How To Enhance Customer Engagement

Twilio, a leader in communications and customer engagement, showcased its latest advancements at NRF APAC 2024. Nicolas Kontopoulos, Regional CMO for Twilio APJ, highlighted the company’s evolution from an SMS-based service to a comprehensive customer engagement platform.

Twilio’s journey began with SMS and has expanded to include various communication channels like WhatsApp and email. Kontopoulos emphasized how Twilio’s acquisition of Segment has enhanced its ability to tailor customer experiences through preferred channels. “We now enable customers to create seamless omnichannel experiences,” he said. This approach addresses key challenges such as customer attraction, conversion, and retention.

Transformation Through Technology

AI: The Game Changer

Kontopoulos discussed the transformative potential of AI, particularly generative AI, in retail. Retailers are exploring how predictive and generative AI can work together to enhance customer value and streamline operations. “Generative AI opens new possibilities for businesses, driving increased value while reducing costs,” he explained.

Cross-Category Solutions

Twilio’s solutions cater to both e-commerce and traditional brick-and-mortar retailers. E-commerce vendors are enhancing retail spaces, while physical stores are improving digital experiences. Kontopoulos noted that the real challenge lies in rethinking organizational structures, which are often based on outdated models. “Operational and organizational innovation is crucial for meaningful customer interactions,” he added.

Employee Experience Matters

Twilio also focuses on improving employee experiences. Efficient access to information and smart use of technology in call centers, for instance, can significantly reduce staff churn. “Technology alone isn’t enough; it’s about reimagining processes to empower employees,” Kontopoulos stated.

Omni-Channel Integration

The future of retail, according to Kontopoulos, involves seamless integration of digital and physical channels. Consumers today expect consistent experiences across all touchpoints. Twilio’s customer engagement platform helps businesses unify these experiences, offering a comprehensive view of customer interactions. This holistic approach enables more meaningful conversations and better service.

Innovating with AI

Twilio’s AI capabilities, particularly in conversational AI, were highlighted with a demo of an AI-powered voice channel that mimics human interaction seamlessly. This technology not only enhances customer interactions but also gathers valuable insights to personalize future engagements.

Siloed Data: A Major Hurdle

A significant challenge for businesses is siloed data. Kontopoulos introduced the concept of “dark data,” which is untapped information siloed within organizations. Twilio’s solutions help unlock this data, enabling businesses to deliver personalized, channel-specific content. “Breaking down these silos is where innovation truly lies,” he emphasized.

Quick Integration for Fast Results

Twilio’s API-led approach ensures agile deployment and quick value extraction, even from existing legacy systems. “We can integrate our capabilities swiftly, helping businesses extract value without extensive delays,” Kontopoulos assured.

Physical vs. E-commerce Balance

Contrary to post-COVID predictions, physical retail has seen a resurgence. The key is the interplay between physical and digital experiences. “Connecting these experiences seamlessly is crucial,” Kontopoulos concluded.

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