Customer Experience Management, more commonly known as CXM, has become a bit of a buzz term within the marketing world. According to UK marketing publication Econsultancy’s Quarterly Digital Intelligence Briefing, a fifth of client-side survey respondents said that customer experience was the single most exciting opportunity for 2014, ahead of mobile (18%) and content marketing (15%).
According to Harley Manning of Forrester, CXM is how customers perceive their every interaction with your company. Basically, it is about ensuring that customers have a consistent, smooth, personable and pleasant experience with your business, no matter what the method or platform of interaction.
CXM involves a number of different considerations, but the major one is content. It is about ensuring content is delivered in the right way, at the right time, with the right message, to the right audience. Although CXM is widely looked at from a digital perspective, it is actually something that your entire marketing strategy needs to consider – from your website, to your social content, to your print collateral, right through to POS material in-store.
To understand this further, you need to put yourself into the shoes of the customer. Imagine you were looking for a venue to hold a birthday party. You first hear about one that you think sounds good after seeing a Google ad that came up when searching for ‘Funky venue + 21st birthday’. You then go through to their website and find that it has a dated design, and the content is written in a way that you feel is not targeted at you, but a much older audience. You then look on their social media channels and find they are using slang language. Finally, you call them and there is no answer, but a voice message with classical music in the background. The result is that you feel confused by what type of venue it really is, and annoyed that you have spent your time looking into something that doesn’t feel like it will be right for you at all, and you decide to book somewhere else.
This is an example of bad CXM. Even if the venue was perfect for a 21st birthday, this is not being reflected and managed properly through content and customer touch points, and the result is lost custom. Ultimately, CXM affects the bottom line – happy customers who are given a positive and consistent experience are more likely to continue a loyal relationship with your brand.
There are a number of tools out there designed to help with CXM from a digital perspective, but the key is to look at the messages and content you are putting out to your customers as a whole and make sure it is consistent all the way through. The most common gaps in the customer experience occur when largescale businesses use different agencies for different methods of communication. For example; one agency does their creative, another their website and another their PR. Because the content is not being generated by the same entity, this creates an inconsistency and this ultimately frustrates the customer. Although we are not precious at Blackfoot about being our clients’ sole agency, we do find that when we look after a brand in its entirety this ultimately benefits the client, as it ensures consistency of message and a smooth customer experience.
It is also important to keep in mind that personal interactions play a huge part in the customer experience – they are still the most valuable of any interaction you will have with them, so make sure that your front-line staff reflect this in all that they do, and you have a company ethos that is weaved through all online, telephone and personal touch points.
To finish, we will give you an example of a company that really has got CXM right and has truly seen the results with loyal customers; Apple. In every interaction they have with their customers, they are consistent. We all know and understand the Apple brand and whether its messages are being communicated via the company’s well-designed website or in-store via it’s friendly staff, they are consistent. Apple is also notoriously careful about social media, the messages it puts out and platforms it utilises, for what is likely to be this very reason. We think this quote identifies how well Apple has managed to ensure a smooth customer experience, to create a loyal following: “When Steve Jobs, the CEO of Apple introduced the iPhone at the annual Apple convention, the reaction of the audience was more akin to a religious meeting than a product launch.” (Smith, 2009). So CXM is not just a fad, it is something that could be the difference between a multi-billion dollar business and a mediocre one.
– Sarah Bakker, PR Manager
Looks like you're viewing this website on an outdated browser, this website does not support this browser. Consider updating your Internet Explorer or better yet, using a fancy modern browser like Firefox, or Chrome.