The Top Three Ways to Create an Excellent Customer Experience Strategy
Customer experience (or CX) is a buzz word that has taken over the industry in the last couple years. And heads up - it is here to stay. This is something your business NEEDS to focus on in 2020 and beyond. So let’s break it down. We know every business is focused on providing excellent customer service to their customers. Because most businesses are already pros at providing customer service, it’s easy to use the same theory as the basis for crafting your customer experience strategy. Customer experience is all about how you can take that service to the next level - and truly offer an extraordinary experience to your customers as they complete the purchase journey.
Let’s hear from the experts. Hubspot defines customer experience as, “the sum of every interaction a customer has with a business, both pre- and post-sale.” So, we conclude that customer experience strategy is defined as, “the actionable plans in place to deliver a positive, meaningful experience across those interactions.” (Check out Hubspot’s full article here.) Hubspot also notes that crafting your ideal strategy will require a long-term plan. To be done well, it needs to be given a lot of thought and patience, as well as collaboration among the entire company.
This applies directly to the channel, as well, and is something we are seeing suppliers start offering as an add-on. Let’s use an equipment purchase for a conference room as an example. First, the customer making the purchase wants an easy ordering experience, whether that is through an e-Commerce portal or over the phone. Since a customer is looking to spend their money with you, you don’t want to give them any reason to click away from the page or hang up based on a technical difficulty. All of this is part of the overall customer experience.
Now, let’s say that customer ended up purchasing conference room gear from your business. After a couple of months, the office has turned the beautifully organized system into a massive bundle of cords. When you sell gear to a customer, their experience doesn’t end there. You have to consider the touchpoints that will allow them to have a better experience after the purchase. Maybe you offer educational YouTube videos on what to do when “conference room crisis” strikes or offer a free virtual demo after purchase that focuses on usage and adoption. Regardless of the method, these are all ways to ensure your customer is having a great experience with the product you sold them.
Hopefully that helped put CX in perspective. Now, let’s dive in to our top three tips for creating a successful customer experience strategy.
- We love this article from Acquire that lays out numerous examples for a customer experience strategy. They recommend defining your ideal customer experience and working backward to achieve that. This can be a great approach because it will maximize creativity. First, it enables you to shoot for the stars and define what the dream scenario would look like. Then, you can work backward to figure out how you can actually implement it. Another reason is you can put on your “customer hat” and step directly into their shoes. Sometimes it can be hard to take that leap when you are on the business side of things, but those are the kind of insights that prove invaluable to businesses. Check out the full article here.
- Another great example was provided by Super Office. They recommend acting upon regular employee feedback to enhance your customer experience strategy. By taking this customer-centric view, you are in a constant cycle of improving the customer cycle. We think you can win in two ways here. First, by allowing your employees to provide real-time feedback, you empower them to become leaders in their role. If they can see change being implemented, they are going to care more about doing an extraordinary job helping your customers. Second, your customers’ experience will consistently be optimized based on feedback they provided. End result - the best of both worlds for employees and customers alike. Read the article here!
- Metrics, metrics, metrics. Sorry, we had to! There is no point in improving your customer experience strategy if you can’t measure the results of all your hard work. Pointillist has a great article that outlines the CX equation. Since building the ideal customer experience strategy will require investments, it is necessary to quantify the expected results. We know that benefits of customer experience include customer retention and revenue growth, but selling that value (especially to your boss!) is what counts. A strategic ROI plan has to be part of any successful CX strategy. Read the full story here.
We hope you found these tips helpful, and now are ready to delve into crafting the ideal customer experience for your customers.
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