Customer Experience Research


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I’m on deadline for a new book and have been looking back at a variety of recent customer experience research studies as part of my writing.

As a result of that process, I realized that I haven’t posted many of the sources and findings that I rely on in my daily work as a consultant seeking to help leaders and frontline team members improve the lives of those they serve.

So, let’s fix that by looking at one source that I hope will be valuable to you.

I’ve was fortunate to be an early adopter of Salesforce’s customer success solutions. It’s not my nature to be the first in the water when it comes to technology, but I was eager to shift from a clunky and expensive CRM to the Salesforce cloud. Through the years, I’ve also been blessed to present on behalf of Salesforce.

The San Francisco based cloud provider not only leverages technology to enable customer success, but Salesforce does extensive research on trends in customer experience.

One of my recent favorite deep dives into customer wants, needs, and desires can be found in Salesforce Research’s State of the Connected Customer Second Edition. Surveying more than 6,700 consumers around the globe, Salesforce offers key insights on both the B2C and the B2Bcustomer. This is important because so much of the research done in CX focuses solely on the B2C.

Headlines from the Research

While I might throw out a few numbers from the Salesforce study I want to primarily talk about top-line findings. So here it goes…

Overall, we live at a time of unprecedented customer expectations (both for business customers and end consumers). 

We expect companies to use technology to personalize messaging and service delivery specifically to us, and customers expect brands to rapidly adopt technologies that customers perceive to be creating innovative value.

One final headline reveals that customers are looking at tradeoffs of personalization/privacy and calculating when it is worth their while to allow brands to gain access to their personal information.

Now for a couple of numbers, because the days of thinking digital solutions are required only for millennials and generation Z are over.

72% of traditionalists and baby boomers use mobile apps & 78% use text messaging to communicate with companies. 

Both business buyers and consumers are viewing technology innovations to be substantive and not merely hype. Artificial Intelligence, cloud computing, and smartphones are among the most revolutionary and significant innovations for business customers and consumers.

On average, 56% of consumers and 63% of business customers acknowledge that specific technologies are transforming their expectations.

So, what does all this mean to you? From my perspective, it means:

  • the customer experience of yesterday isn’t relevant today and will likely be less relevant tomorrow
  • we should all be benefiting from well-crafted global consumer research (the type that many of us could not afford to conduct on our own)
  • global trend data should serve as a working hypothesis for our business settings
  • like all good researchers, we should seek to disprove the null hypothesis – we should seek to prove that the trend research doesn’t apply to our business (and in the process, we will likely find that it has significant applicability)
  • we should rapidly adopt the best insights from this type of research using solutions, try things, and roll-out the things that work best approach

Over the next few weeks, I will intersperse my blog posts with other research sources and findings that I find valuable.

In the meantime, if you’d like to talk about translating research findings into actionable and loyalty-building experiences for your business, we would welcome the chance to explore that with you. Contact us here.

Republished with author's permission from original post.

Joseph Michelli, Ph.D.
Joseph Michelli, Ph.D., an organizational consultant and the chief experience officer of The Michelli Experience, authored The New Gold Standard: 5 Leadership Principles for Creating a Legendary Customer Experience Courtesy of The Ritz-Carlton Hotel Company and the best-selling The Starbucks Experience: 5 Principles for Turning Ordinary Into Extraordinary.


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