Transforming Regulated Communications from Print to Pixels

3 min read
Jan 10, 2022 10:01:00 PM

Digital transformation makes new Customer Communications Management (CCM) technologies essential

Digital transformation requires new technologies: enter cloud-based CCM

In the post-COVID era, we’ve all had to reimagine customer communications as digital experiences. Businesses from retail to restaurants have switched from in-person to online — and consumers now expect every industry to offer a seamless digital interaction from their desktop or phone screen.

In regulated industries, like healthcare, insurance, and financial services, this digital acceleration presents a specific set of challenges. These industries are often required to use print communications. Their documents are mired in security, privacy, and regulatory requirements.

Many ventures are using decades old CCM systems, because the process of a digital transformation seems daunting. Change is slow. But the acceleration of digital communications also presents new opportunities. It gives us new chances to improve both customer and employee experiences. It gives us room to grow.

Forward thinking ventures are ditching their legacy systems in favor of new technologies. They are finding ways to make the most of their mandated and regulated customer communications using digital channels.

Aspire Customer Communications Services published a report in 2021 entitled “Next-Gen Correspondence: Developing More Meaningful and Profitable Relationships with Customers.” This report explains how we can overhaul and upgrade our communications to use new digital channels and develop deeper and more rewarding relationships with our customers.

The shift from marketing to communicating

A survey of 300 American businesses in July 2020 determined that nearly all identified customer retention as their top priority. That was an increase of more than 20% post-COVID. At the same time, prioritizing digital communication increased 35%. Prioritizing omnichannel communications –– the ability to reach customers by multiple mediums like, email, social, and print –– rose almost 20%.

These numbers represent a post-pandemic shift from acquiring customers to keeping them, by using superior digital interactions. Consumers have moved, or are moving, online.

As a response to the pandemic most consumers chose to conduct transactions like bill payments and check deposits digitally. Over two-thirds of consumer transactional communications are exclusively digital in 2023.

In response, Businesses are reallocating marketing dollars to communications. Or, if they can, they are merging the two aspects of their business. In this era, it is critical to make every communication with our customers a good one. It is also a time to reevaluate how we communicate and the tools we use.

The new IT infrastructure

Meeting consumer expectations today requires modernizing our IT infrastructure. We have to fix the shortcomings our legacy or home-grown solutions and outdated CCM solutions.

Many existing solutions make it difficult to deliver omnichannel communications. They don’t support personalization. They make changes cumbersome and expensive. These problems make it very difficult to scale up communications when entering a new digital ecosystem.

Cloud-based solutions alleviate many of these issues. You can run them as stand-alone solutions or integrate them with working business process. They offer features that tailor software to support industry and customer-specific needs. They can be personalized at scale. They support artificial intelligence and machine learning to speed processing and boost quality. These solutions deliver output on many channels and track and store every interaction to enable better user experiences.

Maximizing the Power of Digital

Many digital communications today still look like electronic versions of print documents. Few companies are maximizing their digital potential.

Younger consumers in particular want real-time, interactive communication, according to the Aspire study. They write:

“Email is seen as a broken channel and won’t be able to fulfill this need. Emerging mediums like rich communications services (RCS), WhatsApp, and Facebook Messenger do show promise, however, their lack of tracking and document management may make them less suitable. Increasing adoption of Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning will power chatbots and other voice technology while portals may be supplemented by intelligent channels that allow customers to retrieve correspondence in easier ways.”

This 2021 study was spot on with their predictions. The tools for meaningful and interactive customer communication are now available to ventures seeking better consumer retention.

Gen Z and Millennials, the wealthy, the tech savvy, and the COVID-wary place the highest value on exceptional communications. These consumers switch providers based on their personal experience, to the benefit of companies prioritizing personalized CX.

Even in regulated industries, it's either deliver relevant, personalized, and consistent communications wherever consumers want to receive them, or lose them.

Does your organization have the tools to keep customers engaged with personalized regulated communications?