The value of retaining customers cannot be overstated, and reducing customer churn is an area where analytics shines. Indeed, if necessity is the mother of invention, then analytics is the mother of retention.
Dave Patchen, my partner at MainTrax, has worked with dozens of clients on closing sales, capitalizing on up-selling opportunities, and analyzing marketing effectiveness, but he says that for many organizations, retention is the holy grail of speech analytics. “It’s rather tedious to reverse-engineer calls to discover predictable indicators of customer frustration and language patterns that identify silent switchers,” he says. “But if you devote the time to review calls that took place upstream, you’ll find that the customer provided clear churn signals early on.”
Patchen’s advice for anyone who wants to reduce churn? Take the time to connect the dots, then reach out immediately to callers whom your speech tool identifies as customers at risk before they call you again to say they have already committed themselves to another provider. Every customer you retain may be worth thousands of dollars in future revenue and replacement cost savings.
Despite clear evidence that speech analytics can deliver enormous value to marketing, I continue to be surprised at how few contact centers pay attention to “the people across the hall.” Part of the problem lies with speech analytics vendors who focus their demos primarily on improving customer experience and agent performance. I understand as churn applications can be complex and time consuming. Another factor is simply human nature; operations people tend to be laser-focused on operations and only operations.
Foresight, big-picture thinking, and consensus building is required to peel back the layers of potential churn applications to ensure that retention departments—and consequently the entire organization—can benefit from the actionable business intelligence produced by speech analytics.
MainTrax is a leading provider of speech analytics professional services and managed services to end users and industry partners. Free of allegiance to any one solution or supplier, MainTrax has earned a reputation as an independent, unbiased resource for consulting expertise across a variety of products and providers.
About Scott Bakken
Founder and President of MainTrax, is an independent voice of the speech analytics industry.