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THE CPAAS REVOLUTION Rohit Tripathi, senior vice president, head of products and go-to-market, and Markku Helin, head of product management, SAP Contact Center 365, at SAP Digital Interconnect, explain how to use CPaaS to improve engagements and service in the experience economy dictating which channels users can or can’t use to contact them – you now have to interact with individuals on their preferred channel and on their terms.

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oday, we all expect a smooth experience in every aspect of our digital lives, whether that’s talking to friends or making a purchase, planning a trip or contacting a brand for customer support. All businesses and app developers today are participating in the experience economy, where the experience they provide to customers can have just as much weight as their product, service or app itself. When we’re thinking about businesses communicating with consumers, the experience economy means choosing the right channel at the right time and in the right context. It’s no longer a case of the business

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In its recent Ovum paper, ‘Understanding the Complexity of Messaging Channels and Digital Engagement,’ SAP Digital Interconnect has found that email is the preferred messaging channel by which consumers interact with their service providers for a number of use cases, followed by SMS, and then voice. This doesn’t mean that one channel is necessarily superior to the other, it’s just a matter of personal preference and context. Each channel has its own benefits and drawbacks, depending on factors such as the customer, use case, urgency and data connectivity limitations. There are simple interactions where SMS, WhatsApp or Facebook Messenger are the perfect means of communication between brand and customer, but for more complex cases, a voice call, email or live chat might be necessary.

Right now, however, this isn’t how most businesses are approaching the customer experience. We all know that it costs exponentially more to acquire a new customer than to retain an existing one but, as most companies have undergone digital transformations, many haven’t included customer service as part of that process. This is a huge opportunity. An SAP study showed that 92 per cent of leading companies have a mature digital transformation strategy in place to improve the customer experience, compared to 22 per cent for non-leaders. Achieving this kind of transformation requires an omnichannel approach – and this is where CPaaS comes in.

WHAT IS CPAAS? CPaaS, or communications-platformas-a-service, refers to a cloud-based platform which simplifies the integration of communications services – meaning SMS, email, voice, push, social, RCS, chatbots, any channel or microservice such as authentication you care to name – into existing backend systems and apps.

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