The importance of providing a multichannel customer experience in marketing and service is paramount today for companies to keep and grow their customers. But in this race to have a presence on every new channel that emerges, I feel that we often ignore the basics: phone and email.Yesterday, I think I wasted the greater part of my work day chasing down this "basic" contact information for potential sources at companies and firms that I want to reach out to request their participation in upcoming articles. With as many channels as there are today, why is it still so difficult to get in touch with people and companies?
While many of the sources that I came across provided me with the options of connecting with them via Facebook or Twitter, my queries need more space than 140 characters and if the potential source isn't following me back on Twitter, then the service doesn't permit sending private messages. With Facebook, I don't want to broadcast my message on someone's wall.
I spoke to Matthew Bellows, CEO and founder of Yesware, yesterday, and he called email "the original social network," adding that despite cries that email is dying, it still serves as the main source of communication that most people use and that Twitter and Facebook also rely on to send alerts. Then why are we ignoring this valuable channel?
Today's consumers are pressed for time and cannot spend more than even a couple of minutes searching for contact information if they have a question or concern. To be truly multichannel, companies must provide a number of contact options, not just the cool channels like social and mobile apps, but the basic ones that are engrained in how many of us prefer to communicate. And they need to make all these options clearly visible on their websites.
If you disagree, please feel free to contact me at:
Wasn't that easy?