Times have changed. A few years ago, I would utter the phrase “customer experience” and get the strangest looks from people. Today, there is much head nodding. People get what it means and why it’s important.
So I decided to have some fun today and let you know why I am so passionate about this subject, plus fill you in on a few really amazing events coming up. I hope you’ll join us.
Here, without further ado, are the reasons I believe customer experience is the key to happy customers, employees and people in general.
1. No more ruined days!
Our mission statement at 360Connext is summed up in this rallying cry. Poor customer experiences – those that frustrate, infuriate or plain irritate us – ruin our days as people. Waiting too long, getting the call transfer runaround, or fighting about bills that don’t make sense…these are the moments we complain about to our friends. Let’s have fewer of them! Great customer experiences can do that.
2. People are people.
Nobody wants to be on the receiving end of an angry tirade. Customer service reps and retail cashiers are no exceptions. If the customer experience stinks, the people who suffer are the ones customers face. Don’t let your people down. Create happy experiences for all.
3. We all want a cause.
Anyone can work for a faceless, soulless corporation. But the passionate among us want more. We want to believe in what we’re doing and believe in how we’re serving people. Creating a customer experience based on the end result of a cause leads to happier employees, happier customers and ultimately better ideas and humanity.
4. Knowledge is power.
It’s impossible to improve something you don’t know is broken. Focusing on the actual journey your customers take, not just the one part of the journey your department oversees, is the only way to really ensure a customer journey that is seamless. Customer experience advocates are all about understanding the actual journey to make it better for all.
5. Honesty is the best policy.
Customer-centric organizations understand that uncovering the truth can be painful. Instead of focusing on blame, they focus on incremental improvements. It’s a healthier outlook and instead of working in constant fear, employees are empowered to say “I know a way to make this better.”
6. Memories that count.
Few of us have ever told the story of a routine trip to the drug store over drinks. But we have told the painful episodes or unbelievably great times when, as customers, we felt like superstars. Those stories are the ones that matter. Let’s make a routine trip to the drug store something special.
7. Mindful design matters.
It’s easy to NOT proactively design an experience. It’s easy to produce a web site or ordering form or blog post without truly considering how it fits into your customer’s world. It’s easy but it isn’t right. Being mindful about what will actually work FOR YOUR CUSTOMER and not just what works is where great experience is delivered. And it’s amazing.
8. Micro is the new black.
I’m such a nut for microinteractions I’m starting to get converts! I will preach from the mountain top all day long about these small moments that matter. Producing great microinteractions is part art and science and all magic. Small moments that stick with you are the ones that leave you with a smile, a chuckle or better yet, goosebumps!
9. Customer service is part of something bigger.
It’s exciting to see customer service get a lot of attention. But often it’s thought of as reactive. Customer service happens when a customer has a problem. Customer experience is proactive. It’s design and evaluation and improvement and every single piece of the touchpoint puzzle. And when I think about that, I think it’s pretty amazing. (Want to know more about social customer service? Join me and others for WOMMA’s Social Customer Program.)
10. The customer experience community is filled with misfits, magicians and mathematicians.
Passion for this subject can be served in so many ways. The data analysts are just as important as the service designers, and there is room for so many of us in between. I love the way the community is evolving, and I’m awfully proud to be a part of it.
Tomorrow is the world’s first Customer Experience Day. Join us!