SAN FRANCISCO, July 20, 2018 /PRNewswire/ -- Lithium Technologies, the leading platform for enabling brands to support, serve and engage customers, today announced its support for Apple Business Chat, allowing Lithium customers to meet hundreds of millions of iOS customers where they are — on one of the most the exciting new channels in the rapidly expanding messaging market.
Apple Business Chat is a new way for users to communicate directly with businesses using the Messages app on iPhone and iPad. And, the combination of Lithium and Apple Business Chat offers an easy, 1:1 asynchronous way to message brands directly and connect with and deliver personalized experiences to customers at the right time with minimal effort.
Direct messaging is increasingly becoming a preferred support channel for consumers and brands alike, with 63 percent of consumers citing satisfaction when reaching out to brands via messaging to resolve their issues1. Looking at the highly coveted millennial demographic, Sapio found that these digital natives turn to direct messaging first to connect with brands 40 percent of the time, and these consumers expect brands to be available on the channels of their choice.
"Great customer service today is really about creating great customer engagement," said Lithium CEO Pete Hess. "Today's consumers expect a convenient way to interact with brands without waiting on hold or expiring chat sessions. The ease of messaging a brand directly and personally, through Apple Business Chat, is a crucial way brands build loyalty and trust. Being there for customers whenever and wherever they want to connect with you is an absolute necessity for businesses who wish to survive."
Apple Business Chat will allow users to ask a question about a product or service directly to a business using the Messages app. When searching for a business on iPhone and iPad in Maps or Safari, with Search or Siri, or through the businesses' website or app, users will see the option to contact the business using Messages, and they can continue conversations with an Apple Watch or Mac. The service makes it easy to reach a live person and users are always in control of whether they share any contact information with a business.
Lithium's engagement platform monitors a brand's digital conversations and organizes them for the right person to respond quickly and accurately. Lithium unifies and processes digital interactions with intelligent workflows and secure account authentication for fast resolution, ultimately offering the brand holistic analytics to track success.
Complementing Apple Business Chat's built-in security, Lithium's Secure Verification capability allows brands to authenticate customers before requesting any private information to ensure that interaction stays secure — often a requirement in many heavily regulated industries that need heightened data protections, such as banking or travel.
"Given shifting consumer expectations, the importance of authenticating and responding in a secure and personalized manner in the channel of a customer's choice, such as through Apple Business Chat, is essential in today's competitive marketplace," added Hess.
A key benefit of the Lithium platform is the ability to handle all of these diverse avenues of engagement without the inconvenience of diverting to a different channel. The seemingly unnecessary shuffling from one channel to the next for problem resolution — especially when it involves personal data or expertise from another team — is a frustrating experience that can directly impact consumer perception. Sapio found that almost 50 percent of consumers felt less positive about a company after having to switch channels than they did prior to the interaction.
Apple Business Chat is available in beta in the U.S. and is built into iOS 11.3 and higher.
The Lithium engagement platform comprises Online Community, Social Media Management and Messaging products for social customer service, social support and social media marketing teams to listen, respond and act on customer conversations – creating deep relationships and fostering brand loyalty and advocacy.
With over 15 years of expertise, Lithium has a massive digital footprint with approximately 480 million new digital interactions analyzed daily and 100 million monthly visitors across its Online Communities.
The best Fortune 1000 companies in the world trust Lithium to help them build closer, more personalized and trusted relationships with their customers.