Businesses today claim they are more concerned about the customer than ever before. Enormous amounts of corporate time and money are being poured into increasing customer service levels, tracking customer ‘satisfaction,’ and trying to profile current and future customer needs. There is much talk about becoming ‘customer centric,’ and a whole industry has grown up around ‘customer relationship management.’
And yet why is it that our experience as customers is often appallingly bad? How many times, for example, do we endure automated call centre systems when we just want to ask a simple question? Why aren’t there single queuing systems at most train stations? Why do so many restaurants treat you with disdain? The problem is, most businesses still don’t apply a serious, coherent approach to the overall experience they are giving customers. But therein lies the opportunity.
The key challenge in business is not to merely satisfy your customers but to genuinely delight them on a consistent and repeatable basis. In other words, to package and deliver an experience to each customer which they will have no hesitation in describing as “totally awesome”.
When customers are delighted:
• They become more loyal to your business and will go out of their way to recommend you to their friends and associates.
• They deepen their relationship with your firm – allowing you to sell them more products and services in the future.
• They come to know your brand, and it means more to them.
• You differentiate yourself from all your competitors simply and powerfully.
• You lower your marketing and product development costs – because loyal customers will tell you what they really want and need.
In essence, any organization’s immediate success and long-term viability depends entirely on the quality of the relationship formed with each individual customer. The more customers have a great experience in dealing with you, the more loyal they become and the more follow-on business they will do in the future. Developing, delivering and then evaluating the level of delight in each of your customer’s experiences is critical business building activities.
Never has the opportunity been greater to create loyal customers. In today’s business environment customers are more in control of how they think, feel and act than ever before. The norm has delightfully become the old Burger King tagline, ‘Have it your way’. The reality is, customers will continue to gain increased access to greater numbers of offerings through different mediums over the next decade. This increased access will only accelerate the customer’s influence and control over the offerings they wish to receive and accept. Customers will want offerings that not only fill their unique needs, desires and dreams but also delight them – quickly.
The 6 Laws of Customer Experience
Just like the three laws that govern all of physics, there are a set of fundamental truths about how customer experience operates. And here they are, the 6 laws of customer experience (CxP):
1) Every interaction creates a personal reaction.
2) People are instinctively self-centered.
3) Customer familiarity breeds alignment.
4) Unengaged employees don't create engaged customers.
5) Employees do what is measured, incented, and celebrated.
6) You can't fake it.
Jack Welch has said:
"Deal with the world as it is, not how you'd like it to be."
When it comes to customer experience, these 6 laws describe how it is. While some isolated situations may not follow these 6 laws, they accurately describe the dynamics of customer experience for large organizations. Anyone looking to improve customer experience must understand and comply with these underlying realities. And in case you're wondering,
Experience-Based Differentiation is 100% compliant!
THE BOTTOM LINE: WHEN IT COMES TO THE 6 LAWS OF
CUSTOMER EXPERIENCE, IGNORANCE IS NOT A VALID DEFENSE.
I'll take a closer look at each of these laws in later tomorrow blog post . For now, just get acquainted with them.
Your Partner and Companion