What do your customers want most from your business? It’s such a simple question, but the answer can be wildly complicated.

Take PwC’s Future of Customer Experience (CX) report, for example. People say efficiency is the most important factor in customer service, as well as the part of the experience they’ll most readily pay extra for. Convenience comes second.

It’s this kind of feedback that has (quite rightly) led businesses down the route of automation – chatbots, website forms, email nurture campaigns and self-service. 

But that’s when things get complicated. The next most important CX initiatives (according to customers themselves) are investments in friendly and knowledgeable service and human interaction. In fact, 82% of US consumers say they want more human interaction the more technology improves.

As purveyors of automated digital human technology, we’re VERY interested in this topic. So we gathered the experts in marketing, strategy and innovation to discuss how the leading brands are balancing automation with the human touch

You can watch the full webinar on demand below. And if you want a glimpse of what topics are in store, we’ve compiled a list of our favorite quotes from our guests below. 

UneeQ human touch customer journey webinar video thumbnail | UneeQ Blog

1. Brand voice delivers value throughout the marketing funnel

“We spend so much time and so much effort and so much thought getting someone to that top part of the funnel. Getting them to the top of the funnel is half the battle. Getting them through the funnel is even harder. Anything you can do to keep a similar [brand] identity all the way through, we see that the conversion factor grows significantly each step of the way.”

Sean King, Executive Vice President, Veritone.

2. Connect your customers with your customers

“We all thought the pandemic would be a moment, but it’s really proving to be this kind of extended period of evolving and changing customer expectations. We’re having to get more personalized, a lot more topical, offering forums for smaller discussions. We’ve had real success in doing things like our CIO exchange, where we pull together people [with matching roles] where they can talk to each other and offer insights and perspectives.”

Shawnita Sterett, Sr Demand Generation Director, Autodesk.

3. It’s not just the big companies excelling at human-centric CX

“Last night I called my local cafe where I liked to order takeout. I call, and my cafe – a small, small restaurant – says, ‘oh, this is Miriam, would you like this in your order?’ which is my typical order. Which is pretty impressive because I had just been on a call to my healthcare provider… and was left on hold for 30 minutes. Those, for me, were good and bad versions of customer experience. And it’s interesting that the large corporation was bad.

Miriam McLemore, Enterprise Strategy Director, AWS.

4. The importance of boundaries

“We’re constantly working to optimize and retain engagement in specific audiences. And in any case, we’re developing our own rules to respect customer boundaries. So, for example, we have our own rules about opt-out policies. If you have opted in to all of our emails but we don’t see you engaging in something in particular, then we have rules around our responsibility to turn down that volume so we don’t lose you as an engager. We’ll be more selective. If we see you reconnecting, then we’ll pull you back in and we feel OK about that.”

Shawnita Sterett, Sr Demand Generation Director, Autodesk.

5. Choosing between interactions and transactions

“Personality-centric brand strategies are kind of what we’re talking about every day. We’re seeing more and more customers utilize these through the customer lifecycle. At what stage does it make sense to have an interaction versus just a transaction? We assume people want to go really fast when we think about automation and we think about digital. But there’s actually really high-value touchpoints when it makes a lot of sense to introduce personality and an interaction, so customers have an opportunity to get engagement and to build a relationship.”

Simon Grieve, VP Strategic Partnerships, UneeQ.