Customer experience –
Finding value in brand interactions
It is important to remember that Customer Experience is subjective. Also, it can be wildly different for each customer. This is what can make success difficult to accomplish.
For example, Customer A receives a product with fast delivery. However, the product has arrived in the wrong colour. Customer A calls customer service and they send a new product, as well as a discount code for the next purchase. This customer will leave a positive review. They value customer service, and they appreciate the speedy resolution.
Customer B has had the exact same experience. However, the do not have such a high value on customer service. They would much rather have had their item delivered right the first time. They are not satisfied with the overall experience.
In order to tackle customers with different values happy. It is recommended that businesses stick to a few guidelines. All interactions with the customer should be…
- Useful – They are valuable and each interaction counts
- Usable – The value of the interaction is obvious
- Enjoyable – The customer would be happy to have the interaction again.
It means that companies are making an effort throughout to whole process of a customers journey, rather that one or two aspects of it. This way, a customer will find it harder to fault the overall service. If nothing else, will at least improve any negative experiences the customer has. The result will be an all-round improvement in customer experience.
What about peak-end theory?
Not everyone agrees that a good performance all round is the best way. Some would argue that giving customer excellent service at the end leaves a lasting effect. Also, provides an overall good impression, making up for any service that was less than perfect earlier in the customer journey.
For example, a friendly checkout person who apologizes for a long queue. Thanks the customer as they leave may put the customer with a good overall impression – despite the waiting.
It’s all about the emotions
Although it is greatly beneficial to end on a good note, thinking that it is all that’s required for a good customer experience would be foolish.
However, the theory does show that being memorable does play a big part in how a customer remembers their experience. It is often gained by understanding their emotions.
Research has shown that customers would choose to be emotionally connected to a brand over feeling satisfied with what they get from them.
This may seem unrealistic, but it is because being emotionally connected will generally create higher levels of loyalty, as well as a higher chance of them recommending the brand.
Let’s not forget personalisation
Personalisation is another important part of CX tactics. It works together with emotional connections, as they impact each other.
Data is essential to optimise the CX strategy. For example, Amazon routinely go over their data to deliver a highly optimised, personalised experience. The same can be said for Netflix, who regularly recommend films and shows to their customers based on what they already seem to enjoy.
However, may companies seem to struggle to do this – and not only because of the limitations of technology. Many companies are too disorganised or lack the skill to properly analyze the data that the have.
It is, however, improving. Econsultancy’s Digital Trends Report found that since last year, the percentage of companies who believe data is the most exciting opportunity in 2018 has risen from 10% to 16%.
How can it be measured?
For many data-driven marketers, it will be a challenge to refrain from measuring the ROI of customer experience optimisations. The reason they should resist temptation is because it could turn into an effort to get value out of the customer, rather than providing them with the value.
Instead, there are many other ways to get useful insight into how happy your customers are, without effecting their overall experience. One of the most popular methods is to get a NPS (Net Promoter Score). This involves asking customers to rate how likely they would be to recommend the company to a friend on a scale of 1-10.
This data can then be assessed determine what percentage of customers are ‘promoters’, ‘passives’, or ‘detractors’, and to generate a company’s NPS, which is a good way to tell how positive your CX is.
Similarly, CES (Customer Effort Score) is also a common way to gather CX data. It i used to specifically assess the customer service provided, as opposed to the overall experience. The score ranges from very difficult to very easy. CES is typically used after a customer interacts with a service, such as emails or social media channels.
Customer Satisfaction Score (CSAT) is the third, and probably the most basic metric. It rates how satisfied a customer is. It is vague due to different interpretations of the work ‘Satisfied’.
It’s also been suggested that brands striving to improve CX should aim much higher than simply making customers feel satisfied.
It is also important to note that companies should aim much higher than making their customers simply feel satisfied.