Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Brand Minus Customer Experience

Nothing !!!! Yes it is nothing. 

Everything that a customer feels, thinks, sees is all CUSTOMER EXPERIENCE (CX). 

M of McDonald represents fun, food, taste, ambiance, service excellence, smiling & helpful employees. M reminds us of all these. Therefore M is not a logo or McDonald is not a brand , but it is all about what M McDonald represents

Whenever next-time you think of designing your logo or planning a branding exercise, if the same is not commensurate with the experience your business is offering to the customer. It will not be a branding exercise. It will be a waste or It will be all negative experiences it can recall.

The 1st step is designing Customer Experience. Branding will follow from Customer Experience. 

Have you designed your CX & walked your Customer Journey to know the brand your entrepreneurial efforts are building  ? 

Monday, September 16, 2013

3 Steps to REJUVENATE Customer Experience

Ok , at our business we have decided to focus on customers and create Customer Experience (CX) that gives us competitive advantage. What next ?  

1) Discover (know the present CX your enterprise offers to your customers

- First know your Customer's Journey Maps 
- Know the touch points along the journey
- Walk the Journey Maps to know the present experience 
- Test check Net Promoter Scorecard (NPS) 
- Have customer experience audit by analyzing critical aspects impacting CX 
  (Leadership to Channel Partners, all which incl people, process, product, expectation,
culture, branding & marketing & systems)

2) Design (redesign the CX you would like to offer to to our customer to have un-duplicable competitive edge

- Define CX Statement 
- Redesign the experience along the journey through various touch points 
 ( CX Statement minus Discover Stage Status ) 
- Keep human rationality , emotional aspects , senses in mind while redesigning for need, ease & delight. 

3) Deploy (implement enterprise wide redesigned CX

- Appoint CCxO (Chief Customer Xperience Officer) 
- Realign all critical aspects impacting CX keeping above two steps in mind
- Launch new journey maps 
- Walk the new Journey (Incl CEO)

Repeat the process !!! Yes its an ongoing process. 

These are the steps. These are the steps to create wow & awe customer experience. These are the steps to create un-duplicable customer experience.  These are the steps to create sustainable competitive advantage. These are the steps to business survival in otherwise commoditised world. 

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

What is customer experience elasticity of demand of your offerings ?

This principle of economics is used for elasticity of demand for price. Time has come to use the same for better customer experience. 

PED definition is : 

Price elasticity of demand is a measure used in economics to show the responsiveness or elasticity of the quality demanded of a good or service to a change in its price.   

New age definition of importance is:  

Customer Experience elasticity of demand is a measure used in economics to show the responsiveness or elasticity of the quality demanded of a good or service to a change in its customer experience.   

Therefore before you ask for ROI of better customer experience initiatives answer following questions:

What is your advertising & marketing budget ? 

What is the cost of acquiring new customer ? 

What is the potential loss due to losing exiting customers ? 

What is the gain from repeat purchase from existing customers ? 

What is the gain from referral business from existing customers ? 

What is the gain from existing customers (+) WOM across channel ?

What is the loss from existing customers (-) WOM across channel ?

What is the potential market share loss due to competitor taking lead in offering better customer experience ? 

What is the elasticity of demand for better customer experience ? 

What is your better customer experience creation budget for existing customers ? 

What is the gain in to be known as customer experience champion company ? 

Answer these questions before you ask about ROI of customer experience initiatives in your organisation. 

Friday, September 6, 2013

You are EXPOSED !!!

Your company may be working in SILOs but customers see through the company as one entity or brand. This is the reason companies are at greater risk of being exposed. 
Many enterprises may think that only front-end people and front-end outlets are being exposed in front of Customers. 

Customer experiences your enterprise in following ways during their journey. 

Every-time they touch your enterprise you are exposed. 

Touch Points
Exposes (Indicative not conclusive list) 
Advertising / Sales Website 
Branding, Communication , Product/Service Conceiving Capability 
Word Of Mouth
How you have dealt with your previous & existing customers, customer policies posts sales , product & service qualities
Product/Service Display/Demo
Manufacturing , Engineering , Service Capability
Front end people
Training , HR Policies 
Back-end Processes
How your business process are designed & aligned to customer needs- like delivery, billing, packaging, queue management, admission process.
Outlet/Website for Transactions
Design & display capability , ease & convenience capability , safety policy, people policy
Company Policies
Return, exchange , store location policy
Product/Service Usage
Manufacturing , Engineering , Service Capability
After Sales Responsiveness
Customer Policy, Company Culture 

Whatever the enterprise does at the back-end invariably touches the customer.  

When Mr Zubin Mehta will perform in Kashmir on 7th Sep, in front of the audience, he is aware that they are in front of their audience and their preparation will be in tune with that. There is however no difference be it audience or customer but difference lies with symphony orchestra conductor and business enterprise conductors ie CXOs. 

One is aware and others are not aware that they are in-front of the customers and are exposed to them whatever /where-ever they do. 

Become aware that your enterprise is staging a show in front of your customers & prepare accordingly. Remember author duo - Pine & Gilmore - Work is a theater, every business a stage. 

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Why your customers MUST promote your brand ?

Why your previous & existing customers are NOT promoting your brand ? 

When previous & existing are customers are not promoting , their own loyalty is also at risk.

Its is a very serious issue. 

- may be they are not satisfied (not meeting basic need) 
- may be they are not happy (not exceeding expectations) 
- may be they think there is something better available 
- may be experience was not engaging 
- may be experience was not memorable 
- may be it was not emotionally touching 
- may be they considered price was more than value it delivered
- may be your promise was more than what you delivered 

Reasons could be any and many. Company can not afford to ignore these reasons. It is not that it saves your marketing cost but it is for the very purpose to know whether your enterprise is doing the right things in a right way. 

Before you get financial results at the end of the year , knowing what your customers are doing for you in the market is an indicator of financial results one can expect. 

Like political parties would like to know mood of the nation before election & take last minute corrective measures, entrepreneurs also must know & act on mood of the customers. When the mood is like the points stated above challenge for entrepreneurs is bigger. 

Make it a mission that every customer MUST recommend your offerings by becoming brand advocate.  There are few companies that enjoys this kind of reputation. 

Sunday, September 1, 2013

Extreme Customer Orientation !!

Yes Norwegian Insurance Company Gjensidige decide to become Extreme Customer Orientation company. 

Point is not HOW and WHY. Point is degree of customer focus companies have started to become to differentiate and create superior customer experience. 

Customer Experience (CE) as sustainable competitive advantage is now accepted by many companies. Leaders will always take a lead and grab first movers’ advantage. Followers will have no choice later and will be forced to focus on CE but that will be at the cost of lots of brand damage & first mover advantage. 

By two and half years into the process Gjensidige had been a dramatic rise in their position of Norwegian National Customer Satisfaction Barometer & won two of the biggest customer satisfaction awards for their industry. They have consistently beaten market expectations with their financial results & can prove that they provide their services more efficiently than their peers in Europe & US.   

Even CE is a new Marketing strategy. Without first focusing on customer experience or extreme customer focus, thinking & deciding about marketing campaign is a shallow strategy. 

- Do you map your customer journey ? 
- Do you conduct customer experience audit ? 
- Do you measure your customer experience ? 
- Do you have defined customer experience statement? 
- Do you have deliberate customer experience designed for all touch points? 
- Do you have someone in charge of end to end customer experience ? 
- Do you discuss customer issues in senior management meeting ? 

Extremely customer sensitive companies have started focusing on extreme customer orientation, have you stared focusing on basic customer experience ?