How to reduce customer churn using insights from Tethr’s ChurnRx

Carl Schultze

August 1, 2023

As a contact center leader, your customer churn rate–the percentage of total customers lost during a specific time period–is likely one of the metrics that is constantly top of mind. Keeping existing customers is far more cost-effective than acquiring new ones, and building customer loyalty strengthens your brand reputation and grows market share.

But knowing your churn rate isn’t valuable if you don’t also understand the reasons customers stop doing business with you. By tapping into your customer conversation data, you can gain insight into the causes of customer churn–and how your contact center agents address them. However, quality assurance (QA) managers are typically only able to review a small percentage of conversations, and disposition codes or surveys are unable to capture many of the nuances of agent-customer interactions.

Our AI-powered conversation intelligence platform, Tethr, analyzes all of your customer interactions to give you a deeper understanding of your customers’ needs, agent behavior, and points of friction in the customer journey. Knowing the impact churn has on the customer experience and revenue, we recently introduced our ChurnRx dashboard to give you a centralized, fully customizable view of churn risk factors and arm you with the information you need to increase your customer retention.

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Understanding types of risk with ChurnRx

Tethr’s ChurnRx dashboard allows you to measure and take action on two types of churn risk:

Explicit churn risk occurs when a customer says they intend to stop buying from your business–or states they will cancel if certain remedy demands aren’t met. While it’s not possible to save every customer who threatens to churn, you can use conversation intelligence to identify trends in cancellation requests and coach your agents on the most effective save attempts.

Implicit churn risk occurs when a customer shows signs that they are likely to churn in the future. Within your customer conversations, these signs can be things like stating an outcome didn’t align with the customer’s expectation (e.g., “I was told this could be taken care of”) or that they’ve made repeated attempts to resolve an issue (e.g., “I’ve been trying to get this fixed for weeks”). By measuring these leading indicators, you can identify which customers are at risk and why, allowing you to address the issues that are in your control before customers reach the point of explicit churn.

Let’s take a closer look at how Tethr’s ChurnRx dashboard delivers insights on both types of churn risk so you can reduce your overall customer churn rate. 

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How to reduce explicit churn with ChurnRx

Tethr’s ChurnRx dashboard can help your contact center answer several critical questions about explicit churn, including:

  • What are the most common reasons for cancellation requests?
  • How effective are our agents at retaining customers who express a desire to leave?
  • What can we learn from the customers who did leave us to reduce churn in the future?

Tethr ingests 100% of your customer conversations and identifies churn indicators based on objective criteria, giving you a more complete view of your churn risk–and greater insight into how to reduce customer churn–than you could gain from manual QA and feedback surveys alone.

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Understand the reasons for cancellation requests

Tethr uses categories–collections of phrases that describe a specific concept or behavior–to identify the reasons why customers want to cancel. Categories related to common causes of churn (such as loss of income and bill dispute) come pre-configured in the platform, and we can work with you to train Tethr on new categories specific to your business.

Tracking the most common reasons for cancellation requests allows you to both measure the impact of known issues and uncover previously unknown issues. From there, you can determine which issues are within your company’s control and work with operational leaders to reduce customer churn.

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Train agents to handle explicit churn risk

In addition to understanding the reasons behind cancellation requests, it’s important to understand the impact your agents have on customers who are getting ready to churn. 

The ChurnRx dashboard gives you a view of each agent’s behavior and the frequency of activities that can help prevent churn, such as uncovering the reason for the cancellation request and making a save attempt. This allows you to identify agents who may need additional coaching on how to handle cancellation requests, as well as top performers your team can learn from.

The dashboard also breaks down each type of save offer by how frequently agents attempt it and how often it’s successful, giving you insight into what you should focus on coaching.

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Trigger automated follow-up notifications for cancellation requests

There may be situations where you want to escalate a cancellation request to try to save a customer–and Tethr can automate this process. You can configure automated notifications in a few ways:

  • Specify your trigger criteria and the exact data you want to share, then push this information to Salesforce or another CRM whenever that criteria is met.
  • Set up a cancellation request report in Tethr and send a notification via your email or Tethr itself whenever a new conversation is found with a cancellation request.
  • Set thresholds so that when certain criteria is met (e.g., you reach a specific volume of calls with churn signals), a notification goes to appropriate stakeholders.

These triggers ensure you’re identifying all conversations where there may be an opportunity to retain a customer and responding in a timely manner, improving the customer experience.

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Measure the impact of actions taken to prevent churn

The ChurnRx dashboard also allows you to keep a pulse on cancellation request trends and the impact your save attempts have on your customer retention rate. Views you can choose to show in the dashboard include your save attempt rate, the number of saved customers, and your saved customer lifetime value. These metrics allow you to track churn and retention trends over time and quantify the impact your contact center has on your retention rate.

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How to proactively address implicit churn risk with ChurnRx

While you can learn from explicit churn and potentially save customers even after they have requested to cancel, the best time to address churn risk is before your customers are getting ready to leave you. Tethr’s ChurnRx dashboard answers key questions about implicit churn risk, including:

  • What are some of the most common signs that a customer is thinking about leaving?
  • What are the pain points you’re hearing about most often that increase churn risk–and which ones can you control?
  • What agent behaviors are most effective at mitigating churn risk?

Answering these questions gives your contact center leaders the information they need to proactively address the biggest drivers of churn and save customers before it’s too late.

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Monitor leading indicators of churn

Your at-risk customers are likely showing signs of churning before they ever say, “I want to cancel.” However, there are thousands of phrases they can use to indicate they’re thinking about leaving–and a lot of nuances that can’t be captured in a single disposition code or post-interaction survey.

You can monitor leading indicators across every customer interaction in the ChurnRx dashboard, allowing you to identify and address the top issues leading to churn.

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Identify the churn risk factors your contact center can control

There’s no way to save all of your churn-risk customers, but once you’ve uncovered the different factors contributing to churn, you can focus on what you can control. ChurnRx gives you a view of churn reasons by volume and percentage of interactions so you can prioritize the agent coaching and operational changes that will have the biggest impact on your customer retention rate.

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Coach agents to reduce customer churn risk

One of the main factors your contact center can control is the coaching your agents receive on responding to churn risk. You can use Tethr’s ChurnRx dashboard to track agent behaviors that have proven to have a positive impact on customer satisfaction, such as advocacy, or a negative impact, such as powerless-to-help language. Measuring these behaviors across 100% of each agent’s interactions lets you objectively determine where to focus your coaching to improve agent performance and reduce customer churn.

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Reduce customer churn and increase loyalty with ChurnRx

The ChurnRx dashboard goes beyond just monitoring churn risk: it equips you and your fellow contact center leaders with the information you need to make policy, process, or coaching changes that reduce customer churn and increase loyalty. And while the out-of-the-box dashboard provides a useful starting point, it can also be customized and expanded upon to capture the actionable insights that matter most to your business.

Interested in seeing the dashboard for yourself? Schedule a call with our team of conversation intelligence experts.

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