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Predicting Your Customers’ Wants and Needs to Create an Exceptional Customer Experience (CX)

Shep Hyken interviews Wharton School professors Nicolaj Siggelkow and Christian Terwiesch. They discuss their new book, Connected Strategy, and how any company can use the concept to improve their customer experience.

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The Interview with Nicolaj Siggelkow & Christian Terwiesch:

  • Connected strategy is a concept that allows companies to connect to customers more holistically. By connecting to and anticipating customers’ needs on a deeper level, more value is added to every interaction and transaction that customer has with the company.
  • Customers may be nervous about giving you and your company data. In order for them to feel comfortable enough to share with you, you need to show them a clear value proposition. It is crucial that they feel their data is helping you provide a better experience for them, otherwise, they will feel exploited.
  • There is much friction caused by infrequent customer connections. Repeated connections create a positive feedback loop where you are able to add personalization and eliminate friction.
  • Not every customer will appreciate or desire a connected strategy. Predictive analytics can inform you how much connectivity each individual customer wants. It’s important to not create just one type of connected strategy; there need to be options to suit each type of customer.
  • Connected strategy can drive up efficiency and create a more convenient experience for everyone.
  • Parents are the ultimate example of a good company. Their customers are their children. Not only do they take care of their customers’ wants and needs, but they are also able to predict those needs ahead of time. They are also able to provide what is best for their customers, whether or not their customers are aware of what that is, because they have their customers’ long-term interests at heart. A good company should operate in much the same way.


“If you think about the relationship that you form with the customer, it’s all about personalization and customization.” – Christian Terwiesch

“Every business has to answer two questions: the what and the how. What are the needs of the customer and how do you fulfill those needs?” – Christian Terwiesch

“The power of a connected strategy is that you can do more with less.” – Christian Terwiesch

“Connected strategies are not just about technology or data. They’re about relieving your customers’ pain points by creating an information exchange.” – Nicolaj Siggelkow


Nicolaj Siggelkow is a Professor of Management and Christian Terwiesch is a Professor of Operations and Information Management at the Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania. They co-direct Penn’s Mack Institute for Innovation Management and cowrote Connected Strategy: Building Continuous Customer Relationships for Competitive Advantage.

Shep Hyken is a customer service and experience expert, New York Times bestselling author, award-winning keynote speaker, and your host of Amazing Business Radio.

This episode of Amazing Business Radio with Shep Hyken answers the following questions … and more:

  1. How can I create a better CX?
  2. What do my customers want?
  3. What is a connected strategy?
  4. How can I provide for my customers?
  5. How can I use data and technology to improve CX?


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