PHYGITAL refers to a blending of the physical (PHY-) and the digital (-GITAL) aspects of a brand experience. This trend has proliferated in the consumer retail world and has made inroads into our telecommunications businesses.
Phygital may sound silly, but it captures the concept of elevating a physical or in-person experience with a digital component – or the other way around.
The retail industry was keen to jump on the phygital bandwagon even before the Covid-19 pandemic. Retailers are attempting to design phygital experiences to breathe life into an otherwise struggling sector that is trying to regain footing against eCommerce giants. To entice shoppers to visit a physical store, the store must offer a more compelling experience.
The goal in retail is to provide a customer experience which includes the sensory and human connection of visiting a store with an overlay of an ultra-personalized digital experience.
For example, online shopping patterns lets online retailers personalize offers and suggest products. Apps with customer loyalty programs let stores such as Starbucks offer customers personalized discounts and extra conveniences when using their app.
Expectation = Convenience
For millennials and younger consumers, the difference between physical and digital retail platforms does not exist anymore. They already expect the convenience and personalization of interacting with a brand when they want and where they want. That’s why phygital strategies aim to completely connect and meld the online and offline worlds.
With Augmented Reality and Virtual Reality expanding into retail, gaming and other industries, our customers and our employees are already being immersed into a phygital world for their personal and professional lives.
Phygital = Unification
Unified Communications as a Service (UCaaS) is our telecommunications industry answer to providing phygital experiences for our customers. UCaaS provides seamless customer communication between call centers, devices and platforms. Moving the customer journey back and forth, real-time, across chat, email, text and call center reps is the epitome of being phygital.
iAgent = Phygital
At iTelecom we’ve even stolen a page from the retail phygital playbook, when we launched our iAgent program in August.
The iAgent program overlays our customized person-to-person human contact with our support team, and a first-to-market app that puts everything an agent needs at their fingertips. For example, agents can chat directly with carriers via our iAgent app.
It’s an exciting time to see how our physical and digital worlds will continue to immerse us in new experiences and products.