Articles for Ian Jacobs
Will Uberization Ruin Contact Centers?
A community-based gig economy model is giving way to a more utilitarian model.
Digital Humans Are Here to Serve You
Animated avatars for customer service are becoming too good to dismiss.
Wake Me Up When the Chatbots Write Their Own Scripts
They're a long way from that now, but AI points toward that future
What Do Customers Really Want From Chatbots?
And do they themselves really know?
2021: The Year Customer Service Embraces Empathy
Customer service has always had something of an identity crisis. But that could be about to change.
We Don’t All Want to Work From Home
Efficiency goes up, but does employee happiness?
Stop Trying to Make Us All Productive
Instead of hyper-focusing on productivity, companies must also consider their workers' well-being
As Agents Already Know, Emotional Work Is Real Work
Compassion fatigue can be a big issue in contact centers
What Post-Pandemic Contact Centers Will Look Like
Will agents return to the office or remain remote? The answer is, likely, yes to both
Empathy Has Its Limits, and It’s Also More Critical Than Ever
Accept that we're all human and let that be your guide, in personal and business contexts
To Succeed in Customer Service, Forget the Rule Your Parents Taught You
Why is my preference assumed to be your preference?
Here’s One of the Best Ways to Make Your Customers Happy
Make your agents happy first—and outsourcers demonstrate innovative ways to do that
Being Insensitive to Customers Is an Odd Business Plan
Some of the travel industry's offers seem suspiciously like extortion
Analyzing CX Means Looking at the High Points, Wherever They Are
How customers feel at the end of interactions is only part of the story, not the climax
The ‘Cost Center’ Notion Must Go (Finally)
Companies claim to be customer-obsessed, but customers themselves feel otherwise. What's not adding up?
To Truly Work, AI Needs to Get Really Personal
Artificial intelligence must do more than reflect back what it thinks it knows about us
Speech Recognition Is Not Speech Understanding
Companies and contact centers strive to communicate with customers across countries and languages, but are their efforts getting lost in [machine] translation?
Yes, Companies Can Influence Customer Emotion
How experiences make customers feel is crucial. Ignore that at your own peril.
Conversational AI Should Speak Plainly and Carry a Big Meaning
Highly technical or lawyerly utterances should be eschewed—in other words, lose the jargon
How Chatbots Can Create a New Kind of Agent
Conversational AI will change customer service, and humans will still matter
AI Isn’t Inevitable—It’s a Choice
Companies should approach automation with judgment and analysis, not resignation
Is Customer Service Ready for the Nonstop Chatter of Messaging Apps?
When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro
Where Is Amazon Go-ing With This?
The staffless Amazon Go stores seem like a convenience revolution—though for now, the experience might be beside the point
With Customer Experience, ‘Good’ and ‘Consistent’ Aren’t Always the Same Thing
Experiences that lead to happy customer outcomes can yield less-than-ideal business outcomes
Virtual Agents Hear What You Say. Do They Know What You Mean?
Deciphering intent is best left to humans, who have a hard enough time with it
Customer Service Needs to Tackle Customer Emotion
How a customer feels about an interaction is the biggest contributor to good CX
Real-Time Analytics Provides ‘Quality Assurance’—and Privacy Concerns
Those QA recordings can also be recording your emotional state. Should they be opt-in?
I Give and I Give, but You Take and You Take
Companies should try providing a little value before begging for more of our personal information
The Dawning of a New Era in CRM (Magazine)
‘Willkommen, bienvenue, welcome…fremde, etranger, stranger!'
‘Chatbot Hell’ Can’t Become a Thing
Let's not re-create the bad customer experience known as ‘IVR hell' with chatbots. Please.
Personalized Customer Service Means Recognizing Low-Key and Diva Moments
Journey maps can help companies understand—and adapt to—context.
3 Ways Mobile Messaging Boosts Customer Service
Messaging tools are wildly popular, but that's not the only reason to make them a service option
Why Increased Self-Service Can Be Good for Agents
Customers do everything they can to avoid talking to them—except when it really matters
Social Customer Service: The Hype Gives Way to Practice
But the model you choose will depend on who's using it, and how
Future Shock? Or Not?
Is frustrating customer service inevitable?
In Vino Veritas
Drinking in customer experience.
All I Know Is That I Don’t Know Nothing
Blending knowledge management with customer service is critical
Fundamentals Trump Everything
Providing an extraordinary experience should never compromise the basics
Hosted Contact Centers Poised for Growth
Purse strings loosen on capital spending, which may bring rapid deployments
New Tools and Old Mistakes
Contact centers risk wasting powerful technology on the automation of imperfect processes
Location’s Not Really Where It’s At
The danger of uniting location-driven applications and customer interactions
Postcards from the Edge
Just because you can engage with a community doesn't mean you have to.
Combine and Conquer
Consolidation can benefit customers and companies alike.
A Salesforce.com by Any Other Name
What do you do when your brand no longer reflects your offerings?
The Lessons of the Magic Curry Kart
Your local street-food vendor can teach your company a thing or two.
The New Interaction of Social Media
Beyond marketing, the popular tools and techniques can also serve as a channel for support.
An Opportunity in Chaos
Customer retention is the best use of a bad situation.
Bad Economy = Bad CRM?
Before the markets hit the skids, companies had just begun to target customer experience.
CRM has never prioritized the individual salesperson—but social networking changes all that.
We Are What We Expect
Shifts in customer satisfaction need to take into account shifts in customer expectations.
Your Customers Are Everywhere
Beyond the comfy confines of your corporate Web site, people are talking -- and complaining.
Playing at the Speed of the New
When online businesses put customer feedback to use quickly, customers begin to expect it from all companies.
Across the Universe
Not all agents are created equal.
We Can't Rewind, We've Gone Too Far
Stop regarding video as another technological nuisance--video will achieve the CRM trifecta of lower costs, better service, and happier customers.
Gethuman? Get Real.
The new project's standard could work to deepen, not reduce, consumer dissatisfaction.
Culture and Skills: The Right Route
Sending customer service queries to employees who are not trained in customer care is the wrong way to go.
The problem with automated phone systems is, companies neglect the various environments of a typical user experience.