Friday, March 11, 2011

Start-Up Watch COD: eXaudios let’s you “see” how customers are feeling, over the phone

Thanks to the ad:tech blog for publishing this first.

Few would dispute that an in-person meeting is a better way to gauge the interest and emotions of a prospect or customer than a phone call. But we can’t be everywhere. Hence the rise of call centers – whether in the US or in any of dozens of outsource countries around the globe.

Certainly, innovations like the "call me back button" on Amazon and other sites serve to reduce the frustration of consumers that are calling to buy or complain.

But when the call does connect, I would imagine it’s rather difficult to know what you’ve got on the other end. Is the prospect phone genuinely interested, or just fishing for info? Is the consumer so angry that you need to do something extra to assuage them, or are they simply looking for some sort of simple resolution? These are just two of the ways that eXaudio’s MagInfy product offering can help boost customer satisfaction and close rates.

What this fascinating offering does, is “read” the emotional state of the caller based upon the sound of their voice. The company says that the technology can detect genuine interest and emotional state, thereby helping improve speed to sale, lead triage, and gauge service levels necessary to provide satisfaction and reduce churn. They can also – in just 20 or so seconds, determine whether a caller is an early adopter or a laggard, which could have enormous implications on both the style of sell and whether the rep should spend much time speaking with them.

Naturally, if you’ve been selling for a couple decades, a lot of this is something your ears have been trained to do. It's part of your "instinct." But how much more effective would you have been – and how much richer might you be, if you had had such an emotional reading tool at the onset of your sales or service career? And how much better do you think someone who's never done customer service before -- or who has spent their entire life in another culture -- might perform?

The MagInfy offering also helps gauge the effectiveness and emotional state of representatives, helping to proactively drive management actions to improve their performance. The platform also provides feedback on the manner in which the rep handles caller issues, helping them do their job better.

The caller need not be speaking to a live rep; rather, their emotional state can be captured in the IVR conversations that are occurring before the live rep is connected. Here’s a video that COMES FROM THE Demo show, with an actual demo that is really earth shattering. It’s a little long but hang in there for the demo. Beyond cool.

The company is also planning to use the technology in the security and HR arenas.
eXaudios is based in Israel – another example of how that tiny country is playing such a disproportionately large role in the transformation of communications and society through digital and other forms of technology. There services are available in the US.

Customer service has always been important -- now it has become absolutely crucial. Ask Sprint. Making a call center more effective is more than good business sense. If this platform does all it says it can...

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