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Whether consumers articulate it or not, or whether it gets measured or not, emotions have become core to experience response and future consumer decisions.  In a recent article, Robert Passikoff, CEO of Brand Keys, presented statistics which demonstrate the extent to which consumer response to experiences, and the resultant impact on decision processes, has become emotion-dominant. Based on results drawn from over 100 categories and nearly a thousand brands, Brand Keys has determined that the average category decision process is now 80 percent emotional and 20 percent rational.  This has significant implications for sales, service, marketing, ...
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No company is perfect. It is inevitable that employees will make mistakes. The impact on brand image is not necessarily related to WHAT happens as much as HOW employees handle a problem. I recently encountered a situation, which in the end provided great lessons that are worth sharing. While the issue occurred at a restaurant, the CX learnings apply to all companies, regardless of size and industry.  To make a long story short, I was eating dinner at a local place, Bond Tavern, which is known for its great burgers and milkshakes. While I was enjoying my meal, the waiter accidentally spilled food that landed on my lap and stained my jacket. I did not outwardly ...
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Starbucks has announced that it will  close more than 8,000 company-owned stores  on May 29 to present racial bias education to its employees. This dramatic move is a response to last week’s incident at a Philadelphia Starbucks, where two black men were arrested as they waited for a third man to arrive for a meeting. The response by Starbucks CEO Kevin Johnson has been impressive. I view it as a good example of a company taking responsibility for its wrongful actions and standing behind its stated values. Values help a company connect emotionally with its customers. But when a company says it believes in one thing and then does something completely opposite, ...
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I hate to be the bearer of bad news, but as Steve Walker says in this bonus 10 Traits Recap podcast episode , “it would take a pretty special brand of unicorn.” At the recent Qualtrics X4 event, we took a group of about 40 B2B CX professionals through a self-evaluation exercise. And guess what? Not a single unicorn in the bunch!  What we did find was a pretty wide range of evaluations on several of the traits. A sneak peek at the highlights: CX Leaders scored themselves consistently high on being a Catalyst for Change . This isn’t surprising because people are often hand-picked for CX roles because they are high performers who have demonstrated ...
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Many organizations have taken the first steps toward interweaving the concepts and principles of customer experience (CX) as a management discipline into their respective companies. With the support of company executives, employees, and credentialed CX professionals, foundations have been built around CX strategy, experience design, employee engagement, metrics, and voice of the customer practices. We've seen some fabulous, pioneering work in customer feedback, process improvements, cross-disciplinary teaming, journey mapping, and digital tools, for example. That’s work to be proud of!  Now, in the spirit of innovation, if you have some of those basics ...
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A lot of business professionals talk about customer loyalty. However, if I’m totally honest, they often don’t know what they are talking about. Or they do know what they are talking about, but what they are talking about is not customer loyalty! Many of the organizations I have worked with say that customer loyalty means, “the customer buys everything from us.” But buying everything from you does not make them loyal. Great customers? Yes. Loyal customers? Not so fast. Customer loyalty is not the same thing as customer sales volume. Sales volume follows loyalty, but it does not form loyalty. In other words, sales volume is an effect, a behavior of customer ...
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My passion around Customer Experience (CX) started when I received a package in the mail on a random afternoon. I was not anticipating a large box to be delivered, especially with a label that read “To Stacy, From Stacy.” Upon opening it, I quickly learned that the owner of Stacy’s Pita Chips sent a variety of FREE bags to hundreds of Stacy’s throughout the United States who spell their name like she does. To no surprise, this experience left a positive impression on me. I continue buying Stacy’s Chips, and I tell everyone I know about this story, which I have to believe generates incremental brand awareness and product orders. This experience serves as an ...
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One of the things I like most about my role as a Customer Experience Strategist is visiting a client’s contact center to gain a grass roots understanding of both the employee experience and the experience of the customers they support.  Learning both perspectives is truly eye-opening each and every time, and generally results in pages and pages of notes, observations and recommendations to consider, including a few “low-hanging fruit” opportunities for immediate action. At a recent contact center visit, I was able to sit with an exceptional customer service agent.  Sam (we will call him) is every company’s ideal contact center employee.  He is a good listener, ...
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Honest feedback from your customers is the best way to improve any hiccups in your Customer Experience. Social norms, however, can get right in the way of getting that honest feedback, at least in some instances. Overcoming the obstacle of social norms is a crucial activity for today’s Customer Experience professionals. We have X surefire ways to get your customers to talk. I’m sure we have all done the following or something similar. You go to a restaurant and there are problems. Maybe the food takes a long time. Maybe the waiter brings the wrong stuff or forgot to leave the cheese off the burger. It could be that the bill was wrong. As you are getting up ...
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Is “customer experience strategy” like the   Wheel of Fortune  spinner? The diversity of what it is in practice among companies today kind of feels that way. Ask 10 companies what their customer experience strategy is and you’ll likely get 10 very different combinations of alphabet soup*: CJM, CRM, VoC, UX, FCR, NPS, AI, self-service, digital marketing, word-of-mouth, customer success, retention programs, loyalty programs, and so forth. Plug these into the spinner and see your fortune.   More importantly, are these strategies or tactics? Look up “strategy” definition and you’ll see: master plan, grand design, game plan, a plan of action designed to achieve ...
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Last month we introduced the topic of  Customer Experience ROI   and the complexity of building a good business case for it. The Customer Experience business case is strong, but not easy to prove. Today we will dive deeper in two big wins of a successful customer experience investment – revenue and customer growth of your business. Revenue Growth Proving customer experience-driven revenue benefits is a surmountable challenge. It is a project that involves team members from each level of your team to engage cross functionally and build a comprehensive analysis with many assumptions and commitments in the future. While the doers build financial models, ...
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I really enjoyed being a part of CXPA's Customer Spark in Birmingham, England last November. It was great to see old friends and to meet new ones as well. It's always an amazing feeling to be around a group of CX professionals, especially at a CXPA event. After that event, I decided that I'd like to spend more time with the CXPA this year. I reached out to a number of CXPA local networking leaders and offered to participate in one of their meetings. In case you haven't heard, Temkin Group has labelled 2018 " The Year of Humanity ," so I created a Humanizing CX Workshop that I will be leading in several cities. We've already held it in Boston, and are ...
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Whether or not Duke Ellington was a cricket fan, I don’t imagine that when he composed this famous song in 1932, that he’d expect that the 2018 Australian cricket team would take his words so literally.  For any of you that have been on a day trip to Mars, or for whom the Final Four in Houston is monopolising your personal sports page, this latest sporting scandal involved something called a Kookabara ball meeting some sandpaper in a dark place (the fielder’s pocket) and players looking for more swing and deviation. There’s got to be a movie title in their somewhere! Terry O’Brien, the chairman of AG Thompson, the Melbourne company that manufactures the ...
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We like to think that influences on our behavior are things of which we are aware. It makes us feel like we are in control. However, forces affect our behavior whether we are aware of them or not. Moreover, the non-conscious influences of which we aren’t mindful have more sway over our behavior than our control-freak selves would like to admit. Non-conscious influences include the most common one that people talk about, subliminal messages. Subliminal messages come from things we sense, either from our eyes, ears, skin, etc., but of which our conscious mind is not aware. Even though our eyes saw something and it has registered in our brain as having been seen, ...
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We want to extend a personal invitation to join us at the CXPA Insight Exchange May 8 - 9th, in The Big Easy! If you have been to one of our Insight Exchanges before, you know this THE event to attend, not only for your career development and inspiration, but the opportunity to connect deeply with your peers - your CX tribe - and feel like you are with your professional family.  If you are considering joining us for the first time, we know you will not be disappointed.    Join us at the CXPA Insight Exchange!  The Insight Exchange is driven by members, for members and unlike any other CX event you’ve attended. This your opportunity to connect with some ...
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Luxury brands and advertising budgets: a redirect needs to happen By Christophe Caïs, CEO of Customer Experience Group   No one can accuse luxury brands of cutting corners where advertising spend is concerned. On average, they divert 8% of their turnover into funding advertising initiatives. In the US for example, luxury brands invested more than $5 billion in advertising last year, accounting for a significant portion of overall marketing expenditure.   Love it or hate it, advertising is a principal ingredient of business success. How else would you make customers be aware of your brand and build an inspirational image? Advertising is also essential ...
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Before we begin talking about where CX should sit in the organization, I want to clarify one thing.  Customer Experience is not a single person.  A company cannot hire one customer experience professional and expect that in a year that company will have a customer-centric corporate culture in place. CX also is not a team that has no visibility and no budget. No one has ever heard of a business successful transformation without extensive change management implications done and without vision and strategy. CX requires individuals and teams with cross functional workshops, new products and processes and heavy communications across the organization. A CX team ...
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Reality is that the customer experience journey or lifecycle is horizontal, fluid, and continuous across a company's various departments and processes. Are we in touch with reality? Most companies relinquish customer experience management to the customer-facing functions. Yet this, too, is precarious, as customer-facing personnel and touch-points are limited in effectiveness by the information, processes, policies, and people that feed into the customer interaction. Lesson for the Future:   In the future, companies that manage customer experience in accordance with reality will be the winners, not only in standing out from the crowd, and the corresponding ...
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All: I have to do an audit for a customer satisfaction survey process by line of business. These surveys are apparently weighted with business rules and reported to a corporate scorecard and corporate customer satisfaction scorecard. Can you direct me to some sources so that I can build out a more comprehensive check and balance system for our survey process? I have started a martrix for population, outbound, inbound [response] to attempt to get statistical reliability or level of confidence. We also pay employee bonuses against these scores. Where do I start? I have put together a matrix for population, outbound, inbound [response] ...
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Rogue One , the recently released Star Wars prequel, got a lot of attention –especially for bringing back a lot what attracted people around the world when the first movie in the series was introduced almost 40 years ago.  Here is the way the plot line of Rogue One has been described:  “In a time of conflict, a group of unlikely heroes band together on a mission to steal the plans to the Death Star, the Empire's ultimate weapon of destruction. This key event in the Star Wars timeline brings together ordinary people who choose to do extraordinary things, and in doing so, become part   of something greater than themselves.”  If this quote were not summarizing ...
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