Focusing on the experience being delivered to customers is critical to the sustained growth of any business, says Magnet+ managing director Patrick Masterson.
Firstly, let’s break down what exactly ‘CX’ is and why it’s important. CX stands for Customer Experience and relates to the relationship between a company and its customers.
Not to be confused with Customer Service – which is an element of Customer Experience – CX includes all of the interactions a customer will have with your company at all stages of the customer journey.
“A poor CX strategy – or a lack of one at all – can actually cost your business money and its reputation, which is why it’s critical to ensure you are taking the steps necessary to incorporate the strongest CX programme possible”
For example, whether it’s a telephone call to the customer service team or paying a bill online, every exchange between a customer and a business creates and builds the relationship.
Why is CX important?
The truth is, customers have the power, not the sellers, which means focusing on the experience being delivered to customers is critical to the sustained growth of any business. In a world that is rapidly evolving, one constant remains: the importance of customer experience. We live in an era where the customer’s voice has never been more influential, where their choices and preferences are at the heart of business success. A positive customer experience brings many benefits to a business as it promotes loyalty, helps retain customers, and encourages brand advocacy.
Let’s take the telecommunications industry as an example. With the increase in regional fibre access and network backbone capacity moving towards 400Gb and ultimately 800Gb, it’s difficult for operators to differentiate themselves from competitors. As we move beyond products and services, Customer Experience is the inevitable competitive strategy and a critical component for growth. The same can be said for most sectors and industries.
So, how do I incorporate CX into my business strategy?
Below are a series of steps I would recommend to all business leaders to either improve your current CX strategy or kickstart your new CX programme.
Lead from the front
If the leader of the business is not driving the CX programme it will be destined to fail from the beginning. Being truly customer centric will often require making difficult decisions and a fundamental change in culture – nice slogans on a wall won’t cut it. You have to get into the detail and core of the business and this has to be ultimately led by the CEO in order to drive and implement real change.
If you aren’t aware of the current level and quality of your customer experience programme, how can you possibly design or operationalise any of your CX initiatives? You have to have a baseline and you need the data to remove subjectivity – it is not about what YOU or your leadership team think is important – you have to validate it with your customers.
Internal & External Communication
Engage a proper CX training programme for your team. It’s important to remember that understanding the customer journey and identifying the moments of truth are ONLY the beginning. Your team has to be empowered to drive and lead change in your business.
Externally, make sure your customers know that you are taking the steps to improve your customer experience – tell them what you’re doing and ask for their feedback.
Effective Customer Experience management demands deliberate decision-making which in turn demands continuous monitoring and collection of data. Just like a marketing plan, P&L or organisational structure, every single customer experience program is different. Different programs demand different progress timelines, management structures, resources and metrics.
Implementing NPS and CSAT (Customer Satisfaction Score)
Net Promoter Score (NPS) is a performance metric used across all industries to measure customer experience. Essentially, it tells you how likely a customer is to recommend your company to a friend or colleague. CSAT, short for ‘customer satisfaction’, is a similar key performance indicator that tracks how satisfied customers are with your organisation’s products and/or services.
If you are using either of these metrics, my advice would be to always make your score public! Customers value honesty above everything so make sure if you have a Net Promoter Score or a CSAT Score that you make it public so you can hold your business accountable to always be better. The truth about NPS or CSAT is it’s not about the score, it’s about understanding the feedback from the survey results and continuously improving your CX experience based on that feedback. The NPS or CSAT score will look after itself.
An interesting finding we discovered from engaging in a consistent CX programme, was the impact our strategy was having on our customer’s businesses. By following the above steps, we found that our actions were having a “domino” style effect in that our CX strategy was encouraging our customers to replicate it in their own business.
This is a great example of how incorporating CX best practice not only positively impacts your own business, but also has the power to transform your customer’s business, creating loyal, lifelong customers.
At Magnet+, CX is at the core of what we do. We understand the value a strong CX strategy brings to our business, which is why we have followed the above steps while continuously engaging with our new and current customers to ensure their individual or business needs are being met.
A poor CX strategy – or a lack of one at all – can actually cost your business money and its reputation, which is why it’s critical to ensure you are taking the steps necessary to incorporate the strongest CX programme possible.