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Customer Experience Management is Failing

Wim Rampen | Feb 9, 2017 116 views 4 Comments

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Many enterprises are investing millions per year to get their digital transformation agenda’s going. Agenda’s that consist of digitizing processes, building self-service portals and improving the customer service experience through adding a plethora of digital channels like WhatsApp.

These programs have been mainly focussing on the cost-side of things. Their business cases are entirely based on cost-saving potential. Nothing wrong with that of course. I do believe though that the time has arrived to start focussing on the opportunity-side, the growth, revenue, and customer loyalty-side if you will, of digital transformation.

The has arrived to start focussing on the opportunity-side, the growth, revenue, and customer loyalty-side, of digital transformation 

I recently experienced an aha-moment when it comes to how these opportunities are already sitting under our noses:

Last week I was having this workshop with one of our clients to discuss a new project that they wanted our help with. CX Company has been working with this client for several years, and successfully reduced many live contact center contacts with the help of our chatbot/virtual assistant technology platform. But we did not discuss before how our technology could enable online sales and increase conversions, how it could make choosing easier, more seamless and the customer experience more personal and warm. I’m glad we now did.



My “Aha-moment” came when we were discussing numbers. The numbers were website visits and top-tasks their customers were trying to get done when there. What struck me was that these numbers were at least 10x larger compared to contact center volumes.

We can only come to the conclusion that there is this (big-data) swamp of interactions that we know very, very little about 

We know, in this and other cases, the Virtual Assistant (VA) handles around 30% of total service queries in an automated way. I hadn’t realized before though that in the time we reduced interactions with the contact center, digital interactions exploded at this scale.

If we count how many of those digital interactions are dealt with by the VA, add how many result in actions by customers in self-service portals and add to that how many interactions are sales-transactions, we can only come to the conclusion that there is this (big-data) swamp of interactions that we know very, very little about. And if we know very little about them, we are also not influencing actively how value is created with them, for our Client nor their customers.

If we are not working on 80% to 90% of the interactions people have with our company than we should conclude that Customer Experience transformation is failing 

If we allow us to let those numbers sink in again, we could argue that Customer experience transformation is failing. If it is our job to help customers get their jobs done better, if it is our job to help people meet their desired outcomes when getting the job done AND we are not including 80%-90% of the interactions people have with our company, than we are not doing a good job, are we?

I hear you saying: “But people are satisfied with the website, no? And we are collecting data to retarget them with advertising, plus we use (advanced) analytics and a/b-testing to get more conversions from incoming traffic. So we are doing a lot already, no?”

Customer experience management is not about tinkering with nudges to “help them convert”. It is about helping people swiftly and easy fulfill the journey of getting their job done. 

It is not (good) enough in my opinion. Customer experience management is not about satisfaction at touch-points, nor about tinkering with “nudges” to get them to convert in your funnel.

Customer experience management is about helping people swiftly and easy fulfill the journey of getting the customer’s job done. And if we do not know why an interaction took place, what the customer’s intention was to get done and whether it was successful, we are failing at our job.

We are missing out on 80% to 90% of the opportunities, right in front of our noses, to help the customer do what she intended to do, better. 

I believe we are missing out on what is potentially the greatest opportunity for marketers and customer experience professionals since the computer entered the office. We are missing out on 80% to 90% of the opportunities, right in front of our noses, to help the customer do what she intended to do, better. And we are missing out on the opportunity to co-create value with these interactions for ourselves too.

So, what are you doing to actively engage with your customers on your website to understand what it is they are trying to get done at each and every of these interactions? What are you doing to turn that insight into value for them, and yourself?

I can think of a couple of interesting ways. Ways that CX Company’s Customer Experience Automation platform, DigitalCX, can enable. I’ll discuss them here in a future post.

What a great journey I’m on 🙂

Want to find our more? Get in touch!

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4 Responses to Customer Experience Management is Failing

  1. Thomas Wieberneit February 9, 2017 at 12:59 am (226 comments) #

    Hi Wim, is CEM failing or just not (yet) sophisticated enough?

    Cheers,
    Thomas
    @twieberneit

  2. Michael Lowenstein February 9, 2017 at 6:58 am (1285 comments) #

    It feels like much of the CX effectiveness assessment, and rumination, is ‘inside-out’ and process-driven. To optimize customer value, especially if you believe that there is real potential ” to help the customer do what she intended to do, better. And we are missing out on the opportunity to co-create value with these interactions for ourselves too.”, then shouldn’t you be getting an ‘outside-in’ research and experiment feedback perspective from customers? CEM isn’t necessarily failing, or even impaired, as much as it is incomplete.

  3. Andrew Rudin February 9, 2017 at 10:31 am (207 comments) #

    “Customer experience management is about helping people swiftly and easy fulfill the journey of getting the customer’s job done.” – I take that to mean that ‘swiftly and easily’ are the dual goals for customer experience outcomes. I have trouble buying into that because it’s so reductive. And there are near-infinite exceptions. When it’s done perfunctorily, or with robotic coldness, a retailer or business who completes my buying transaction swiftly and easily doesn’t necessarily provide a positive customer experience. A vending machine does that. Swiftly and easily? – you bet! But I’ve rarely – if ever – considered getting a small cellophane bag of pretzels from behind a theft-proof steel door good customer experience management. There’s more to positive CX.

    CX professionals need to think broadly and completely about what customers want and expect from an ‘experience.’ That means breaking CX out of its marketing-buzzword shell, and defining it in operational terms. ‘Swiftly and easily’ might work as an CX standard at a convenience store like Wawa. But it would likely fail at a luxury goods retailer where a relaxed, slow atmosphere is one reason customers likely shop there to begin with.

  4. Peter Strohkorb February 9, 2017 at 11:31 am (24 comments) #

    IMHO the problem is that the buzzword is “Digital Transformation”. The focus is on the “digital”, rather than “customer service transformation” or “customer experience transformation”. Yet again our executives are focused on the tools and not on the outcomes.
    For years now have I preached that we forget about the People dimension at our peril. I even said so in my book on Amazon.
    Contact me if you want to know more about how to get this right and achieve real business results that matter.

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