Below is part 1 of our 4-part series aimed at helping you kickstart your journey of creating a Customer Experience Excellence strategy for your business. To read part 2 of the series, click here
Companies spend a great deal of energy to acquire, serve and retain customers. Those with even the best plan to engage and deliver a good customer experience can still only achieve moderate results. Customer expectations and market demands are so competitive that they can’t just be good; they must strive for excellence. However, companies implementing a purposeful and well-defined plan to deliver excellence reap significant customer loyalty as a reward.
1. Customer Experience Excellence – part 1 of 4 (this post)
Customer Experience Excellence can mean different things for different companies. For example, one goal could be achieving a 100% customer satisfaction rating with the company’s products and services. If there is an issue, the company engages support through a channel that best aligns with the customer’s desire. With this goal in mind, customers should have a simple, seamless, and meaningful experience that solves their needs quickly. This experience delights the customer and ultimately increases their loyalty to the business.
Are goals like this realistic? Are companies yearning for too much, and at what cost and complexity? We believe this reality is achievable and beneficial for both the customer and the business.
Here is how you can start small and introduce more significant concepts and goals as your business evolves.
Know your customers
You can start defining your customer experience strategies by answering the following key questions.
Meeting customer expectations
- Do you deeply understand your customer’s demands and expectations of your business’s products and services?
- Have you invested the time to develop a defined journey map that illustrates each handshake, step, and dependency that makes up your customers’ experience and how they perceive it?
Anticipating customer needs
- Do you understand your customer’s behavioral patterns that offer your business the ability to serve them better when they have doubts?
- Are you aware of the gaps or oversights in how you serve your customers?
- Is your competition aware of your gaps, and are they better serving your customers?
Create a Plan
The questions above are designed as a meditation exercise in which you answer them and develop a way to prove them. The more angles you approach to answer those questions, the more prepared you will be to create a solid Customer Experience Excellence strategy.
Below is a high-level outline to help you start your journey of creating your Customer Experience Excellence strategy.
Step One: Create Customer Experience Strategies
Create your customer experience strategies based on the following key characteristics considered to be essential to achieving excellence:
- Exceed customer expectations
- Personalize the customer services experience
- Focus on first-response closure and timely follow-up
- Enable customer service engagement from anywhere and at any time
- Enable, empower and reward employees for achievement
- Automate but don’t replace the human experience (this one we cannot stress enough!)
Step Two: Develop a Customer Experience Journey
Develop a pragmatic approach to establishing a customer experience that supports your strategy and uses technology to support it.
- Understand the Customer Journey and map it out
- Identify and document the technology landscape in its current state
- Document the people and resources required to deliver your strategy
- Build a Technology Roadmap that will achieve success from the current state to the future state
Step Three: Deliver the Customer Experience Plan
Deliver on the promise of achieving excellence in your customer experience by having a sound plan.
- Build out a plan that is logical with realistic goals that naturally expand upon the success of each step taken
- Optimize processes and existing technology
- Implement new technology where appropriate
- Streamline and minimize complexity or remove the complexity entirely
- Measure and Empower the results. Incremental progress is better than no progress.
Are you thinking about improving the customer experience for your business? Do you have a Customer Experience Excellence strategy defined and the technology roadmap to get you there? If not, or if you have questions, let us help you. We can help you go from ideation to execution.
StrataNorth is an IT Advisory Consultancy. We help businesses of all sizes adopt the right technology to help them grow, work smarter and deliver the best customer experience. Our consultants have decades of experience in the industry. We are cost-competitive and fiercely independent in our analysis.
If you are ready to transform your business’s operational efficiency and are looking for experts to guide you, StrataNorth has Customer Success Management consultants with decades of experience. We can help you reach Operational Efficiency nirvana and give you a roadmap for success. Reach out for a no-cost, no-obligation chat with a Customer Success Management expert today.