In advance of a webinar I am hosting next week on the topic of “What’s the Next New Channel?” comes news that a technology company called Credgenics has released a WhatsApp-based two-way chat platform for debt collectors.
Right now, the product is only available in India, which has 500 million people using WhatsApp, a messaging app that is similar to sending text messages, but offers greater encryption and privacy protection than text messages. WhatsApp is the preferred mode of digital communication in India, so it made sense for the company to launch the product, called ChatR. Companies can share reminders, payment links, and digital notices while consumers can share proofs of payment, and other documents in a secure environment.
WhatsApp isn’t yet tremendously popular here in the United States — about 80 million people here are using it — but this is yet another example of a company attempting to meet people where they prefer to communicate. Credgenics is encouraging consumers to interact with lenders and collectors in a more user friendly and convenient manner, which hopefully leads to more resolutions. ChatR can increase borrower engagement by 2.5 times over other channels and offers delivery rates as high as 85%. Adopting ChatR can allow customers to lower communication costs by as much as 18%, the company said.
“ChatR has been designed to address the specific needs of the collections industry while incorporating customer focused service practices across other industries,” said Anand Agrawal, the co-founder of Credgenics. “The solution takes forward Credgenics’ approach to encourage the use of soft digital nudges that respect borrower’s privacy and preferences while expediting debt resolution and improving customer experience.”
ChatR provides collectors with an audit trail of messages shared between borrowers and collection agents, supports pre-defined message templates and multi-lingual conversations.