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Customer Experience and Design

#DF15: How 3 Leading Brands Deliver Personalized Customer Service


How do B2C companies like FedEx, Walgreens and Yahoo deliver personalized customer service in a connected and high volume world? Brian Calderwood (Walgreens), Celeste Davis (FedEx TechConnect), and Anar Shah (Yahoo) told us how:

FedEx TechConnect

Quote – “I will make every FedEx experience outstanding.

FedEx deployed Service Cloud roughly 9 months ago as part of an overarching digital connection strategy. Prior to Service Cloud they had a number of disconnected systems, and no streamlined support tool. Service Cloud has connected their support organization and opened up multiple support channels, including a live chat experience deployed on hundreds of websites in 35 countries and 18 languages.

Challenges Prior to Service Cloud:

  • Building customer connections globally
  • Behind the curve. Desired to be more predictive around customer needs

Solution Highlights:

  • Email-To-Case with complex customized routing that gets cases to the correct agent based on the issue and customers native language
  • Live Chat displayed on hundreds of websites in 18 languages also with complex routing to ensure the customer gets the right agent the first time
  • Social Customer Service Channel

Lessons Learned:

  • Companies need to have a strong vision, and drive to that vision
  • For global rollouts, bring in all regions to learn the new tool together. Make sure everyone starts using and understanding from day 1
  • Do everything you can to get the customer to the right agent the first time


Quote –  “We strive for customer service that is globally scalable, yet personalized and effective.

For Yahoo, the customer experience is a journey. They get over 1 billion page views a month, and knew that adding more agents or resources wasn’t a feasible solution for their volume problem. Thus, innovation was their only option. How did they accomplish this while also driving down support costs and improving the overall customer experience? The answer is Service Cloud and adopting industry best practices.

Best Practices:

  • Automate repetitive tasks – This applies to both both customers and agents. Make issue resolution an easier/faster experience through automation
  • Proactive Messaging – For known product problems, Yahoo provides proactive messaging to their customers, which has been a  great case deflection tool.
  • Cross Train Agents – Make it so agents have domain expertise across multiple products
  • Optimize Support Channels – Through data analysis, figure out the right channel for the right problem
  • Constantly Update Knowledge Bases – Cost to update a knowledge base is a lot cheaper than the cost per case
  • Focus on Root Problem –Perform root cause analysis to ensure issues don’t happen again

Yahoo realizes that customer support varies by region and by product, so they work hard to ensure the right support expertise and channel is provided to the customer based their unique circumstance and issue.


Quote – “We’re on a mission to enable seamless transitions from self-service to customer service.

Walgreens deployed Service Cloud about a year and half ago, and continues to be extremely focused on customer engagement. Historically, Walgreens was very silo’d with every ancillary service managing customer interactions separately. They lacked a single view of the customer across all lines of business. As part of the effort moving to Service Cloud, they were focused on treating their customers as “one customer” no matter which product they were using. This helps provide valuable insights across the entire company, and allows them to present the right information and services to the right customer, at the optimal time.

Solution Highlights:

  • Created a single view of their customers by integrating across all lines of business in Service Cloud
  • Allowed customers to receive support through any channel they prefer
  • Integrated legacy systems with Service Cloud to ensure their agents had all customer information in a single view
  • Utilizing skilled-based routing so customers get to the right agent the first time
  • Performing a CTI Integration to boost the power of their phone support channel

All this has saved Walgreens a significant amount of money on cross training agents, and increased customer satisfaction dramatically.

The Future of Customer Service

The future of customer service revolves around three key trends in the industry – productivity, personalization and omni-channel experiences. Delivering an exceptional customer support experience has become increasingly important. Brands need to be thinking about their vision for their service business, and how they can approach things like knowledge management, self-service, digital experiences and more with Service Cloud. If you haven’t seen Salesforce’s recent “State of Customer Service” report, I encourage you to go download a copy. There’s a lot of great information in there to get you started on the right path.

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