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3 Ways AI Helps Media Companies Improve Customer Service

Families enjoying subscription services at home.
Engage your media subscribers by upleveling your subscription management software with AI. [d3sign | Getty]

Subscriber management software could be the key to leveling up your customer service for media companies.

It seems effective service today requires clairvoyance into the needs and wants of your customers – they expect companies to recognize the problem instantly and proactively solve it. That’s especially true when it comes to subscriber management software for the media and entertainment industry. 

At the same time, economic conditions and increased competition are tightening belts across the industry, and companies are expected to do more with less. 

Yet subscribers want personalized experiences not only in the content they’re served but also in the customer service they receive. And they’re more willing than ever to change providers to get it. 

According to the Salesforce Media and Entertainment Insights Report, the annual turnover rate for streaming services is nearly one-fifth of all subscribers. So, it shouldn’t come as a surprise that customer satisfaction is the top priority for media and entertainment companies to decrease churn. Second on that list is improving operational efficiencies. It’s much cheaper to retain a subscriber than it is to attract a new one. 

That’s where AI and automation come in, helping deliver the best bang for your buck when it comes to creating a great – and personalized – customer experience. Here’s how that powerful technology can enhance customer service and make it run more efficiently. 

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1. Proper implementation of automation and AI 

Automation and AI, when implemented properly, is not a replacement for employees, but rather an empowering tool that expands capacity for strategic work aimed at innovation and customer satisfaction. 

So why is this type of efficiency so critical for media and entertainment companies? 

A sizable portion of automation and AI users in the industry cite benefits to customer experience, customer retention, and efficiency. Using self-service experiences and engagement channels are more efficient so you can scale support to every customer. Pairing processes, like case and incident management, with automation and AI increases productivity. Increasing operational efficiency cost savings at a time when competition among services is getting more and more intense can be a huge difference maker. 

Still, many media companies have yet to implement this technology, according to the Media and Entertainment Insights Report. Thirty-eight percent of product processes are mostly or completely manual, and 39% of churn prediction is manual. Of the companies that have implemented automation, over half report improved employee productivity (59%), employee experience (52%), and customer experience (49%). 

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2. Ensure subscriber management is equally as important as content

We all know most streaming services utilize AI to provide personalized content recommendations, Netflix’s revolutionary recommendation engine being a prime example. It’s clearly an important part of the customer experience. But it’s also necessary to take that a step further; content may be king, but the subscriber experience is equally important. 

Quick answers and proactive resolution of any issue can mean the difference between a customer staying or going. So, what does a successful approach to service for a media company look like that can be scaled to millions?

  • Unify and secure your data with a robust CRM to ensure all service inquiries — whether it’s billing, technical, or subscriber services — come with a complete view of a customer. 
  • Enlist chatbots for basic service needs with advanced AI to provide smarter, more personalized responses — now capable of analyzing customer sentiment. AI can even auto-generate personalized replies across any channel so agents can focus on other business-critical tasks and provide service more efficiently.
  • Smart automation helps to serve up knowledge articles and relevant information to subscribers looking to find answers to their questions. Generative AI can create, edit, and help promote the articles, saving time and costs. 
  • AI can also augment live agent experiences by suggesting next steps or identifying internal experts to fix issues. It can also generate service summaries, a critical picture of a customer’s history, for a better view of the journey. 

Here’s how it would look in action.

Say a subscriber wants to pause their streaming service for several months while they’re on an extended trip. The ideal experience is a low-touch, self-service interaction they can handle on their own. They have the option to choose the dates of service to pause, and they get a confirmation email — automatically sent with automation — and they’re done – in less than 3 minutes.

They also have the option to easily restart service, all set up with automation and AI that schedules emails to the subscriber reminding them to restart their service. All of this keeps the customer happy, even when they get back to reality from their vacation.

3. Increase efficiency and improve customer experience – how one media company did it

Grupo Globo, Brazil’s largest media company that operates Globoplay, a subscription video-on-demand service that streams a billion hours of content every year, implemented a multi-cloud technology and data platform to help better understand its subscribers, create more personalized customer experience and increase customer engagement with its brand. Globoplay needed to provide better support to its subscribers, streamline service delivery, and reduce the high cost of servicing customers associated with its customer-support call center.

So it rolled out an AI-powered virtual assistant chatbot that provides personalized recommendations based on customers’ past interactions. This enables customers to resolve common issues instantly, without needing to speak with an agent. This has also helped reduce costs associated with supporting its customers.

Their bottom line saw a positive impact almost immediately. They saw a 10% reduction in the cost of providing customer support. Almost a third of subscribers now resolve their problems with only the help of the chatbot. And, subscription sales have increased by 209% and retention rate by 30% year over year.

The right subscriber management software mix 

Subscriber management software for media and entertainment companies is clearly as important as the quality of content they deliver. It’s just another edge over your competitors in this increasingly competitive and uncertain market. 

Enhancing that experience with a powerful AI strategy so your teams can make better decisions, save time, and increase efficiency – throughout the subscriber journey, from acquisition, engagement, service, and retention – is just added fuel to help your media company find new pathways to success. 

Gaby Hosokawa
Gaby Hosokawa Senior Product Marketing Manager, Media & Entertainment

Gaby Hosokawa is the Senior Product Marketing Manager for Media & Entertainment at Salesforce. She has 15 years of experience in the world of Tech and Media & Entertainment industry, including at Ogilvy in Brasil and Dell Technologies, before joining Salesforce.

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