What is Customer Experience and why does it matter?
Customer Experience is a term used to describe the relationship a customer has with a business. It refers to the total of all experiences the customer has with the business, based on all interactions and thoughts about the business. Equally important, it is an all-encompassing term. It includes communications touch-points, communications, emotional experience, behavior, data management, customer data platforms and technology ecosystems, and business model design implications.
The influence of customer experience in business strategy
Not only is it important to business strategy but also as a change agent to process improvement. It comes down to the ability of organizations to maximize customer value and minimize operating costs by understanding what drives customer behaviors and decisions.
Peter Drucker most famously said, ‘It is the role of every business to create a customer.’ These days, with winning new customers being made so much more difficult because of the fact that 80% of buying cycles are done online and it’s difficult for buyers to ‘sell’ to customers as they once did, retaining customers – and delighting them – has become critical to business success.
Customer experience matters to businesses because:
- It defines their customer value and the level of trust in the relationship
- It is the primary way customers use to define the quality of a brand
- When all other considerations are the same between buying choices, customer experience makes the difference in buying decisions
- Generally, the leaders and workers of a business want to do a good job and be seen to deliver a good customer experience; it inspires them to do better and recognizes their efforts
All of these qualities go towards making Customer Experience an important ingredient of any business strategy.
The relationship between Customer Experience and Customer Data Science
In light of recent technology innovations like cloud computing and big data, it’s now possible to develop systems and methods to fully appreciate what matters to customers by harvesting data from back-office systems. In like manner, it’s also possible to determine how customers want to interact. This helps organizations to forge effective marketing programs based on facts underpinned by data.
Every brand that competes for business online has to stand-out. Increasingly, customers do business ON THEIR TERMS. They want highly personalized offers that fit their needs perfectly. They can afford to be choosy, given there are so many buying choices and practically every supplier can deliver their products to the door within a matter of days. The very best way for businesses to stand-out in the minds of their customers is to deliver an experience that causes them to want to come back – and tell others of their great experience. Together with digital transformation initiatives, customer experience management is a game changing topic that organizations choose to ignore at their peril.
NDMC Consulting is an expert consultancy business specializing in customer experience strategy, management and customer data platforms. We’ve been delivering best-in-class customer experiences since 2003.
Wikipedia definition of customer experience.
Gartner definition of customer experience.
Essential reading on customer experience and the influence of brand:
Ian Tomlin ebook Above and Beyond Brand: How To Make Your Brand Stand Out And Your Business Grow
Saatchi and Saatchi book about Lovemarks –