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New Research from LivePerson,, Simplr, Smart Communications, and Sailthru

Reports Tackle Call vs. Message Options, AI Use in Marketing, Chatbots, and More

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This roundup features newly released reports on a range of issues: whether consumers today prefer calling or messaging customer service; the use of artificial intelligence (AI) in marketing; how consumers feel about chatbot help vs. service from a live human; the importance of the insurance claims experience; and why consumers are willing to share their personal data. Details follow.

LivePerson: Consumers Want Option to Both Call and Message Customer Service

Consumers worldwide want brands to not only provide options for customers to call and message, but also to connect the history of their interactions across both voice and messaging channels, states a new report from LivePerson, the New York City-based provider of a conversational commerce software platform for consumers to message brands.

Findings from the report, based on a survey of more than 2,500 participants worldwide, show that consumer preferences on calling or messaging customer service also shift, depending on their situation and the time of day. For instance, when commuting on public transportation, 80% prefer to message. However, when commuting in a car, 69% prefer to call. During work hours, 75% prefer to message, but when at home, 53% prefer to call.

Brands using history, context, and emotion to provide connected CX will gain an edge over competitors. Among consumers, 87% say they are more likely to do business with a company that connects their interactions across voice and messaging, while 82% will do the same with a company whose bots can take what the company already knows about them from previous interactions and can apply that information to their current situation.

Even so, many brands have yet to meet consumer expectations. What would make for better experiences, consumers say, is to not have them repeatedly explain their situation to multiple agents (65%), and for customer service to help them spend less time on calls (56%). US Consumers Do Not Mind the Use of AI in Marketing

A new research study from, an online resource for the customer data platform (CDP) sector, shows that most US consumers are open to the idea of AI playing a role in providing personalized communications, but more than half say access to a live person—and not automated chatbots —is what will significantly improve their CX.

Overall, people are in favor of companies using AI in marketing despite CX and privacy concerns, and those who work with AI on a regular basis are nearly twice as likely to find AI’s role in personalization helpful. Respondents had the most positive feelings about AI when the technology is used in entertainment (54%), followed by shopping (51%), healthcare (48%), and advertising (44%).

But despite their growing popularity, AI and AI chatbots are perceived to be helpful by only a third of consumers, with more than 20% finding the technology to be irritating or time-consuming. Meanwhile, 64% say access to live people would significantly improve their CX, indicating that customer service still requires a human touch.

The research also found data privacy to be of major importance to consumers, with 81% saying they are “somewhat” or “very concerned” about how consumer online privacy could potentially be compromised by the use of AI for marketing, customer service, and technical support.

Simplr: Consumers Will Use Chatbots If They Can Transfer to Human Agents

While Boomers, Gen X, Millennials, and Gen Z have different impressions of customer service chatbots, all agree on the fundamental necessity of easy transfers to a live human, according to the results of a new 1,000-person study from Simplr, the provider of a human-first, machine-enabled CX solution based in Nashville, Tennessee. Moreover, 80% become much more willing to use a chatbot if they know that they can easily transfer to a live customer service agent.

To be sure, stark generational differences exist on the question of desirable customer service interactions. Among Gen Z consumers, 20% prefer to start with a chatbot, compared to only 4% of Boomers.

The study also found that in a seamless transfer from bot to human, 60% of consumers become more likely to continue to do business with a brand in the future. Yet when a chatbot fails and no option is available to transfer to a live agent, the impact for the business is disastrous, with 60% of consumers less likely to remain a customer.

Overall, consumers continue to feel ambivalent about chatbots. Even though chatbot usage has doubled since 2020 and chatbots have increased in number, customers are not showing any strong willingness to use them. Such a disconnect points to a major missed opportunity for chatbot vendors in that they prioritized quantity of interactions over quality of experiences for their chatbots, failing to win over consumers as a result, the study notes.

Smart Communications: Insurance Claims Experience is Key to Winning Customers

A new study from Smart Communications, the UK-based provider of a CX platform for delivering  personalized, omnichannel conversations, says that 95% of insurance executives believe that the insurance claims experience provides the best opportunity to win customer loyalty and trust, but also carries the greatest risk of losing them altogether. Moreover, 96% believe hyper-personalized communication to be the key to offering better claims efficiency and quality of claimant experience.

The study also shows that while 92% of insurers believe greater transparency around the claims process would help to build customer trust, 95% felt that their organizations were not using the data they already had as well as they could to personalize the claims experience. Among respondents, only 20% use AI at present to tackle claims personalization tasks, such as updating customers on policy information and channel orchestration.

The biggest priorities for insurers this year in the area of claims experience include three goals:  increasing efficiency (89%), reducing settlement times (74%), and reducing customer effort (74%).

James Brown, CEO at Smart Communications, says the time has come for the insurance industry to evolve from digital-centric experiences to ones that are customer-centric. The result, Brown adds, will be improved customer satisfaction and increased trust, which will have long-term effects on claims experience and business operations.

Sailthru: Consumers are Willing to Share Data for More Value

Most consumers will share their personal data in exchange for more value and better experiences, reveals a new report from Sailthru, the New York City-based provider of personalized marketing automation technology  for retail and media brands. The report, conducted by Coresight Research among more than 5,000 US and UK consumers, shows 80% of the respondents are willing to share personal data to earn loyalty program benefits; 70% are willing to share their data to receive special discounts and offers; and 71% will shop more often with brands or retailers that personalize their communications.

The report says marketers must also continue to elevate their personalization strategies to win over consumers, especially because of disparities between retail and consumers on what each side believes to be true. For instance, while the retailers surveyed cite email as the fourth most important channel for personalization, consumers place email in second place. And even though 23% of the retailers and brands surveyed view social media as a top channel for personalization, only 11% of consumers share that assessment.

There is also value that can be harnessed from underutilized touchpoints, the report notes. Providing personalization in areas that are rated poorly for CX, such as shipping and fulfillment, could provide measurable improvement for retailers.

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