Customer Service Supplier and Product Update 1Q2013

1Q2013 Was a Good Quarter for Customer Service

May 30, 2013

First quarters in software are typically seasonally slow. Not so for customer service. For this quarter, customer growth was the highlight, and it drove good financial performance resulted. Product and company activity were also high. M&A was big news as Nuance acquired VirtuOz. And see why continues to earn our Customer Service Star quarter after quarter!


1Q2013 was a good quarter for customer service, the second good quarter in a row.

Customer growth was the quarter’s highlight. Clarabridge, Creative Virtual, eGain, IntelliResponse, Moxie, and, all had good customer growth quarters in acquisition, repeat business or both.

Financial performance reflected the good customer growth, especially for eGain and

Product activity was about the same as last quarter. Five of our suppliers introduced significant new products or major product versions.

Company activity was up. The biggest news was Nuance’s acquisition of VirtuOz, making a potentially major impact of the virtual agent space. earned a Customer Service Star for 1Q2013 with excellent and balanced performance across customer growth, financial performance, products, and company.

Voice of the Customer (VoC) applications monitor and analyze customer conversations on internal channels as well as on the social web. They’re critical customer service applications and they’re hot. Attensity and Clarabridge are VoC suppliers. IntelliResponse introduced a VoC app this quarter.

VOICES Theme Bubbles

 IntelliResponse VA VOICES Theme Bubbles

© 2013 IntelliResponse Systems, Inc.

1. This illustration shows the credit card themes over the last month — largest bubbles show the most important themes.


With this report, we begin our tenth year of quarterly updates on the suppliers and products in customer service. These updates focus on factors that are important in the evaluation, comparison, and selection of customer service products. More specifically, we examine these factors in our quarterly updates:

  • Customer acquisition and overall customer growth
  • Product activity
  • Company activity including mergers and acquisitions, partnerships and alliances, and hiring
  • Company financial performance

In our evaluations of quarterly performance, we want to see continuing customer growth, ongoing improvements in products, steady company viability, and good financial performance. We don’t want to change our evaluations based on a quarter’s news, but we do want to raise a red flag when that news deviates from a positive, multi-quarter trend, or to wave a green flag when that news is particularly good. When significant product and company events occur, we identify and highlight those that could have an impact on customer service products and technologies, suppliers, and the market landscape.

Customer Service Suppliers and Products

Here, in Table A, are the customer service suppliers and products that we currently cover:

Customer Service Suppliers and Products

Attensity Attensity Analyze
Attensity Respond
Voice of the Customer monitoring, analysis, interaction
Creative Virtual V-Person Virtual agent
eGain Service Case management, knowledge management, social monitoring, analysis, interaction
IntelliResponse Virtual Agent (VA) Virtual agent
KANA KANA Enterprise
KANA Experience Analytics
Knowledge, process management
Voice of the Customer monitoring, analysis, interaction
Moxie Spaces Knowledge management, agent and customer collaboration
Next IT ActiveAgent Virtual agent
Nuance/VirtuOz VirtuOz Intelligent Virtual Agent Virtual agent
Oracle RightNow Oracle RightNow CX Case, knowledge, process management; Voice of the Customer monitoring, analysis, interaction Service Cloud
Marketing Cloud (Radian6)
Case management, process management
Knowledge management
Social monitoring, analysis, interaction

© 2013 Patricia Seybold Group, Inc.

Table A. In this table, we list the customer service suppliers and their products that we cover in this report.


We made three changes to the list of suppliers and products this quarter.

Sadly, we dropped Aptean (formerly Consona CRM, formerly Kanisa) and its Knova knowledge management product. Aptean is the product of the August 7, 2012 merger of CDC Software (CDC) and Consona Corporation (Consona), two software suppliers that were formed and grew through acquisition and that have overlapping product lines. We had covered Consona, its Knova offering, and their various predecessors for more than nine years. Knova does not seem to be a very important offering to Aptean. There has been no activity on it and no communication about it since the merger. Its product, product marketing, and communications staff have been reduced and/or reassigned. A new version planned for “early” 2012 has not appeared.

We added Clarabridge, a Reston, VA-based supplier of Voice of the Customer software. We published our evaluation of Clarabridge Analyze, Clarabridge Collaborate, and Clarabridge Engage on March 28. It’s a strong offering from a solid company.

We also added Creative Virtual, one of the leading four suppliers of virtual agent software. (We already cover the other three—IntelliResponse, Next IT, and Nuance—in these Quarterly Customer Service Update Reports.) We published our evaluation of Creative Virtual V-Person on September 29, 2012. It’s an attractive, widely used offering...


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