Marketing that focuses on the product, on the much-celebrated ‘quality’, is dead. Today, selling means offering an experience; at the same time, this implies enhancing an experience, which is that of the customer himself. This is why designing your own Customer Experience Management strategy is no longer an alternative, but a necessity for every brand.
To be brief right from the introduction, Customer Experience, and its related planning and management, will be an absolute priority for any brand in the coming years. The reason for this is simple: focusing on the customer experience and their actions in the decision-making and purchasing process leads to a significant drop in the churn rate; this, by antithesis, implies higher conversions and greater profits.
Working in this direction, however, requires study, analysis and prompt action; let’s look at some things to do, some things not to do, and the results that can be achieved by working in a customer-centred manner.
Customer Experience Management: a holistic view
The set of actions required to track, measure, organize and implement customer interactions cannot be seen as a “guerrilla” tactic; CXM is a well-planned, reasoned and data-based system, measurable and perfectible even as it progresses.
It is a multi-channel approach, involving multiple points of contact with the customer’s lifecycle; this implies careful management in a ‘dynamic‘ sense, in constant motion, changing in ways and languages. It is no longer enough to adapt the product to the target: the entire experience must be redesigned, from awareness to retention. This is because, in the current state of the market (as far as brands that base their success on digital dynamics are concerned), it is consumers who choose not only the companies with which to interact, but also the means and the timing; consequently, being so prepared as to be able to ‘adapt’ to the customer’s state (emotional-active) is a major plus
The technological point of view certainly cannot be left at the back of the queue, In the last three years, for example, the percentage of CX processes entrusted to an AI in the various companies has risen from 30 to 50% of total processes.
It is not enough just to integrate the various channels; consistency must be maintained throughout the process, with the brand and with the strategy itself. Staying in line with a methodology is not easy, but it becomes absolutely necessary, especially if, in the process of personalizing the experience and interaction, there is a risk of deviating too much towards the customer. We must remember that, although the customer is at the centre of this process, we are always talking about a two-way relationship, which must remain so.
Customer Journey: planning and reading
By Customer Journey (CJ) we mean the emotional and interactive “journey” that leads the customer to the conclusion of a relationship with the brand during its client lifecycle (which does not correspond to the real one, but to a repeated cycle of relationship with the brand).
Having a graphical representation, diachronic or synchronic, of this path has several purposes; to visualize every single step, emotion and touchpoint, to know exactly when and how to intervene.
Obviously, there are different types and templates of CJMap, divided by targets, solutions, tools and analysis points; however, having an exhaustive picture in a single creative dashboard could be the best way to implement the holistic vision mentioned earlier.
The actions to be taken and included in the dashboard can be divided into 4 specific steps:
- Profiling: i.e. data study and planning of Buyer Personas, with their needs and peculiarities;
- Organization: the conceptual and graphic architecture of the map, in which each single moment must be developed according to the intersection with the others;
- Analysis: adapting the process to the business approach, we move on to the analysis of input data. In this way it will be easier to highlight strengths and weaknesses inherent in your purchase-journey;
- Action: which will be immediate, timely and targeted.
The point of view: the 4C rule
By shifting the marketing approach from the product and the value proposition to the customer and their experience, applying the 4Cs paradigm (from a study in the Research Journal of Economics) is always a clear and precise reference to guide your practices:
- Consumer: customer wants and needs first;
- Costs: costs that the customer will face in interacting with the product/service, both monetary and non-monetary;
- Convenience: the convenience, the advantage that the customer brings to the brand (in terms of acquisition and retention, and therefore loyalty);
- Communication: all interactions, verbal or otherwise, between brand and customer, during the lifecycle.
Double Copernican Revolution: from CX to BX
One of the characteristics of contemporary marketing (specifically digital marketing) is the speed of evolution: of processes, of dictates and of methods. This generates more and more opportunities for growth and development in the market of the professional figures required, as well as in the academic and training fields.
But the interesting aspect in this context obviously concerns the operational transformation of concepts. If in fact, as anticipated, the focus of marketing operations shifts from promoting the product to enhancing the customer experience, with a double leap and a second Copernican Revolution we see a switch of the focus from the marketing discourse to the entire brand; everything becomes an operation and a way of thinking proper to the company, which moves from CX to BX: Business of Experience.
According to the paradigm, in fact, there are several characteristics of a brand that is configured as BX:
- it combines the idea of objective with that of experience, viewing results holistically;
- it moves from the creation of needs to the satisfaction of demands;
- focuses the usefulness of products and services on the basis of customer needs, and not on fixed usability parameters;
- makes the customer experience unique and creates development within the company;
- anticipates consumers’ needs at the times and under the conditions that consumers require.
More than 85% of customers say they can easily pay more for a brand that offers a better CX; at the same time, 1 in 3 users will abandon a brand they were loyal to after just one negative CX. Finally, it should be remembered that while a satisfied customer communicates on average with 10 peers, a dissatisfied one reports to more than 15.
So if over the last two years more than 40% of companies have decided to increase their CX budget by more than 50%, there is certainly a reason. Investing in the customer experience, in the way the customer interacts with us, and slowly transforming into a BX, means projecting your company vision directly into the future of digital marketing.
- Corporate PR
- Marketing Dept. ProduceShop (https://mbkfincom.com)
- Digital 4 Biz
- Accenture Insights
- KPMG Report
- Qualtrics XM