Annette Franz

The Marketer’s Dilemma: Acquisition vs. Retention

Should acquisition vs. retention really be a dilemma? Can’t there just be a balance between the two? Must one outweigh the other? Companies have long been pouring disproportionate resources – human, time, effort, capital – into the top of the funnel...

CX Journey™ Musings: Culture Isn’t About Control

I recently read an article on Bloomberg Businessweek (about culture and how to sustain it – or whether it’s sustainable – in the wake of so many employees working from home) in which a Stanford researcher interviewed for the article stated: Culture is ...

UX Metrics: Who, What, When, Where, and Why?

I originally wrote today’s post for GetFeedback. It A modified version of it appeared on their site in late 2020. User experience and customer experience are cut from the same stone but have clear differences, not the least of which: who and what UX...

Using User Research to Design Better Products and Services

I originally wrote today’s post for GetFeedback. It appeared on their site in late 2020. User experience (UX) is part of the bigger customer experience (CX) ecosystem. User experience focuses on user interactions with a product, whereas customer exp...

Focus on the Experience, and the Numbers Will Come – ALWAYS

I originally wrote today’s post for StellaConnect. It appeared on their site on July 13, 2021. You’ve probably all heard – or read about – the Bain statistic from 2005 that goes like this: 80% of executives believe that they are delivering a supe...

5 Things Everyone Gets Wrong About Customer Service

I originally published today’s post for StellaConnect. It appeared on their site on May 25, 2021. Customer service is an important part of not only the customer experience but also the success of a business. Get it wrong and a lot of other pieces of...

The Key to a Great Customer Experience is Collaboration

I originally wrote today’s post for WixAnswers. It appeared on their blog on June 7, 2021. We know that the customer experience is important to the success of any organization. Customers are king, and they vote with their wallets – and with their fe...

From Sales-Centric to Customer-Centric: Three Critical Steps

A few months ago, I wrote a post on what it looks like when a company is sales-centric. I’ve seen this culture many times over the last year or so (and prior, for sure, but examples overwhelmingly landed on my desk this year). If you…

Evolving Your Customer Success Approach

I originally published today’s post on Forbes. It appeared on their site on August 23, 2021. The Customer Success profession was born in 1996, when Vantive, a CRM vendor, realized that their system had a failure rate so high that it drove customers ...

CX Journey™ Musings: Values Create Value

Culture is so important to your business. The right culture is even more important. If you ask me, the right culture is always one that is customer-centric. Putting the customer at the heart of the business is what makes the world, er, the business, go...

Change Management and the 20/60/20 Rule

I’ve written about change and change management several times over the years, especially last year. After all, customer experience management really is (all about) change management. Change is hard. Well, it can be. But it’s especially hard when not ev...

Visionary Companies: One Part Vision, Many Parts Alignment

A couple months ago, I wrote about the difference between consensus and alignment and why that’s important to know. Back then I wrote: In business and especially in our customer experience work, we seek alignment – from both executives and emplo...

7 Ways to Keep the Customer Top of Mind

“How do you keep the customer top of mind when everybody is working remotely right now?” This was the question that Ben Motteram and I tackled on one of our recent calls. The following is a transcript of the call. BM: Let’s start with how…

Building the Business Case: No Pain, No Gain

One of the most-commonly requested needs – often as a result of CEO/executive asks – is to build the business case for the business to focus on the customer experience. (It’s painful just to write that without thinking about this open letter to CEOs, e...

CX Journey™ Musings: Ride for the Brand

What is a brand? And what does it mean to ride for the brand? Having grown up on a farm, I know brands and branding well. In farm and ranch life, a brand is an identifier for your livestock, a symbol imprinted on an animal’s…

CX Journey™ Musings: Consensus or Alignment?

Consensus versus alignment: is there a difference? Does it matter? Where does it apply in your customer experience work? Back in 2015, I asked a similar question about buy-in and commitment – and, importantly, why knowing the difference matters. Ult...

Strengthening Relationships Through Customer Success

The history of the Customer Success profession dates back to 1996, when a CRM vendor, Vantive,  realized that their system had a high failure rate, an issue that certainly didn’t help their quest to have 100% of their customers willing to serve as...

Ideating the Future State Customer Experience

I’ve been know to say, “You can’t transform something you don’t understand.” You don’t want to change things that are working well or that create value for your customers. So know the current state and what to fix and what to maintain before designing ...

Customer Success: Building Value for Customers Faster Than They Can On Their Own

There are so many different customer experience roles these days that I wrote a post a few months ago called “Customer [Insert Term Here]: What Do They All Mean?” In the past, I’ve written a few times about the difference between customer experience an...

Empathy Maps Are Not Journey Maps – and Vice Versa

Back in 2019, I shared an excerpt from my book, Customer Understanding: Three Ways to Put the “Customer” in Customer Experience (and at the Heart of Your Business, that outlines the various types of maps that you may encounter or use in your work to…

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