Aligning customer experience ideals with available resources within your organization can be tough.
As consumers react to lifestyle changes with shifted priorities, the service strategies that appeal to them change as well. Tapping into these important changes as they occur and pivoting to please your clientele can keep your business on the right track in any market, but it’s easier said than done. Customer experience management centers on the practice of learning about your customers and accommodating their needs more directly.
Read on to learn more about customer experience management and its impact on company growth.
What Customer Experience Management Means
Customer experience management (CEM, CXM) is the name given to the practice of documenting and optimizing interactions between an organization and its customer base. This process works best when a company’s branding, strategic plans, and technological integrations align perfectly to support customers’ goals and expectations.
Consistently delivering on established service commitments helps emphasize company values, expressing these to customers regardless of touchpoint and timing.
Customer experience management helps spur growth in the following ways:
- Retaining Customers: Customers who are satisfied with their experience with a given organization are unlikely to turn to its competitors.
- Encouraging Advocacy: Beyond simply continuing to choose a given organization over others, customers who are happy with their experience with a company can become brand advocates over time, helping the company acquire warm leads and generate more sales.
- Strengthening Revenue Streams: A great customer experience can lead to more revenue contributed by individual customers as they choose the company they’re already satisfied with for related services and products.
Given that customer experience management is entirely centered on controlling and improving interactions between your business and its client base, determining the best ways to go about doing this matters a lot. We’ll discuss a few methods worth exploring to power this process below.
Guiding Customer Interactions
Every interaction a customer has with your organization colors their perspective on it, ultimately influencing the likelihood of them returning to do business with you again.
To encourage repeat business and brand loyalty, it’s imperative that you lead each interaction to a satisfying end every single time. This is achievable through strategies that can be split into two distinct camps: learning and optimizing.
Learning About Your Customers
Gleaning deeper insight into your customers’ needs and interests from every interaction requires the use of tracking and reporting tools alongside carefully constructed surveys.
Customer profiles are especially useful to this end as they highlight your target customers’ interests, purchasing patterns, service preferences, and more. Constructing accurate customer profiles also allows you to identify areas in which your customers differ from one another. Understanding the differences and similarities between your customers’ collective needs and interests allows you to more precisely modify your organization’s internal processes to fit them.
Expectations are at the core of the customer experience, but you cannot meet them without first knowing exactly what they are. Simply asking individuals what they expect from your company or how satisfied they are with the level of service you currently offer can go a long way towards demystifying expectations. However, asking alone is unlikely to yield a complete picture of your organization’s performance with the people you serve.
To drill deeper into your client base’s expectations, tools such as Aternity’s digital experience management platform contextualize customer data across your entire IT ecosystem, allowing for clear connections to be drawn between specific strategies and customer reactions.
Optimizing Service Processes
Once you have a clearer picture of your customers’ immediate needs and expectations, you can adjust your processes to better serve them.
Consistency is key across all industries when it comes to managing the customer experience. An organization can build rock-solid trust and loyalty among its customer base through steadfast consistency alone. Delivering a set standard of service that your customers can count on keeps them from jumping ship for superfluous reasons and can win over your competitors’ customers as well.
Consistency is a powerful force to be reckoned with when harnessed by a talented team, but it isn’t the only factor that can be optimized to better the overall customer experience.
Cut Down on Customer Effort
Reducing customer effort where it counts most can drastically enhance the customer experience, as well. Encouraging team members to focus specifically on resolutions – solving customers’ problems quickly and effectively – is a great way to lower overall customer effort expended during everyday interactions with your company. Introducing an element of personalization can also prove powerful.
Personalized assistance is one of the most widely recognized ways to enhance the customer experience, yet it is often misunderstood. When most team leaders envision personalized service, miraculous problem-solving moments and situations where top staff members did their absolute best for a customer spring to mind, but these instances are not easy to replicate in every customer interaction.
Although standout customer experiences involving exceptionally attentive staff members make for excellent examples of personalized service in action, one-off attempts at personalization are not enough to sway every customer, let alone the majority of them. If personalization hinges on perfect human intervention, it can be all too easy for select customers to slip through the cracks when team members temporarily drop the ball.
A data-driven approach addresses the issue of repeatability with personalized service by informing personnel on individual customers’ preferences, automating tailored outreach, and more. With consolidated customer information, their experiences can even be maintained across channels and representatives.
Customer experience management is crucial to any growing organization’s continued success. By paying close attention to your customers’ experiences with your business, you can gain a stronger foothold in any industry and mitigate market downturns with relative ease.