It’s safe to say that the Customer Experience (CX) is now being discussed more than ever before.
One look at Google Trends and we can see just how much more of a spotlight is being directed on CX over the past few years.
I recently went down to the Adobe Summit in Las Vegas, which hosted many great conversations between industry leaders around CX through its keynote presentations, as well as the Adobe Think Tank session that took place during the event.
In this post, I will share 4 great quotes that stood out to me during the event that can help you become a better CX professional this year, and I will also provide my two cents on these insights.
“Frequently taking note of the little things is the key to our success.”
– Sir Richard Branson, Entrepreneur and Founder of the Virgin Group
This is a quote that I referenced recently as part of my recap of Adobe Summit 2018, but I feel it bears sharing again since it highlights how granular digital marketers and CX professionals should be in their efforts to truly become a CX leader. Simply put, the Customer Experience is anything and everything, big or small, that can impact your relationship with a brand. This could be an in-depth conversation with a call center agent, or something as small as a website click.
Sir Richard alludes to the need to not only focus on the big picture but also to better understand and optimize the small things that contribute to that big picture. In other words, every brand interaction counts, and so it can be important to sweat the small stuff when it comes to CX.
For CX professionals, one of the best sources of insights that can help you take note of the 'small stuff' that is making a big difference in your customers' experience is customer feedback. In particular, unstructured feedback where respondents have the ability to use their own words to describe their experience.
“A good design shows respect for your customer and you’re either respectful of their time or respectful of what it is that they desire, and so it makes it a very fundamental element to everything that you do.”
– Penny Wilson, Chief Marketing Officer at Hootsuite
Penny points to the importance of placing the customer first when trying to design a great experience.
When you sit down and try to figure out how to create a great experience, like when redesigning a website for example, it can be easy to fall in a trap where decisions are made primarily based on your brands’ needs, as opposed to what your customers need. When in fact, meeting your customers’ needs can ultimately help you reach your business objectives.
The need for a Voice of the Customer (VoC) program that measures your customers’ needs and gauges their experience across the customer journey can’t be understated. Using this customer feedback as part of your decision-making process when managing your customer experience helps ensure your efforts are customer-centric, which today is a key element to any successful CX program.
“If you want to be a good brand and have a value exchange with the customer… you’ve got to have the listening mechanisms that can catch up to the customer as well.”
- Kelly Soligon, GM of Digital Stores, Marketing at Microsoft
As an additional thought to the previous quote, I find this quote highlights the velocity and flexibility with which customers can share their thoughts, praises and concerns about their experience nowadays. Whether it’s through social media, with a call center agent or via a survey (to name a few examples), it’s crucial for brands today to have the tools needed to keep up with what their customers are saying via all their channels.
Putting a listening post to collect customer feedback across your customer journey is crucial; the ability to extract findings and act on them faster than your competitors is where the true value of customer feedback lies when you are trying to design a great experience.
In a recent post, I went into more detail about ‘listening posts’ and provided one example of how leveraging tailored dashboards has allowed our clients and their key stakeholders to have easy access to relevant data always at their disposal. By always having access to updated data and feedback from their customers, they can better evaluate the customer experience across their own customer journey.
“As a brand, I find that predicting what a customer wants means that I’m in control and I’m trying to define your customer journey, but when I anticipate, I’m trying to create as much flexibility for you to be in control of your customer journey.”
– Jeriad Zoghby, Global Personalization Lead & Southwest Agency Lead at Accenture Interactive
I like how Jeriad not only provides his thoughts on the goal of personalization but also gives a potential glimpse into where brands and customers may ultimately be headed.
Customers are gaining more and more power thanks in large part to the technological advancements that have allowed them to more easily gain access to their desired information. As such, brands may no longer dictate the flow across the customer journey as much as they used to, and control over the customer experience could increasingly shift over from the brands to the customers themselves. In this scenario, brands’ goals will be focused on anticipating their customers’ needs and putting in place the mechanisms and processes to meet these needs at a moment’s notice.
As we move forward into the era of the Customer Experience, quotes from industry leaders like the ones in this post can serve as inspiration to help you succeed in better meeting your customers' ever-changing needs and expectations and delivering a superior CX.
Click here to check out the full recording of the Adobe Think Tank session referenced in this post
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