customer base.

'Customer service that can commit to reacting to every problem within 24 hours is nearly impossible for a single company'. - Christian Viatte, CEO of Mila, a platform providing on-demand crowd customer services for telecoms

For growing companies, it’s time to re-think customer service. On-demand customer service offers a possible solution. For sharing economy companies such as Uber and AirBnB, decentralised service can increase speed and lower costs by having users provide customer service in exchange for a fee. This model scales as the company grows: the more customers you have, the more there are to help other users. All this can happen faster than traditional customer service solutions.

What this means is that on-demand customer service is poised to disrupt the market. A new report from The Economist Intelligence Unit, Service On-demand: the Future of Customer Service, sheds light on this model. It draws on a survey conducted in early 2016 of 200 senior customer service executives in the Asia-Pacific region. More than half (58%) of customer service buyers surveyed are ready for new and disruptive models. Moreover, a whopping 80% are willing to invest in an on-demand offering if it is available for their industry. Yet, only 35% of customer service providers think that an opportunity for disruption exists at all.

Get the full report on EIU Perspectives.

  The Economist Group is Knowledge partner of The Marketing Society Asia.

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