Beyond Messaging: How to Properly use Slack for Business

Content Writer
October 16, 2023

Many businesses that use Slack only scratch the surface. They use it primarily for team communication. However, for businesses willing to think outside the box, Slack can be a powerful tool for streamlining workflows, automating processes, engaging customers, and much more.

Read this blog to uncover the advanced Slack features, best practices, and third-party tools like Thena that can transform Slack from a simple chat tool into an asset for your business.

How Slack for business adds value to organizations

Most businesses use Slack as their internal communication tool of choice and it’s easy to see why. 

Slack offers a unified space where entire teams can converse in real-time, which is much better than sending an email. A study by Slack found that 34% of marketers spend too much time in meetings and emails which hampers their productivity. Slack is a game-changer in this respect.

Furthermore, for remote employees who don't have the luxury of walking up to a colleague for a quick question, Slack proves invaluable. It bridges this physical gap, ensuring that everything from project discussions and HR announcements to those casual water-cooler chats can still take place.

And that's not all. Beyond its core communication features, Slack brings a whole host of other benefits to the table:

  • Integration Capabilities: Slack's ability to integrate with over 2,600 apps means teams can link tools of all types directly into the platform. From CRM systems like Salesforce to productivity tools like Trello and Google Drive, these integrations reduce the need to switch between apps, streamlining workflows and reducing context-switching.
  • Automated Workflows: Using Slack's built-in workflow builder or integrating with third-party tools, organizations can automate routine tasks. For example, teams can set up notifications for new sales leads, automate meeting reminders, or even gather employee feedback. These automated processes can save time by 28%.
  • Enhanced Search Functionality: Slack is essentially a database that allows users to find past discussions, shared files, or specific mentions quickly. This ensures that vital information is always at one's fingertips, reducing the time spent hunting for past data or insights.
  • File Sharing and Collaboration: With Slack, sharing files isn't just about sending an attachment. It supports in-chat previews, comments, and even direct editing for many file types when integrated with tools like Google Drive. This enriches the collaborative experience, allowing teams to discuss and iterate on documents without leaving the platform.
  • External Customer Channels: Slack Connect allows companies to create channels shared with external organizations. This means businesses can communicate with clients, vendors, or partners in the same seamless way they communicate internally.

But, despite all the perks, there are three areas where Slack falls short: visibility (sifting through the noise to find important information), productivity (supporting workflows for different use cases), and rich data insights (gathering valuable information from both internal and external interactions).

Here’s how you can address these challenges with Thena.

3 ways Thena extends Slack for business capabilities

1. Surfacing information that matters

If you use Slack, you know how easy it is for channels to get chaotic.

Picture this: a customer drops a quick question about a bill, but the query gets sandwiched between other messages. Next thing you know, you've got an upset customer. And if such oversights persist? You risk losing that customer altogether.

Thena helps you prevent missed employee and/or customer requests in Slack thanks to its intelligent AI capabilities. Thena automatically flags requests based on specific keywords and criteria, notifying relevant team members immediately.

Once flagged, the issue can either be escalated or directed to the most suitable team member through Slack Triage. Besides, you can categorize and scrutinize these requests. This means you always have a clear picture of your ticketing process from start to finish.

Thena also provides insights with real-time request overviews and sentiment analysis, offering a deeper understanding of both customer and employee feedback. In essence, it brings to the forefront the data that truly counts for your business.

2. Enhancing productivity to free up resources and time

Slack, if mismanaged, can hamper productivity by encouraging constant interruptions, and fragmenting focus with non-essential messages. Worse, the platform doesn’t really support complex operational sequences or cross-team coordination.

Without predefined workflows, tasks can become ad-hoc, leading to missed steps, overlooked responsibilities, or inefficient processes. Now, if you use Slack to support your customers, having cumbersome workflows or none at all can be detrimental.

Say a customer submits a question via an email ticketing system. Instead of responding immediately, the agent consults with colleagues on Slack for advice. After gathering feedback, the agent returns to the ticketing system to address the customer's inquiry. If the customer has further questions, the agent consults colleagues on Slack again before responding. This loop happens a lot, and it's all done manually.

Thena streamlines this process. With its bi-directional integrations with email ticketing systems such as Zendesk and HubSpot, it ensures a smooth workflow regardless of where the customer's query originates. This means you don’t waste time switching between tools, boosting your productivity and letting you focus on what matters.

In short, Thena takes your Slack usage to the next level, fully automating processes and mundane tasks that kill productivity.

3. Deriving critical insights from Slack conversations

Finally, we’ve got data and insights. Without data, your business is flying blind.

According to Forbes, tuning into data such as customer sentiment or tracking customer service metrics allows you to:

  • Understand why customers are drawn to your product and pinpoint when they might be feeling less satisfied.
  • Streamline processes to bolster customer success and spur business growth.

That said, extracting meaningful data from Slack can be a challenge, as it doesn't natively support advanced analytics, especially when it comes to analyzing customer or employee engagement.

Slack's Analytics Dashboard focuses on your organization's Slack usage and provides insights into:

  • Weekly/daily active members;
  • A number of messages sent;
  • A number of channels, and more.

To make Slack the ultimate tool for business, this data isn’t enough. With Thena, however, you can delve into the content and context of messages to gain a more holistic overview of your customers and your team.

With Thena, you can explore the depth and context of messages, enhancing your understanding of both customers and team dynamics. Thena not only allows sentiment analysis but also presents a thorough assessment of your customer service performance. This includes tracking metrics such as resolution and response times, gauging customer satisfaction, and monitoring SLA breaches, thereby highlighting potential areas of improvement.

In summary, Slack's native analytics provide a basic view of user activity. Meanwhile, Thena goes deeper, highlighting the subtle nuances of engagement and service quality. Through Thena's insights, businesses can identify bottlenecks and uncover hidden business opportunities. This depth of understanding allows teams to innovate in ways that just aren't possible with standard Slack data alone.

Sounds promising on paper? Here are our clients who are already optimizing their usage of Slack.

Real-world examples of Thena’s capabilities

Companies turning to Slack for operational efficiency and personalized customer management often sing praises of the results they've seen with Thena.

For example, WorkRamp faced challenges with a fragmented setup between Intercom and Slack. The lack of bi-directional integration led to confusion and dips in productivity since support agents had to juggle between platforms to address customer inquiries. This not only prolonged resolution times but also left the leadership in the dark about crucial support metrics.

However, with the adoption of Thena, WorkRamp successfully unified all customer inquiries onto a single platform. This allowed agents to prioritize and respond more swiftly. Consequently, agent productivity soared by 30%, and response times were slashed by 60%.

Furthermore, by integrating Slack and Intercom via Thena's connector, WorkRamp's team gained deeper insights into their support metrics. This enabled them to monitor, analyze, and consistently enhance their support efforts.

Read similar stories of businesses that successfully leveraged Slack for business with Thena as their secret weapon.

Conclusion: Grow your business with Thena

Is Slack good for business? We can all agree that it certainly is. But to derive maximum value from the tool, the native capabilities aren’t enough.

Making the most of Slack for business means workflows that are suited to support your business operations, visibility into key business functions, and rich insights that help you make better decisions now and in the future.

With Thena, you can scale your business with more clarity and less busywork. Feel confident in managing your customers on Slack with purpose-built workflows and meaningful data.

Acquire, Service & Grow customers in Slack
Share this blog :

Start managing your customers faster and easier from Slack.

Thank you! Your submission has been received!
Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.