Freespee

Here’s What Makes A Good Mobile SDK

Mobile SDK

A software development kit (SDK) is a way to enrich an existing system with advanced functionality, meaning it is a kit that provides tools for developers to create applications on a specific hardware platform or within a software framework.

Mobile SDK

A mobile SDK allows users to create dynamic apps for either desktop or mobile. Developers would rely on the best mobile SDKs to build applications that are both robust and reliable.

According to Statista, “in 2018, 52.2 per cent of all website traffic worldwide was generated through mobile phones,” with almost 2 million apps available through Apple and Android portals. There is significant competition in this space due to the rapid growth of the smartphone market – developing apps that stand out is often down to the quality of the SDK used to create it.

What makes a good Mobile SDK?

Security

A good kit would have an excellent track record of security; meaning no backdoors or untoward intentions for your customer’s data, like bagging their information through app permissions.

Easily Integrated and sustainable

Integrating a mobile SDK into an existing app should be easy, if it isn’t then you may need to reconsider your provider. It should not take a ton of time or man power to integrate an SDK, at the most a few hours.  

Additionally, ensure that the app built using the chosen kit does not drain a consumer’s battery.

The Problem With Third-Party Feedback Systems

third-party feedback systems

If a company’s success revolves around the day-to-day happiness of customers then asking them for relevant feedback is a good way to clarify what they want. In this day and age, most people don’t want or have time to fill out long forms or surveys, no one likes homework.

Creating customisable feedback workflows that get to the point of what the company needs to know and what the customer wants to say is the sweet spot. However, using third-party feedback platforms can create a separation between brand and buyer, and take away the ability to manage that connection. Let’s look at a few reasons why a third party route might not be best.

The timing is off

Delayed feedback is problematic. Why? Because timing is everything when it comes to responding to customers. The ideal practice is to reach out within 24 hours but many companies rely on costly third-party feedback systems to manage this process which can take longer.  

They also usually have a generic structure which sends out survey emails to customers, sometimes more than a day after an interaction.

Lack of visibility

This correspondence doesn’t always contain the context of what transpired between the company and their customers – leading to a lack of visibility over which channel influenced the commentary.

Reluctance to integrate

Adding to this, data collected by a third-party system tends to not be integrated with the customer journey, therefore analytics can be inaccurate. Feedback data shouldn’t be out of the loop.

How do we solve this?

There are established systems using urls, call recordings and other features, that can create a 360 view of the customer journey and easily integrate vital feedback data into a dashboard. It depends on whether a company requires this level of functionality or not. Frankly, it’s less costly to have it all in one place.

Before updating a CRM system, consider the impact of customer feedback on the growth of a brand, this can be done by ensuring that this data is always embedded in the original customer experience.

A Few Integrations Aimed At Improving Customer Relationships

Meeting customer expectations during a purchase journey now require segmenting and analysing a large pool of data to create a workflow that will hopefully nurture leads and make ideal use of a consumer’s time. Luckily the technology is there to manage these intricacies for digital enterprises. We’ve touched on integrations before and this round we’re looking at a few that can step up your CRM game.

Maximise your advertising lifecycle with cross-platform measurement

Making an impact is the basis of every campaign but managing the multiple platforms used by consumers can confuse the metrics a bit, leading to a short-sighted campaign. Cross-platform measurement systems have revolutionised how businesses understand their various datasets. Before this introduction, it was difficult to keep up with consumer behaviour as it nimbly adapted to the changing technologies. However, platforms like comScore have altered the campaign process starting with data scale first and going from there. “We believe that scale drives quality,” comScore CEO Fulgoni told MediaPost. “You can’t start with a panel and build up on it.” Scale is vital especially in a world where multiple screens are utilised at one time, by measuring the overall impact of a fragmented digital media environment, it’s easier to build an ironclad campaign.
Learn more about Freespee’s comScore integration here.

Become a conversion hero

Optimising a website for higher conversion rates is a very complicated way of describing how to make a site desirable to droves of click-happy people — whether it be buying something or spending a length of time researching a car. Conversions are when customers follow through, creating a desirable space for this to happen is a priority for most online-centric businesses. WPO stats found that 53% of visits to mobile sites are abandoned after 3 seconds according to research from Google’s DoubleClick. Technology offered by a platform such as Webtrends Optimize uses both A/B testing and more in-depth multivariate testing to boost the customer’s experience across multiple screens and units. The testing is whittled down to even the colour button an audience prefers clicking. In this digital age, figuring out what your customers want is based on more than just a gut feeling, delving into the incidentals of their online interactions is essential to upping that conversion rate.
Learn more about Freespee’s WebTrends integration here.

Figure out where your digital spend is most effective

Knowing whether programmatic advertising has any punch is down to the numbers, but often with a highly competitive digital environment plus separation of online and offline data pools, it can be difficult to achieve an accurate bottom line.
Additionally, “You’re fighting for customers on a digital battlefield where Google and Facebook command nearly 80% of internet time and over 60% of online ad dollars,” says Marin Software. With this in mind elevating advertisement performance is the first step towards victory, delivering dynamic campaigns targeted at specific customers can make it easier to understand where the revenue derived from those ads is coming from. Custom-made algorithms can automatically adjust set budgets per top performing audiences, helping brands save money and refocus on lucrative client pools.
Learn more about Freespee’s Marin Software integration here.


These are only a few of our integrations up for grabs. Check more of Freespee’s multiple integrations on our website.
Via: MediaPost, The Drum, WPO Stats.

Exploring The Diverse World Of System Integrations

The concept of integrations in software or iPaaS (integration platform as a service), can be confusing to anyone outside of a technological background, after scouring the internet it is pretty tricky to find what one needs on the topic explained in layman’s terms. 
Most cloud-based businesses work with a wide range of applications and platforms to form a suite which keeps their day-to-day activities running at peak optimisation. The way an enterprise bunches their existing digital arrangement together is essential, that’s where integration friendly platforms are very useful.
“For example, a human resources applicant tracking system is a standalone product, but most are integrated with payroll providers, background assessment tools and interviewing platforms. This [system] creates a full suite by combining the best provider in these three industries,” explains Forbes.
Recently, most digital enterprises favour a platform that can adapt to multiple integrations; it’s simply easier to keep all data in one place while following similar procedures – plus its becoming the norm.
“The iPaaS market is growing because more [enterprise architect] professionals see dynamic integration as the best solution to integrate cloud-based systems of engagement — like Marketo or Salesforce — with their cloud or on-premises system of records,” wrote Henry Peyret, a principal analyst at Forrester who penned “The Forrester Wave: iPaaS for Dynamic Integration, Q3 2016 as reported by Jessie Scardina of Tech Target.
There are multiple terms cropping up as the market continues to dominate within the industry, we’ve laid out a few definitions below to help flesh out this somewhat complicated topic.

Native Integrations

Simply put, a native integration is a program that has been developed for use on a particular platform or device. It’s usually an API (Application Programming Interface) that can adapt to another system and work within it, immersing itself into the process. Without this handy creation, an enterprise would have to switch between multiple modes – such as their marketing automation or call centre, losing the cross-channel perspective of a customer’s journey.

Cloud Integrations

Cloud integrations encourage multiple programs to share the information they collect in the ever mysterious cloud. It works because, in the fast-paced world of commerce, it’s much easier to stay one step ahead with real-time data. Cloud integrations aid in this by maintaining data integrity and avoiding data silos — which are never good.

Data Silos

This brings us to data silos, which can be problematic. A data silo is a repository of stagnant information that is controlled by one department and often kept apart from the rest of a company’s data cache. They are elusive and usually erupt from legacy technology. One solution for this problem is implementing a platform that can integrate it all into one system.
 

 


As we move further into relying on technology to manage and solve both professional and personal management issues, its good to know that there is a digital progression happening along with our needs. Who knew integrating could be so simple?
Via: Forbes, Tech Target, Bedrock Data.

A Short Explanation Of Dynamic Phone Numbers

analytics - dynamic phone number

Simply put, dynamic call numbers allow companies to track all inbound calls to their business. They are unique phone numbers assigned to each visitor, displayed ‘dynamically’ on the brand website or in a digital advertising campaign. It’s a handy tool that allows marketers to see how their marketing activity, including advertising, is affecting inbound call volume and measure ROI (Return On Investment). Brands can see a visitor’s complete contextual history – including the source and medium that led them there to the page and even the page from which they decided to reach out.

How Does DNI Work?

Standardly, one line of javascript is added to the website or app, which serves a unique number to each visitor as soon as they arrive on the site. Once a visitor has perused the site and chosen to call, the javascript connects the two phone numbers.

Why It Works

A benefit of using Dynamic Numbers is knowing exactly how successful marketing campaigns like paid search (SEM) and social media are in driving calls and ultimately, benefiting a brand’s bottom line. DNI provides real-time data which can allow businesses to better track where their funds are making the most significant impact. It can also record a customer’s collective communication history with a brand based on one number which remains consistent throughout. No matter who they converse with or the size of their team.

Using dynamic numbers also improves the visibility a brand has over the customer’s journey from research to purchase. Often one call (or any one touchpoint) won’t close be the final sale, so dynamic numbers offer an opportunity to connect every touchpoint by recording the user’s online behaviour post conversation. This data can be retrieved in future conversations brand teams have with that user, enriching their experience

The SEO and Call Tracking Myth

There was a misconception that dynamic number insertion or call tracking would hurt a brand’s SEO clout. This just isn’t true, when done correctly DNI is more beneficial than harmful to SEO.

“The problem is that the call tracking industry has traditionally done a very poor job of educating marketers about what correct use of call tracking actually is,” writes Search Engine Journal.

The initial confusion came about thanks to NAP (Name, Address, Phone Number). Google likes these elements to be consistent across all channels, having multiple numbers can confuse the algorithm. However, this only applies to directories and has nothing to do with on-site DNI. In that regard, companies are just fine and dandy.

Word to the wise though, sprinkling call tracking numbers throughout the internet’s directories will definitely harm SEO and hurt a brand in the long run.

“As long as a precaution is made to make certain your tracking number doesn’t get scraped by Google, or some other authority, tracking numbers are totally fine,” writes Adam Steele via Search Engine Journal.


There is no denying that DNI is helpful for both ends of the purchase. On the company side, it produces a bounty of data that reveals the intricacies of the customer journey. From the customer’s perspective, it can greatly reduce the time it takes to find what they are looking for from a brand.
Via: Search Engine Journal

How to give mobile users (aka keen call abandoners) more attention

If you’ve not read our blog post on Segments & Recipes yet, I recommend you read it first. It will give you a bit of context.
We’ve discussed the ‘expectation economy’ in previous blog posts – it’s a growing industry that we’re obsessed with at Freespee.
As customers have become aware of their growing power to shape a company’s future (and more importantly its bottom line) they’ve changed the consumer landscape – for the better.
In an economy where word of mouth has the power to instantly turn a local product launch into a global one, or reward exceptional customer experience with a legion of loyal and ‘cheerleading’ followers, the customer is once again becoming the priority for brands who want to survive and succeed.
These expectations have been driven by digitalisation and increasing mobile usage, in particular the immediate response that consumers now expect from brands.
Our data proves the (what may seem obvious) assumption that the device used to browse a website has a huge impact on the caller’s behaviour and their expectations of that call.
If the future caller visits your website with their smartphone, they are 30-40% more inclined to abandon the call quicker if put on hold or in a waiting queue.
Like I said, we’re obsessed with the expectation economy. This is because it highlights a problem that we want to help fix. We want your future customers to enjoy a smoother experience.
We can do this in a number of ways and over the next few weeks we’ll be releasing a series of videos that show you how. Using our new Segments & Recipes features, we’ll show you how to segment your calling customers and implement workflows to direct their call experience.
 
Up first: routing calls based on the visitor’s device (which, for the purpose of this example, is a mobile)
 

 When we were putting the feelers out with this product, most customers we approached said they’d most likely want to use segmentation and workflows to route calls coming from potential customers who are browsing their website on a mobile (presumably smartphone) and then calling from that device.
This use case allows you to create a segment that isolates website visitors browsing on a smartphone who go on to call your brand, ensuring that they are not held in a long call queue.
It’s super simple to set up (as you can see from the video above) but I’ve also outlined it below in 5 steps:
1. Create the segment by selecting the criteria ‘Device’ from the drop down list and choosing ‘Mobile’. This audience will be isolated from the rest:

 
Then create the workflow:
2. Click to create a new rule
3. Select the segment that you want to apply to this workflow. Define where the call will be routed – to a specific number or to a group of people
4. How the call will be distributed – broadcasted (sent to multiple people at the same time) or cascaded (sent in a defined order)
5. Once ready, click the slider to activate the workflow – all calls matching the segment will be routed based on the workflow

It’s in this simple way that companies can switch from being unable to filter callers or witnessing high abandonment rates to being able to prioritise calls and increase sales leads in a few clicks.
 
Next week
We’ll be looking into how you can route calls based on specific keywords. This is particularly useful for customers who want to prioritise callers who have been searching for either competitors or who are in the active researching phase of their journey.

If you are interested in trying these new features, please get in touch with your Customer Success Manager. If you are unsure who that is, please email henrietta.lawrence@freespee.com
If you are not a Freespee customer yet, please email sales@freespee.com to book a demo.

The Quiet Swedish Company Whose Software You Probably Already Use

This is a translation of an interview with Carl Holmquist, Freespee co-founder & CEO, published by Mimi Dilling from DI Digital on 1st January, 2017
http://digital.di.se/
“We got off to a false start at the beginning”, Carl Holmquist, CEO and co-founder of Freespee
When Carl Holmquist and Tobias Lindgren founded communications platform Freespee six years ago they initially met with considerable resistance. Now the company is attracting venture capital and major customers.
An ‘old’ approach to web-based customer communications saw online customers managing their own buying process with little interaction with the vendor. Freespee founders Carl Holmquist and Tobias Lindgren saw an opportunity to make it easier for brands and consumers to communicate and drive superlative customer experience.
“We were hitting our heads against a brick wall when we started talking about this six years ago,” says Freespee’s CEO Carl Holmquist. “Back then, everyone thought the Internet was self-service, but that’s simply not true. Customers are just as loyal to online stores as they are to physical stores; the only difference is that if companies are unable to provide a good customer experience online, it’s very easy for the customer to take their business elsewhere.”
Freespee has flown somewhat under the radar so far and has even been described as an obscure Swedish company . Few people know who the founders are, despite the fact they have acquired a huge sum of SEK 143 million in venture capital. This means it is more than likely that online shoppers will have encountered their software.
Freespee’s technology sits on top of the sales systems and customer systems of client companies, handling communication between them and their customers. One of its functions is to help companies answer their customers’ queries through platforms such as live chat, email and over the phone.
Read this article (in Swedish only) for more information: Swedish Freespee brings in SEK 90 million – “We are anonymous” 
“It’s like when you’re waiting for the train and it turns out to be running late,” says Holmquist. If the train operator doesn’t let you know, you get really irritated. The train might arrive at any time, which means you can’t leave the platform. But if you’re told that it’ll be leaving in half an hour, you can go and buy a coffee or something while you’re waiting,” says Carl Holmquist.
Last autumn, the Uppsala based company obtained a total of SEK 90 million from French venture capital firm Ventech and from their current owners SunstoneCapital (NTL) and Inventure (NTL). It also landed a host of major customers, such as JLLeBayBNP ParibasLloydsBank, the Marriott hotel chain and car giant FiatChrysler.
“And whether you’re a customer waiting for a train, sitting in a telephone queue or waiting for a response to a live chat, the communication about what to expect is pivotal to a customer’s experience,” continues Carl Holmquist.
“It’s like when you decide to call up a company. Rather than the website telling you that there’s a seven minute wait, you call them and make your way through the voice prompts before being told how long you have to wait. Why didn’t they just say so straight away, you can’t help wondering. This is something that could ruin a customer’s experience.”
“The problem here is not that the company doesn’t want to talk to you. They love talking to customers. As long as they’re talking to you, they’ve won because they’ve created a customer relationship.”
According to Carl Holmquist, 98% of visitors to a company’s website leave without buying anything. This is a problem that companies are only just realising exists and want to address; assistance from Freespee is just one of the ways they are trying to deal with the issue. Thanks to this trend, the company has grown so much that it now employs 40 staff and has offices in London, Barcelona, Paris and Cologne. But Freespee was not an obvious success from the outset.
“We got off to a bit of a false start at the beginning. We thought we could solve all the problems associated with communication between our customers and their online visitors. But such problems can vary hugely from organisation to organisation, and that’s where we dropped the ball. Fortunately, we were able to remedy this when our investor Sunstone came on board in 2012.”
Aided by this autumn’s capital injection, the company will continue to develop its software by exploring artificial intelligence-based features. Freespee is also considering expanding into the United States to get closer to US customers who are already using the company’s service on the European market.
“We now know exactly what we are doing and things are really starting to take off. We’re at the heart of the ecosystem for enabling new consumer behaviours,”declares Carl Holmquist.
The original article in Swedish can be found here: http://digital.di.se/artikel/freespees-grundare-vi-trampade-snett-i-borjan

Topics: Customer Experienceinterviewceo

The one common channel that most marketers have yet to master

From social media to email to live chat (to name but a few) marketers have become experts at tracking and managing their users’ activity across many channels. But there’s one that marketers still find challenging: the phone.
Yes, the good old phone. The device that half of us carry with us constantly and check three times or more each and every hour*.
Whether your business is an automotive, insurance, banking, real estate, travel or marketplace company, your call centre receives thousands of calls every day.
These phone calls carry important data about your customers’ interests and feedback.
So how can you integrate your calls into your customer journey to leverage these golden nuggets of information? How can you action your call activity to provide the best customer experience possible?
Well, Freespee lets you do just that…in the most efficient way there is.
Our recently upgraded integration with Salesforce empowers your agents to deliver a “feel-good” phone experience. Our technology updates your database in real-time ready for you to power your marketing campaigns, increase that user satisfaction score and ultimately bring more revenue.
So, are you interested in leveraging the power of your Salesforce capabilities with your phone call activity? Find out how today, contact one of our conversation cloud specialists.

About Freespee
Freespee is a real time conversation cloud for marketers that places every phone and text conversation into its digital context. Marketers use Freespee to monitor, manage and personalise the experience of every customer that wants to have a conversation with their brands through their desktop web, mobile web and mobile apps.

*52% of smartphone owners check their phone a few times an hour or more. Source: Gallup. 

Freespee Secures €9.25M Series B Funding By Ventech

French VC firm leads funding round in London-based real time conversation cloud company

Freespee, the real-time conversation cloud technology company has secured €9.25 million in Series B funding in a round led by French venture capital firm Ventech SA, marking the latter’s first ever investment in a Nordic company.

Joining as part of this investment round is growth debt provider Silicon Valley Bank, alongside existing investors in Freespee, Sunstone Capital and Inventure. The investment will be used to fuel product development and sees Ventech’s Tero Mennander join the Freespee board.

Freespee enables marketers to monitor, manage and personalise the experience of every customer conversation taking place through desktop web, mobile web and mobile apps. The company was founded by Swedish software engineers at the end of 2009, with offices in London, Paris, Barcelona and Uppsala, Sweden.

The new investment round will enable Freespee to accelerate the development of its industry-leading conversation cloud technology, which is used globally by brands such as Allianz, Lloyds, eBay, Bupa, Marriott Hotels and Peugeot. The company already manages millions of conversations every month across 20 countries using its innovative technology.

As part of the new investment round, Ventech Venture Partner, Tero Mennander, will join the board at Freespee. As head of the Ventech Helsinki office, Mennander leads the firm’s activity in the Nordics, and brings 25 years of experience in the technology sector across various roles on the entrepreneurial, as well as the investors’ side.

“There is no simple way for a brand to understand how customer communications through phone, chat and email influence and help grow its internet business. We’re building a cloud that gives marketers and e-commerce professionals access to these legacy technology stacks. This investment round will enable us to propel our ambitions to make internet businesses more human and personal,” said Carl Holmquist, Freespee co-founder and CEO.

Holmquist continued: “By working with Ventech and our other investors, new and old, we will continue to pioneer new ways to allow our customers to monitor, manage and personalise the experience of every conversation taking place through their desktop web, mobile web and apps.”

“Freespee is a groundbreaking innovator, with technology that is forging the future of enterprise software and Software as a Service (SaaS) in the real time conversation cloud space,” said Tero Mennander, Venture Partner at Ventech and newly-appointed board member at Freespee. “This sector is demonstrating enormous innovation globally, with Freespee at the leading edge of this wave, and we’re delighted to be joining their team.”

Conversational commerce, now, in the Google stack

Telling and selling is over, the conversation arrives
So with conversational commerce and the scene set let’s take it back a step and place this into a deliverable context that’s available right now. How can you be making the most of your customers conversational data for marketing.
Three huge areas…. being blunt.
Display advertising, Search advertising and Website analytics, and we have three plug-and-play real-time integrations with Google for you.

Google Doubleclick – Supercharge your display
Our users take advantage of our plug and play Doubleclick real-time integration to make sure they see any customer conversation event alongside their display and video advertising campaigns. We help our customers make sure Doubleclick can act on any type of customer engagement, i.e checkout, chat and phone calls. Freespee data offers businesses the ability to prospect for new audiences on more than just the traditional checkout event, and delivers re-targeting of customers that showed high purchase intent through chat or the phone.

Google Doubleclick Search – Enhance every campaign
In the same vein as Doubleclick, we offer our customers a plug and play Doubleclick search real-time integration that places customer communication events alongside their search advertising campaigns. Down to the keyword, Freespee users know what campaign influenced their customers to enter into a conversation. Knowing the outcome of the conversation provides insight into developing keyword strategies that are optimised to acquire traffic suited to business goals.

Google Analytics – Add your missing audiences
Conversion optimisation is a hot topic, how do we get more out of what we have, and with Google recently announcing a free website a/b testing solution, they are trying to make it even easier for you to optimise the digital experience for your visitors. Synchronising the Freespee conversation cloud with your Google 360 account empowers you to see your visitors and how communication events for various visitor experiments influence your online sales. As Freespee is agnostic to the conversational interface the customer chooses to use, you can manage the data from all of your customers conversation threads across voice and text in one platform.

Freespee offers advertising campaigns responsive to customer conversations
Conversational commerce represents an evolutionary step forward from both a traditional outbound acquisition and retention marketing focus. This is why our customers choose Freespee.. Conversational data is of strategic importance in staying ahead of the market and competitors.
Unless you have complete visibility and control over every inbound conversational event, you are a passive business in understanding holistically your customers behaviour, motivations, and how your brand is servicing your customers.
Our vision is to place marketers at the centre of every customer conversation and give them the power to improve experiences on a global scale.