This week we feature an article by Abdul Babar who explains why your customer experience strategy must be a priority for any customer-facing organization. If we were to inquire as to the last time you had an exceptional experience as a customer it wouldn’t likely take you long to describe the lasting impression made upon […]
This week we feature an article by Abdul Babar who explains why your customer experience strategy must be a priority for any customer-facing organization.
If we were to inquire as to the last time you had an exceptional experience as a customer it wouldn’t likely take you long to describe the lasting impression made upon you by a brand and how pleased you were with the outcome. Same goes for a poor experience and how badly it turned you off from that company, brand or product.
A positive customer experience isn’t just about “feel good” experiences, it is about branding, market positioning, perception, and at the end of the day, your bottom line.
In today’s highly competitive landscape, customer experience should constitute a key area of operational priority for any customer-facing organization.
A well-planned customer experience strategy can have an impressive impact on your organization, increasing customer satisfaction, reducing churn, and ultimately boosting sales, growth and profitability.
Most of us are well-acquainted with the term “customer service”. But what does “customer experience” mean and how does it differ?
The customer experience can include a lot of elements, including any interaction that the customer has with your brand during their customer journey, from first learning you exist, all the way through onboarding and becoming a paying customer.
Your customer’s perception of your brand is shaped by their customer experience. Every stage of a customer’s interaction with your brand should be considered, from the discovery, purchase and service to follow up and advocacy. The quality of this experience will affect the conversations your customer has both on and offline. These conversations directly impact on the way that your brand is perceived.
How customer experience is different from user experience and customer service
The customer experience encompasses both the user experience and customer service. The term ‘customer service’ refers to any direct correspondence that your customers have with your organization.
For example, the way you respond to a customer who is experiencing an issue with your product or service would be summed up as their customer experience. The ‘user experience’ refers to any interactions that your website or app users have with that particular piece of software.
If you want to create a great customer experience, you first need to know who your customers are. You need to profile the customers that will use your product or service and understand their motivations, concerns and needs. There are a few ways that you can get a clear picture of your customer. You could speak to members of your customer service team to build a picture of your customers and their needs and concerns. You can also use analytics data to better understand your customer demographics, interests and behaviors.
Once you have this information, you can build your customer persona(s). You should build your customer personas into realistic characters.
Make a list of all the touchpoints that your customers may have with your brand. Each touchpoint is your opportunity to make an impression, so focus on communicating your USPs at each touchpoint. Then focus on solving problems that your customers may encounter at these various touch points. Even solving very small problems can have a big impact.
It is crucial that your employees are dedicated to creating a great customer experience. Make sure you hire people who are passionate about ensuring that every customer receives the best possible experience online.
A key component to understanding how your customers and prospective customers react to and perceive their experience with your brand is through reputation and brand monitoring. Services such as ReputationDesk can help brands track, monitor and react to feedback across the web and social media, allowing them to use real data to shape their customer experience strategy.
Listen to the feedback that your customers give you online and use it to influence your next move. Don’t be offended by negative feedback, use it to improve your customer experience.
Make sure that your brand has a memorable personality. A strong brand personality can dramatically improve your customer experience online and help you to build loyalty with your customers. Ask yourself, if your brand was a real person, what sort of person would they be? Build them a persona in the same way that you built your customer personas.
There are many other ways to improve your customer experience online but remember to start with the customer. There is no limit to the benefits that a strong customer experience strategy can give to your organization.
Abdul Babar is the Chief Marketing Officer of Reputation Desk, an all in one Reputation Management Platform founded by business owners to help other businesses look their best online and in their local areas.
For more articles from Shep Hyken and his guest contributors go to customerserviceblog.com.
Read Shep’s latest Forbes article: Ten Customer Experience (CX) Strategies To Amaze Your Customers
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