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inContact Gives Activision The Edge it Needs In Holiday Game Shopping

October 02, 2012
By Steve Anderson, Contributing Writer

With Black Friday (News - Alert) only a little over a month and a half away, smart retailers as well as brand names are starting to look more carefully at how they'll be getting products out in front of the buying public. With a bad economy still hanging over the heads of many potential holiday shoppers, companies are being extra careful in how they'll work their marketing mix to get the best possible bang for their collective buck. That was what drove Activision (News - Alert) to inContact back in 2009, a lesson that still has plenty of value in today's market.

Back in late 2008, Activision was riding high. With the Guitar Hero franchise being one of the hottest items in video game purchasing, it was bringing in serious revenue for the company. With that popularity, however, came a big problem; Activision's phone system wasn't putting out the kind of "star power" necessary to carry Guitar Hero straight to the top of the charts.

Activision's 10 year-old phone switch simply wasn't up to the task of handling the 85,000 calls that the customer service department received, especially since it could only handle 24 calls at once. But what to do? Shell out big money for a call system that could handle a holiday load...that would sit mostly idle through the rest of the year? Activision's answer was to turn to inContact.

The inContact system not only allowed Activision to handle the holiday load, but also allowed it to scale back when the holiday load was no longer holiday heavy. Plus, it also gave the company access to new performance metrics, which led to improvements in customer service, as well as the ability to operate an outsourced call center on the same platform as their own internal call center.

Missing calls for any business is a potential disaster. Every missed call may well represent a customer going to a competitor to do business, and enough of those leave the business with no customers to call their own. Having a system in place that can handle the call volume necessary to handle all those customers is therefore vital. But having that kind of system in place as just as system can be expensive.

Worse yet, it can be wasteful; planning for the high water marks only leaves a lot of time where the system itself is, to use a phrase, high and dry. Why buy a system that will go mostly unused? Thus, scalability becomes an important part of the process, and allows for a system that can not only handle the biggest call volumes, but isn't running at full tilt all the time, especially when there are no calls to receive.

A system like inContact's may not be right for every business, but it certainly was right for Activision during the 2008 - 2009 Christmas season. Looking into an inContact system, meanwhile, should produce plenty of dividends in its own right.

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Edited by Allison Boccamazzo

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