Customer experience (also known as CX) is the single greatest predictor of whether customers will return or defect to a competitor to do business.
What is customer experience?
It is how your customers perceive their interactions with your organisation and how well the interaction:
- helped them achieve their goals
- how much effort they had to invest in the interaction
- how much they enjoyed the interaction
Benefits of customer experience:
- It is source of both decreased costs and increased revenue, for instance by having leaner and more efficient processes that affect customers (both external and internal) and by increasing recurring revenue
- It correlates to loyalty
Customer experience and the business ecosystem:
Customer experience is not a program or a way to increase revenues, it is a lot more than that and it clearly reflects in every single functional department. Organisations need to create a customer experience that best aligns with the corporate vision the executive team has put envisage, the company’s target market, value proposition, unique strengths, financial objectives, and core values.
Customer Experience is “journey, not a project. It has a beginning but it doesn’t have an end”
The company’s corporate objectives and brand attributes are the foundation of any customer experience strategy.
If you want to embark in this journey, you need to start with a complete picture of your clients, who they are and what they want from you.
6 Steps to Implement a Customer Experience Program:
- internalise the fact that you need your customers more than they need you
- examine the reason why your company exists in the first place
- spend time learning what it feels like to be your customer
- talk to your customers
- talk to your frontline employees
- try mapping a customer experience ecosystem for one of your company’s most important customer journeys
5 Steps to do a Customer Experience Mapping:
- pick an important target customer and think of a problematic journey for that customer
- write down the series of actions that the customer takes as part of that problematic journey
- write down all the people and groups that your customer interacts with at each step
- draw a horizontal line across the middle, below the notes you’ve placed on it so far. This is the “line of visibility.” Everything you’re about to put below the line is completely invisible to your customer
- put green dots on each part of your ecosystem that is working well from the perspective of the person who was touching it. Tag and define parts of the ecosystem that are making people unhappy with yellow dots, and parts of the ecosystem that are making people very unhappy with red dots
Rolling out the Customer Experience program
- Measure customer experience
- Identify the drivers of customer experience quality
- Correlates customer experience quality with business results
- Shares findings across the enterprise
You cannot afford to ignore the measurement discipline unless you want your efforts to run out of gas and die.
It drives interest in your programs by demonstrating results, and keeps people on track by connecting them to hard data about the effectiveness of what they’re doing.
Read more: Harley Manning, Kerry Bodine. “Outside In: The Power of Putting Customers at the Center of Your Business“. Amazon Publishing.