By Ravi Saraogi, co-founder and president of Uniphore APAC
Video conferencing platforms have made remote working possible during the global COVID-19 pandemic around the world today. For the Philippines, which is said to have the most extensive and strict lockdowns, video conferencing allows businesses to keep operating and consumers to stay connected despite being physically separated. We have seen this widespread adoption of video chats around the world.
According to a report from Research and Markets, the video conferencing market in the Asia-Pacific region alone is expected to reach US $ 3,432.4 million by 2027 and is expected to grow at a CAGR of 11.4% from 2020 to 2027. This means that – locked or not – video chats are here to stay.
Foster collaboration, connection and continuity
We have all experienced firsthand how video chats can help us stay connected during the pandemic. On a personal level, we are constantly looking for ways to stay engaged while being confined to our home, away from our colleagues, friends and family. Professionally, businesses, companies and educational institutions in the region are forced to conduct their operations online due to the tightened measures and the restrictions implemented.
Specific industries have also adapted well to video chats. The education sector, for example, has contributed to the trend of skills upgrading, retraining and online learning with the physical closure of educational institutions around the world. The customer experience (CX) industry is also moving in a similar direction. With constant changes in travel restrictions, vaccine demands, health concerns, online shopping, and more, the industry continues to receive an overwhelming influx of calls – audio and video – from consumers. . It is observed that more and more consumers are ready to make video calls whenever it is deemed necessary to solve problems faster or get better deals.
Overcome video fatigue and other challenges
Engaging in a video chat, however, requires a lot more focus than face-to-face interaction. This is because our mind has to work harder and consume more energy to process nonverbal signals such as facial expressions, tone, pitch of voice, and body language.
According to a Consumer Survey of Video Conversations: Trends, Failures and Wins, Filipinos are embarrassed by video calling, with one in three respondents (35%) saying they’ve been misinterpreted for their facial expressions. The survey also found that Filipinos disliked the idea of having to be “camera ready” all the time, seeing themselves in front of the camera, and preparing for video calls. Other challenges include not knowing if other call participants were engaged and having trouble feeling heard during calls.
Multitasking and distractions are also on the rise, further highlighting the dark side of video calling. The main activities Filipinos tend to do in a virtual meeting include watching or streaming online shows, using the bathroom, cleaning the house, and shopping online.
Embrace change with artificial intelligence
While people understand the benefits of video chats, there is a need to find ways to minimize levels of frustration to enable better understanding, engagement, and empathy.
One solution is to incorporate artificial intelligence, or AI, to help identify levels of emotion and engagement in real time, improve communication, and ultimately drive better business results. This will not be limited to regular video conferencing, but also opens up new use cases, affecting customer experience, sales, marketing, human resources and other critical areas of the business.
AI-powered video chats can help employers and employees stay connected at a time when remote working and social distancing are now part of our lives. This can be done using advanced facial emotion recognition and eye tracking technology to capture and analyze video interactions in real time to improve engagement between people. Technology can be relied on to detect signals that people may have missed and share tips to better engage audiences by detecting facial and eye movements, facial expressions of emotions, attention span and essential demographics, allowing people to feel heard during video calls. Automation can also resolve customer service issues faster, especially when it comes to more technical issues like setup and provide on-screen transcription to help reduce a speaker’s emphasis. during calls or presentations. This will help to develop closer ties with customers or customers and to close sales or business deals.
We still have a long way to go to make virtual interactions as seamless and effective as in-person conversations, but we’re getting there. This powerful combination of voice and video analytics will drive new waves of transformation by helping users feel better understood, accurately conveying non-verbal communication, avoiding distractions during calls, and maintaining motivation and engagement. .
Collectively, we can turn the use of video calls into an enjoyable experience for all by addressing frustrations and communication challenges, all with the help of additional tools to improve levels of interpersonal understanding.
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