It’s been a few years that Customer Experience has taken centre stage. But beyond lip service what is the real action on the ground? In my mind CX is hijacked by all the MarTech companies when they aggressively push their tools to brands and service providers. I know this is a bit of a harsh comment and actually marketers are to be blamed for allowing this or probably encouraging this to happen, but that does seem to be the case if you look at the actual state of CX when you interact with customers.
A superlative Customer Experience first and foremost must be planned and thought through. This can happen only if multiple customer journey’s and the required marketing interventions are planned. Personalised, real time, automation and all the other jargon that tools use is effective only if the first piece in place. There are innumerable organisations who have gone ahead and invested in tools and believe that now some magic will happen. They are only quickly disillusioned. And I have heard this quote so often – “Oh, we bought a Ferrari, when we needed a Maruti.” “Blame yourself, my dear friend” is my answer. Customer Experience is no longer an illusion, according to a study done by a Qualtrics group company Temkin, the correlation between CX and repurchasing is very high (Pearson correlation= 0.82). There’s a 21-point difference in Net Promoter Score between consumers who’ve had a very good experience with a company and those who’ve had a very poor experience. Surely, that should count.
As we head towards new beginnings and fresh impetus in 2020, I was trying to reprise and remind myself about what are some of the classic tenets of customer experience? We do not always need to reinvent the wheel. Organisations and Brands have been built in past using some of these same principles, albeit intuitively. Let’s just revisit some of the gems:
“I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.” – Maya Angelou
“CXM = The art and science of coaxing lifetime loyalty from daily transactions.” – Steve Curtin
“Whatever you do, do it well. Do it so well that when people see you do it, they will want to come back and see you do it again, and they will want to bring others and show them how well you do what you do.” – Walt Disney
“Exceptional customer experiences are the only sustainable platform for competitive differentiation.” – Kerry Bodine
“We see our customers as invited guests to a party, and we are the hosts. It’s our job every day to make every important aspect of the customer experience a little bit better.” – Jeff Bezos
“Customer service shouldn’t just be a department; it should be the entire company.” – Tony Hsieh
“The customer’s perception is your reality.” – Kate Zabriskie
“Innovation needs to be part of your culture. Customers are transforming faster than we are, and if we don’t catch up, we’re in trouble.” – Ian Schafer
“Customers don’t expect you to be perfect. They do expect you to fix things when they go wrong.” – Donald Porter
“If you are not taking care of your customers, your competitor will.” – Bob Hooey
Each of these make an important point. Right from the importance of customer experience for business, to the interventions to customer expectations, to staying relevant, to being competitive, to driving customer engagement and loyalty. We are living in exciting times. May they spill over in 2020!