INTEGRATION IS INNOVATION
We live in a multichannel, multiplatform world. Our customers purchase from us in a variety of ways: in-store, online, via phone, catalog, iTunes, iPhone apps, and via third-party platforms like Amazon’s Kindle or Nintendo’s Wii. By the same rationale, customer service needs to mirror or reflect the same spirit and diverse approach.
If this book had been written 10 or more years ago, I would be focusing on telling you to integrate your customer-service channels, specifically your call center. I’d be talking to you about interdepartmental cooperation and advising you to ensure that every call from every single customer was connected. If this book had been written five or so years ago, I’d expand this thought to include a variety of new, digital channels including, but not limited to, e-mail and web site queries.
However, this book is being written (or read) now, which is why I need to extend your scope to a third world, namely, the virtual world (but not the one you think). (See Figure 10.8
My definition of the virtual world includes the obvious virtual reality, the maligned Second Life, MMORPG experiences like World of Warcraft, and more kid-friendly environments like Club Penguin or Webkinz. But I would argue that it also includes blogs, podcasts, presence applications like Twitter, wikis, and social networks. In fact, my definition of a virtual world is any environment that utilizes avatar- and/or profile-based participation with the option or ...