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What is a contact center?



What is a contact center?

We hear that the contact center is the preferred channel communication model, but what is driving this? Before looking at that question, let’s define “contact center.” The contact center is kind of a call center on speed. Instead of communicating with customer and prospects via one channel only (voice), the contact center is equipped to communicate across a wide variety of channels. It takes the phone center communication model and layers on all of the additional varieties of voice and data communication channels that have appeared over the last two decades. Contact center channels may include
  • VoIP
  • In-app chat
  • Chat bot
  • Text
  • Email
  • Social media
  • IVR
Unlike call centers, contact centers have become a single hub for all the methods of interaction that customers choose to use.
 
So why is this necessary? The answer is new technology. Customers have many communication channels available to them, each of which is better suited to particular situations than the others. As a result, depending on their needs, they may choose a different communication channel at any one particular time. Customers expect to be able to access any and all channels now that voice is no longer the only option. Plus, these channels are often easier and less time consuming. Additionally for an organization, they also offer opportunities for quick and often proactive, outbound communication.
 
Companies are being driven to meet their customers and prospects wherever they are. Failure to not address customer communication needs violates the basic cornerstone of all good marketing: you need to meet customers where they are.

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