Howard Lax

Stickers, Switchers and Shoppers: Lessons from the Auto Insurance Industry

Some people display a propensity to be “stickers,” that is to “stick” with companies they use, while others are prone to be “shoppers” and others yet tend to be “switchers.” To the extent marketers understand this predisposition, they can use such insights in targeting...

Patching the Leaky Bucket: Satisfice, Remediate and Improve

It may be a trite and overused metaphor, but everyone knows what I am talking about: lost customers. Churn, defection, leakage – call it what you may, lost customers translate into lost value for a company. Lost customers represent lost profits and cash flow...

Beyond Closing the Loop: VoC/E

“Closing the loop” – the process of responding to customers who provide weak feedback scores or critical comments to address or resolve the customer’s issue – is a standard feature of Enterprise Feedback (EFM) platforms. This near real-time risk mitigation approach is one of...

The Science of CX

Customer Experience is still regarded by many as a soft-and-fluffy activity. There is a tendency to reduce it to simplistic statements: make customers happy; be nice; smile; apply the Golden Rule. Some managers merely glance at their NPS score, cheering when it moves north,...

Reflections on the Causes of Lousy Customer Experiences

These days, it’s hard to find a company that doesn’t say it competes on customer experience. At the same time, we know as both CX pros and consumers that many – some might say most – deliver mediocre experiences on a good day and...

Linking the Employee & Customer Experience: A Practical Guide to the Holy Grail

Pundits and CEOs have long debated the relative merits of whether to focus primarily on the Customer Experience (CX) or the Employee Experience (EX). Should the emphasis be on the direct experience of customers, who are the source of the revenues that fuel the...

CX and COVID-19: What’s the Same, What’s Changed and What’s To Do?

The pandemic has dramatically redefined how we live, work, play and interact with each other. Our daily routines, relationships of all stripes, simple indulgences, even our personal hygiene have been upended. No one really knows if this will turn out to be a seismic...

The Human Experience Trumps CX and EX in Times of Crisis

Companies are scrambling like mad trying to figure out what to do with their two most important assets – customers and employees – in the face of the twin health and economic crises brought on by the Covid-19 pandemic. Internal and external operations, processes,...

The HippocratiCX Oath

The Hippocratic medical oath of ethics and the most fundamental principle of CX are essentially the same: first do no harm. This defensive posture doesn’t sound nearly as sexy as postulating a code about healing the world or making certain that every customer everywhere is...

The CX Yo-Yo

It may not be a classic scenario of “one step forward, two steps back,” but it seems that for every advance and forward trend in the customer experience arena, there is a contrary counter trend moving in the opposite direction or an unintended adverse...

The Best CX Metric Deja Vu

Having seen a number of articles/heard a resurgence of opinions recently arguing for/against different CX metrics yet again, it’s time to clear my throat and assertively scream once more that the best CX metric is that which best explains the customer behaviors you are...

Emotional Bonds: The Secret Elixir in CX

Over the years I have measured what customers say and feel about iPhones/iOS and Samsung mobile devices/Android OS. Without fail, the Samsung/Droid combo wins the head-to-head comparison, earning stronger scores on performance and function from its users than iPhones receive from its customers. And,...

The CX Quid Pro Quo

Something for something. Customer relationships very much are premised on a quid pro quo between a company and its customers. That is, the customer/company relationship is an exchange of values, something for something. Customers want companies to deliver great products, services and experiences at a…

Forget-Me-Not Moments & Customer Yawns

The large majority of experiences we have with the large majority of companies across the large majority of touchpoints are, simply put, eminently forgettable (unless they go awry and leave us with a sour taste that lingers on the palette). Forgettable experiences aren’t inherently...

Capturing the Loyalty & Business of Financial (or any) Intermediaries

Helping consumers and businesses manage and plan their financial affairs, Financial Advisors (FAs) are the key intermediaries or channel for the promotion and distribution of a wide array of investment and insurance products and services. From life insurance, variable annuities, mutual funds and retirement...

The Purpose of Your Company is Nurturing Customer Relationships

Huh? What happened to maximizing shareholder value? “Nurturing” sounds pretty soft for the hard-tacks of the business world. The logic, however, is straight forward. Companies strive to create value. But what defines your firm’s value? And what is the source of that value? Investors...

What’s the Best CX Metric?

Some marketers display a near-religious devotion to Net Promoter Score (NPS) as THE measure of customer experience and loyalty, while others display an equally devout opposition and adopt an anything-but-NPS mantra. Both apostles and apostates of NPS do the field a disservice, as the...

CX is NOT a Panacea . . . but it’s [email protected]#n Important

POOF! That’s the sound of leading customer experience companies going belly-up or being acquired by companies with less-stellar CX credentials. We heard a massive sucking sound in the wake of the last financial crisis when Wachovia Bank and Washington Mutual – once gold standards for...

Is Your Company Emotionally Intelligent?

Emotional connections are at the heart of enduring or loyal customer relationships, as well as employee engagement. The difference between fleeting transactional customer interactions and experiences that leave a lasting impression – whether positive or negative – is whether the experience strikes an emotional...

You Have a Customer (& Employee) Bonding Problem: Fixing the Intangibles

Fix the product. Improve the process. Speed this up; slow this down; shorten that. We instinctively look to remedies in the performance of the products and services we deliver to boost our CX or loyalty scores. It is easy and logical to call out the...

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