A Customer Experience Strategy is a plan of action designed by an organizational management team to achieve a customer experience that goes above and beyond that of its competitive rivals.
The formation of a strategy is a necessary element of creating a stand-out customer experience. In the first place, leaders need to agree WHO their most profitable customers are and WHAT MAKES A CUSTOMER in terms of the characteristics that cause them to become a candidate to purchase a product or service. Of late, the focus of the customer experience discipline has been digital marketing. That said, digital marketing speaks more of the communications channel than anything else.
A successful customer experience strategy should include, but not limited to:
- Mission and objectives
- Jobs-To-Be-Done analysis
- Your Blue-Ocean strategy
- Competitive insight
- Consumer research
- Marketplace data
- A series of agreed actions
- Project delivery roadmap
- Assessment of risks and challenges
- RACI Matrix to determine who does what and who is responsible
According to Customer Strategist Journal, there are six key areas of the digital customer experience:
1. Reachability: What channels is your business active on? How are these channels being used?
2. Service convenience: Can customers self-serve? What types of channels are being used to provide service?
3. Purchase convenience: Is there friction in the purchase process?
4. Personalization: How well does your business meet/cater to individual customer needs?
5. Simplicity and ease of use: Are service/informational channels optimized for mobile? Is the customer journey bogged down or straightforward?
6. Channel flexibility: Is context about the customer being used and applied across all channels? Is there a history of behavior, transactions, and conversations across touch points available for each customer?
Hyper-Competitive Markets Drive Demands for a Stand-out Customer Experience
Coupled with the need to appreciate the channels customers use and the reasons why they might want to engage with a supplier, practitioners of customer experience are interested in understanding how to design a customer behavior that leads customer to WANT to buy a product.
In the light of always online markets and a highly competitive digital marketplace, businesses today have to be outstanding in customer experience to stand-out.
Customer Experience Explained
Customer experience is a term commonly used to describe the relationship a customer has with a business.
It refers to the total of all experiences the customer has with the business, based on all interactions and thoughts about the business. Equally important, it is an all-encompassing term. It includes communications touch-points, communications, emotional experience, behavior, data management, customer data platforms and technology ecosystems, and business model design implications.
Not only is it important to business strategy but also as a change agent to process improvement. It comes down to the ability of organizations to maximize customer value and minimize operating costs by understanding what drives customer behaviors and decisions.
In light of recent technology innovations like cloud computing and big data, it’s now possible to develop systems and methods to fully appreciate what matters to customers by harvesting data from back-office systems. In like manner, it’s also possible to determine how customers want to interact. This helps organizations to forge effective marketing programs based on facts underpinned by data.
Together with digital transformation initiatives, customer experience management is a game changing topic that organizations choose to ignore at their peril.