Today’s interview is with Blake Morgan, a customer experience futurist, fellow Forbes contributor and the author of a new book: More Is More: How the Best Companies Go Farther and Work Harder to Create Knock-Your-Socks-Off Customer Experiences. She joins me today to talk about her new book and what we can do to create ‘knock your socks off’ customer experiences.
This interview follows on from my recent interview – Understanding consumer behaviour by going to the gemba – Interview with Michael Solomon – and is number 215 in the series of interviews with authors and business leaders that are doing great things, providing valuable insights, helping businesses innovate and delivering great service and experience to both their customers and their employees.
Here’s the highlights of my interview with Blake:
- Blake has just published a new book: More Is More: How the Best Companies Go Farther and Work Harder to Create Knock-Your-Socks-Off Customer Experiences.
- Customer experience is not just customer service.
- The book is built around a set of principles to help companies create outstanding customer experiences.
- The principles are described by the acronym D.O.M.O.R.E. which means:
- D is for Design something special. Not only does you product or offering need to be compelling, it also needs to be designed in a way that makes it unique and that people love.
- O is for Offer a Strong Employee Experience. The employee experience plays an essential part in the delivery of stand out customer experiences and companies need to design an employee experience that enables the customer experience that they want to deliver.
- M is for Modernize with Technology. Technology plays an important part in how companies engage with their customers but also how they work together and should be central to any customer experience strategy.
- O is for Obsess over the Customer. When it comes to being customer centric, companies need to be clear and have it built into their DNA and culture how they put customers at the heart of their decision-making. Take Amazon, for example, who always have a seat ‘free’ at their meetings to symbolise the customer. This also reminds them to consider the customer’s perspective in everything they do.
- R is for Reward Responsibility and Accountability. In any customer focused organisation, responsibility, accountability and ownership are key to solving customer problems and, ultimately, building better relationships with customers.
- E is for Embrace Disruption and Innovation. Every company can’t sit on their laurels and needs to key an eye on the ‘horizon’ and how they can continue to innovate and meet customers’ ever changing needs.
- Blake uses AirBnB as a great example of a company that illustrates the DOMORE framework where they are a design led business and make sure that all of their team have all experienced AirBnB as a customer.
- Blake cites another example, Sephora, which she says is ‘killing it’ when it comes to personalising experiences and engaging their customers, particularly on digital channels. They are also leading the field when it comes to utilising chatbot technology on messaging platforms like Kik, WhatsApp and Facebook Messenger.
- Blake also talks about the future organisation and ‘six rings of customer experience’, which are areas that every company needs to consider and master if they are to deliver a stand out customer experience.
- The rings are:
- The first ring is the seamless experience, which is at the heart of delivering the best ideal customer experiences today.
- The second ring is collaboration tool, and focuses on all of the tools that enables your business to deliver that seamless experience.
- The third ring is CRM, the knowledge source that holds all of your customer intelligence.
- The fourth ring is personalization, which allows companies to refine and deliver a differentiated and personalised experience for each and every customer.
- The fifth ring is channels, where companies need to master the variety of established and new channels that customers now want to use and engage with companies and use them to create a seamless experience.
- The sixth ring involves external stakeholders and includes customers, prospects, partners, influencers, and the general public. It’s no longer clear who we are serving as a company and organisations need to be aware of all of the stakeholders that they engage with.
- In Europe, customers are much more aware of data and privacy issues but this is a rising issue in the USA.
- Companies need to take a stand on these issues and do what is right for their customers. This, in of itself, will help them engage with and stand out in the minds of their customers.
- When it comes to choosing which channels to have in their mix, companies need to ‘make it harder on themselves to make it easier on the customer’.
- Customer service is marketing and companies should be diverting resources accordingly.
- Quote from an interview with Gary Vaynerchuk in 2013 re the difference in RoI when you divert resources from marketing into customer service: “People often talk about how people and service doesn’t ‘scale’, especially on social media. However, Gary doesn’t necessarily agree with that and is more focused on using money in your business where it will generate returns. For example: rather than spending $3 million on a Superbowl ad why not hire 60 people at $50k a year to deliver better service on Twitter or other social media channels or give this budget to an agency to deliver it for you.”
- Habits are really hard to kick and, therefore, not investing in customer service and concentrating more on marketing is a habit that companies need to ‘kick’.
- The biggest atrocity in any business is when anyone in the business doesn’t know what it is like to be a customer of that business. Therefore, Blake advocates that every business should start by getting to know what it is like to do business with your company and what it also means to serve customers in your company.
- If you, personally, wouldn’t enjoy contacting your contact centre or customer service team then you have a problem.
- Employing mystery shoppers is cheating and lazy.
- Your mystery shopper should be your CEO and if it is not then you have a problem.
- Wow service and experience for Blake is not complicated and it is all about listening. If a company shows that they listen and care then they will have won her over.
- Sign up for Blake’s newsletter here and check out her new book: More Is More: How the Best Companies Go Farther and Work Harder to Create Knock-Your-Socks-Off Customer Experiences.
About Blake (taken from her website bio)
Blake Morgan is a Customer Experience Futurist. Her first book is More Is More: How the Best Companies Go Farther and Work Harder to Create Knock-Your-Socks-Off Customer Experiences. She is the host of The Modern Customer Podcast and a weekly customer experience video series on YouTube. She’s been ranked as ICMI’s Top 50 Thought Leaders To Follow on Twitter In 2016, Clarabridge’s #1 Social Customer Service expert to follow and Customer Gauge’s top 20 customer experience experts in follow in 2017. She has worked with Intel, Verizon Wireless, and many more. She lives in the Bay Area with her husband, daughter and their two Yorkie rescues.
Check out Blake’s new book: More Is More: How the Best Companies Go Farther and Work Harder to Create Knock-Your-Socks-Off Customer Experiences, visit her website, connect with her on LinkedIn here and say Hi to her on Twitter @BlakeMichelleM.