5 aspects of a winning Customer Experience Management strategy

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Despite the growing global focus on creating better & more innovative experiences for customers, many companies are still unable to get the execution part right. There’s chaos, red tape, difference of opinion,yada, yada, yada – and all these things working in unison to ensure delighting customers remains a dream.

However, if you truly want to make customer experience management (CEM) your forte, and win over customers’ hearts, here are 5 things that you need to compulsorily include as part of your CEM strategy.

1. Investing in the right tech and infrastructure

Any Customer Experience Management strategy is only as good as the physical & technical infrastructure backing it up. Create a customer journey flow chart to first understand customer pain points, following which you need to devise solutions, and also map out the requirements/investments needed from your side to make them actionable.

The infrastructure should be such that tracking and analysing customer interactions is seamless across every single touchpoint and captures the right set of customer data effortlessly. Having a solid backdrop to your CEM strategy eliminates a lot of guesswork and gives you clarity when it comes to studying your buyer persona.

2. Taking an omni-channel approach

The subtle shift of power to the hands of the consumer in today’s market space has meant that the customer chooses how, when and where to interact with your company. Not just that, your customers have also come to expect a consistent and seamless experience irrespective of the nature of engagement.

simply put, your customer experience management strategy should be designed in a way that you are present across multiple channels and platforms – both online and offline. An omni-channel approach to CEM opens up many possibilities – for instance, the customer can shop on your mobile app, your website, at your store, or select a product online and collect it later at your store. This reduces a lot of effort from the customer’s side as they can now effortlessly engage with you, and experience the same quality of service across all the other channels.

3. Engaging on Social Media channels

While it can be quite a strenuous task listening to social media chatter and filtering out the most relevant noises, there’s no doubting that social media customer service/customer engagement is a disruption of its own kind. But many companies have the tendency to overlook this fact as the ROI from social media is difficult to quantify – the results are usually long-term.

That said, it is imperative for brands to not just be present on Facebook, Twitter, etc. for the sake of, but actually use it to drive customer engagement through concrete dialogue. Moreover, social media is the ideal stage to appeal to millennials, initiate more innovative experiences and showcase all the hype around your brand. It also serves as a resourceful means to redress customer complaints, increase brand awareness and visibility, which is even more important if you are looking to understand and appeal to online audiences.

4. Centralizing Customer Feedback Data

When your company actively listens to customers across multiple channels, there’s a large, constant influx of customer feedback data. This brings up a critical question: where do you store all this data? Do you segment this data to separate teams? Or is it all stored in one central location where it can be easily accessed and analysed by any team member?

Improving data accessibility should be a primary feature of your CEM strategy – all the customer data you collect should be stored centrally so that every single stakeholder – from top management down to the frontline staff can make sense of it on their own. Centralizing data helps in reducing friction that arises from silos, and it also encourages different departments to study the customer experience holistically, and not as separate parts.

5. Closing the loop on Customer Feedback

The ultimate goal of any CEM strategy is not just understanding customer perceptions – it’s about using the insight derived from it to optimize the customer journey. Customers leave feedback with the hope that you do something about it. But when they find out later that no action is being taken, they jump ship and choose to purchase from your competitors.

What if you could make customer feedback actionable? What if your business had the means to effectively track and analyze negative feedback in real-time and address complaints before it is too late? An effective Customer Experience Management strategy should place maximum focus on this aspect – prioritizing customer feedback, acting on it and following up with the customer later.

Companies need to understand that every single internal process/policy affects the customer, either directly or indirectly, and the only way to ensure long-term sustainability is by making the customer the central focus of your organization. And a well-structured Customer Experience Management program is what it takes to realize this goal and not let customer centricity remain as just-another idea or concept that fades away over time.

Ganesh Mukundan
Hiver
I'm a content marketer at Hiver. I've been writing about customer experience for the past 5 years. I'm passionate about narrating delightful customer stories, researching CX trends, and deep-diving into concepts such as VoC and Customer Journey Mapping.

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