As we enter 2022 the spotlight is on the value of customer care, which ultimately raises the importance of customer journeys and satisfaction metrics.
As such, business leaders must reconsider their traditional revenue-generating strategy and embrace diverse and innovative approaches to elevate their brand value through customer care if they want to remain at the edge of competition.
With the focus on customer care, there is also a renewed dialogue on whether B2B or B2C customer experience should be called the human experience. There is after all a human interaction at the other end, and experiences revolve around these interactions, even if it’s business-to-business. The dimension of customer experiences these days is changing very fast and becoming high tech. The digital transformation that would have taken 3 or 4 years has been expedited in the current situation.
As businesses re-design their CX strategies and embrace the multitude of changes, to focus on customer-centricity, the new approach for reframing customer delivery should be broad and resilient to gain a competitive advantage.
Top 10 CX Strategy Tips for 2022:
1. Break Away from the Survey/Score Paradigm
Today’s most successful data-driven companies have already left the traditional, score-based survey philosophy to identify customer experience (CX) as the cultural driver of change. It’s time to turn ideas to implementation. Brands that want to be advanced in the current competition have entrenched CX into their internal cultures, from C-level executives to frontline employees. Whilst the customer survey sources are an indicator of the customer experience delivered they are also highly misleading when the number of customers who take the survey is low. Correspondingly, the data is shortsighted, missing out
on the art of the possible.
However, this risk can be encountered by doing customer surveys consistently, perhaps monthly, and taking the feedback seriously, thus ensuring customer insights will be repetitively boosted. Some companies set up a Customer Satisfaction committee to audit the feedback findings, and this is also worthwhile to establish KPI metrics to measure success before shifting to further transformation.
Many leading companies understand it is essential to gather insights from various channels and touchpoints, such as customer data from multiple sources, mined by innovatory analytics and technologies, and then leverage these insights to steer every corner of the opportunity.
2. Start adopting the top-down planning
Modern organizations are now equipped with different processes and technical integrations from various technology partners that involve diverse stakeholders.
It is therefore pertinent to establish unique business culture elements, simplify complex technological frameworks, and continuously gather feedback from both internal and external environments. Most organisations utilise the critical advantages of the top-down approach to gain a strategic view of an innovation or a digital CX perspective. Oftentimes, it is hard to leverage the top-down approach when evaluating your CX landscape under enormous revenue pressures, or when operating in a complex environment that involves many stakeholders. Nevertheless, a top-down approach has traditionally culminated in delivering better CX success for brands.
3. Establishing connections and having a deeper empathy for their needs
According to the Customer Experience Live State of the Industry Report 2021, organizations need to create stronger connections with their customers, employees, partners and empathize with every stakeholder. Having a deeper understanding and sympathy for their needs enhances your customer experience. B2B CX has seen the transition from service to experience by harnessing the power of empathy building. Service was delivering what customers wanted, but experience has gone beyond that. It’s creating the wow factor, where you provide something that the customers do not expect.
4. True leaders must create a special forces CX team by:
Putting right people at right place
Dedicate to making CX a way of life, the DNA of your organisation
Double-loop learning and effective communication
Collective, cohesive approach
Authentic experience leadership cannot be achieved by completing the task behind the desk every day. The fundamental principles start from an autoreactive person shifting towards a customer-centric culture and engaging with other members. But specifically, you need to experience the process and the interactions. As a customer experience leader, when was the last time you:
Experienced your service?
Talked to your contact centre?
Scrolled down your website pages?
Experienced your mobile app?
Communicated with the customer to understand their perspectives?
Inquired from your frontline employees about the bottom-line experience?
By entrenching yourself in the experience process, experience leadership is strengthened.
5. Build relationships, don’t just focus on transactions
A good relationship has powerful implications for communities, even business communities where potential customers interact with a brand. CX leaders must lead with the ethos that customer experience is about building a relationship, not just aiming for commercial transactions.
Customer centricity is essential and must be entrenched in an organization’s knowledge base and organizational culture. True customer-centricity is the collective ability across entire departments to receive customer data and generate customer insights. They are either attitudinal insights or behavioural insights that each department can harness. Employee engagement is also another crucial factor for building customer centricity, where every department has diverse cognitive processing abilities to aggregate, transform, and act upon these customer insights.
For example, a marketing team will exploit customer insights in a different way than a customer service team, which sees another point of view or a different view of the same customer. To become a customer-centric organization, we must acknowledge these differences and help various roles infuse these customer insights in their daily operations.
6. Set fundamental rules to create engaged communities
To succeed in customer engagement management and for communities to be created, and nurtured, some ground rules must be set.
Categorize and organize the diverse range of contacts for individual customers
Actively nurture communities they belong to
Engage with various stakeholders, external and internal, continuously
Understand that all stakeholders are intimately related and influence their own and each other’s relationship
When executed well, these communities will help build relationships that help achieve excellence in CX.
7. Harnessing data for better customer experience
Disparate technology platforms are the main barrier for a company trying to build customer relations and achieve excellence in customer experience. This challenge can be overcome by working through the complexity of various channels where interactions occur, via digitally enabled consumer touchpoints. Business executives must find a sustainable competitive advantage by embracing technology and facilitating employees and diverse teams to receive data that provides a holistic view of the customer, thus nurturing high revenue customer relations. Structured data is a key to re-imagining business growth through AI and IA.
“For emerging technologies, AI and IA to re-imagine business processes, products, and CX, they must achieve deep penetration and implementation at scale. A fresh approach is required, and startups like Paytm and Stripe have showcased that amazing success stories can be crafted if these are deployed well.”
Anshul Srivastav, CTO, Proton Insurance
8. Define the key pillars of the CX maturity model data
Governance – Ensure your company data is sufficiently protected and that policies and procedures are in place for data privacy and security.
Strategy – the Customer Experience strategy must be clearly defined, including goals and objectives together with the definition of your CX vision and statement.
Culture – all these mechanisms need to be implanted through a strong culture. The internal stakeholder should know your expectations, what needs to be delivered, and how the maturity model moves from top to bottom.
Stage - Once you have defined your goals, you need to identify which step do you have to follow? Are you at the early phase to individually discipline? Are you at a maturity level, or are you at an advanced level?
Benchmark - There are many benchmarks available within the industry, and CX not be confined within a set of limitations. For example, a bank can easily compare itself with the hospitality industry.
Functions – your model should cover all divisions such as IT, finance, marketing, supply chain etc.
9. Big Data
Leading companies are transforming their communication channels and creating business value by designing agile and data-driven process flows, by leveraging specific data more accurately to attract and retain their elusive customers. The data can help generate a single, persistent view of your customer based on behaviour data, including transactional, demographic, psychographic, social group, purchasing behaviours, lifestyle, and other related data for CRM, loyalty schemes, and marketing automation.
10. Seamless Integration
Customer experience can be elevated by leveraging structured data, data mining and AI, thus fixing the information gaps by searching holistically through the customer’s interactions, interpretations, and influences. The holistic model embraces data capture from all touchpoints - the web, contact centre, physical location, mobile, and other customer touchpoints, which lead to a de-siloed view by generating actionable insights for employees, partners, and other stakeholders to analyse and leverage for decision making.