The Customer Experience (CX) Management - in other words, the measurement and control of customer experiences - becomes a decisive factor in a company's success in times of increasingly competitive market conditions. Traditional measurement methods for customer loyalty and customer behavior, such as the Net Promoter Score or the conversion model, fall far short simply because they neither do all the relevant touchpoints nor sufficiently consider the customer's perspective and expectations. That’s why the IT service provider adesso recommends a more comprehensive approach that takes into account the following parameters:
- Expectations: What are the reasons, attitudes and questions of the customer to get in touch with the company?
- Touchpoints: What points of contact does the customer have with the company?
- Experiences: What positive or negative experiences does the customer have at the point of contact?
- Relevance: What significance does a point of contact have in the respective situation?
- Engagement potential: Would the customer buy again from the company and recommend offers?
- Ownership: Are the contact points controlled by the company itself or by third parties?
In a six-step process, these parameters can then be measured, and their results used to optimize the customer experience:
1. Develop an objective: In a customer relationship model, the target groups and their most important networking patterns with the company are analyzed. A customer value promise describes the added value that the company promises its customers, creating a conceptional objective the measuring methods can then use for orientation.
2. Taking the customer's perspective: In field studies, customers are guided through the customer journey, so that companies can take the perspective of customers and develop an understanding of their questions, motives and expectations. In the form of stories, the experiences are then recorded at the contact points.
3. Focus on essentials: Together with customer representatives, all contact points along the customer journey are identified and evaluated. For this purpose, customer rank on a scale from zero to ten how important a point of contact is to them, whether they would buy again at this point of contact, and whether they would recommend it to others. Thus, it can be ruled out that the company invests in services that are irrelevant to the customer.
4. Structure experiences: The experiences recorded in the stories are broken down for the individual contact points on a multi-level scale from "enthusiastic" to "unfulfilled". Using a so-called ‘Customer Experience Map’, this scale provides a clear picture of how the actual events deviate from the desired experiences and makes the need for optimization in practice evident.
5. Create a decision architecture: All results are summarized in a Touchpoint Performance Matrix that depicts which touchpoints have the highest relevance, how the experiences currently look like there, and whether the company can currently control these touchpoints themselves. This creates a decision-making architecture that exposes prioritized fields of action.
6. Verify effectiveness: Customer behavior and expectations are subject to constant change. New solutions that have been implemented, based on the Touchpoint Performance Matrix, have therefore to be repeatedly checked for effectiveness in iterative cycles. It is crucial that the customers are included in the feedback process.
Successful CX management requires to imagine being in the shoes of the customer to be able to create deals that are relevant from the customer's perspective.
By Daniela La Marca