Telephone system killed by facebook?
For the past couple of years, social media platforms have been capturing the business communication at last – with individual websites, feedback offers and CRM tool uses with chat and Facebook mail. The reason: The customer wants to be catered to where he often resides – and more and more, this happens to be Facebook and Co.
Even though the new communication channels also find their way into contact centers and general customer support with increasing frequency, they are still different from captive CRM-systems. The social media platforms, wich are increasingly used for customer service, do not use telephony yet. Yet!
The contents and media types of the social networks develop rapidly. Facebook and Co. become even more present in many spheres of our lives. They do not just transmit texts and pictures, but also voice mail and eventually real-time communication via telephone and video.
Who speaks, stays.
Currently, Facebook has taken up the trend and also offers voice mail in its video chat application. This feature suprisingly does not work in cooperation with Skype – like most people have probably expected. How does it work then? Very easily: Installing the Facebook-app on the mobile phone not only makes it possible to easily follow chats , but you can also communicate with all Facebook contacts by recording and sending personal voice mails. In this process, the language is recorded by the smartphone while holding down the record button within the app. The resulting audio voice mail is subsequently displayed on the chat for all other participants to see. Through the effect of the voice, not only the mere contents of a message are conveyed, but also emphasis and emotions.
With this messenger-app, Mark Zuckerberg has created an application, which needs a closer examination in order to grasp the full range of features: In the near future, it will most likelyl be possible to make real-time phone calls just like in Canada and the USA instead of merely recording voice messages. This communication channel can be used by a huge amount of users without any costs whatsoever (except for the internet flat). This holds true for big enterprises, too, which will eventually discover the possibilities of this extravagant service channel. Companies, that already use CRM via Facebook, “just” need to expand all necessary resources for that. A tight spot for non-Facebookers? Not ultimately, for not every craftsman has to invest into a huge server to offer his services on facebook. Nevertheless, even the biggest social media opponent should not refrain from the concept of Unified Communications in the social media area, if he wants to remain competitve.
With the messenger, the so-called smart phone becomes even smarter, since the new functions are mobile now. This way, a promising opportunity for companies arises: They are able to reach their customers on the go.
But not only Facebook is actively working on new features. Also Google+ and Microsoft retort with possibilities such as video conferencing with up to ten participants or the use of Skype in combination with Lync to enable improved corporate communications.
Desktop with even MORE features
Don’t delude yourself into thinking that the mobile app has exhausted the topic, or you’ll be in for a surprise when discovering the functions of the desktop app. With one click on one of your Facebook friends, you can start the videochat function and converse with your friends directly. Up until today, this multitude of functions is still unfamiliar to many users, even though it allows for a much more intensive exchange in social networks.
Many channels, big changes.
It is advisable to choose a contact-center-solution with the option of upgrading communication channels. The simple, traditional telephone system will become less and less important with the increasing amount of new communication channels.
Detlev Artelt, CEO of the aixvox GmbH, considers a definite forecast impossible. However, he points out the clearly looming change in an interview with the SQUT: „Those, who embark on unified communications can work faster and more efficiently. People just have to stop thinking in patterns like “I have always been doing it like this” and start thinking more innovatively.“ He assumes that the growing range of communication channels will one day lead to the necessity of merging these channels in order to save time.
For interested parties: Here, you can find the interview of SQUT with Detlev Artelt (SQUT 01/13 – Killt Facebook die Telefonanlage).