Your customer’s experience isn’t just a personal thing. After interacting with your company, he will probably draw his own conclusions, which will affect his further behavior and possibly the attitude of his friends towards you. And managing this experience is not only possible, but also necessary.
What is customer experience
The term refers to the sum total of a buyer’s or customer’s conscious and unconscious impressions of a company. He may not actually buy from you, but he may have a positive or negative attitude toward the brand. It is important that he receives and forms all his impressions throughout his life, continuing even if the brand is not on the market.
But the customer experience is not just their thoughts and impressions. Thanks to modern marketing, companies have learned to use it as a technique for building close and long-term relationships with the target audience in 3 basic stages:
Step 1. Action. First, marketers launch certain advertising campaigns to sell the company’s goods and services.
Step #2. Observation. Next, the reaction of potential customers and those who actually completed the conversion action is noted.
Step #3. Reaction. Based on the data obtained, the company can make changes not only in advertising campaigns and strategies, but also objectively improve the interaction with the target audience.
What is the benefit of such a technique? The most important advantage is to take into account the opinions of potential customers in real time. If your ad campaign is unsuccessful, you can use the data you collect about your customer experience to improve your marketing strategy. If, on the contrary, the customers are satisfied and 100% satisfied, nothing will stop you from exceeding the expectations of your target audience.
And, as you know, high customer satisfaction is the key to high demand for brand products and a great chance that one satisfied customer will recommend you to 10 others. Look at the statistics Medal and SHOULD BE:
– 77% customers choose a store or brand because of positive previous experiences;
– 47% people do not want to cooperate with companies, online and offline stores after reading negative reviews;
– 87% customers will not return to a company with which they have negative memories;
– 22 – this is how many people will learn from your customer about his negative experience and 8 – for the positive;
– 10+ positive ratings are the minimum necessary to offset a negative customer experience.
Based on these statistics, it becomes clear that customer experience is not just a phenomenon that cannot be influenced. It can and should be controlled. Thus, a new direction in marketing was born – CEM.
CEM in modern realities
Customer experience management was translated into Russian literally as “customer experience management” and the term was shortened to the abbreviation CEM. In short, this marketing idea says that it is not enough to just provide quality service to the online or offline customer. It is not enough for a company to know which products and services it prefers.
To effectively manage the customer experience, it is necessary to subtly understand the motives and interests of the target audience in order to form and maintain an interaction with them. The fact is that over the past few years the concept has gained more and more importance customer portrait: It is a collection of characteristics of a person that can influence his buying behavior. Among the most important are gender, age, income level, profession, education.
Unfortunately, most companies come to the need to manage mass customers only when they have received a shock dose of negative feedback. Most often – in the form of rejecting customers.
The downside of CEM is that it is expensive. You can’t just go and find out all the personal information about a particular person’s customer experience. You need to organize your own data collection and analysis system with subsequent implementation in advertising strategies. But despite this investment of time and effort, customer experience management has many benefits:
– Strengthening the loyalty of current customers. When they have a positive shopping experience every time, they will be happy to come back to you and recommend you to their friends. In fact, you will love sign level.
– Strengthening awareness of the company. With more brand mentions online and interpersonal conversations, it will reach new heights of market awareness. It is important to simultaneously work on recognition online and offline.
– Increasing the number of new customers. These are the ones who will come to you based on referrals or because of multiple mentions on websites, forums and social networks. Of course, counting on a positive experience.
– Overall increase in new customers. Statistics will vary depending on many factors: business area, chosen content strategy, quality of SEO texts, etc. But the overall increase in site traffic and conversion will be noticeable.
– Increasing the company’s income. Logicallythat the more customers you have, the greater their satisfaction with the product and service, the more active you can expect financial flows in your accounts.
– Reduced budgets for direct marketing. You will reduce your bounce rate and actual customer churn, so you will have less need to advertise your products and services. Marketing optimization will help you free up budgets for other areas to grow your business.
As a result of the high-quality use of CEM, we receive the most valuable type of advertising – word of mouth. Your customer is so pleased that they want to share their experience with everyone they know and don’t know. He will recommend your company personally, write positive reviews and recommendations, increasing the awareness and reputation of the company.
Key features of CEM
Customer experience is a fickle phenomenon. It is not simply classified into positive and negative, but also speaks of modification from one type to another. And if the transformation of the negative attitude of the target audience into a positive one is great for the company, then the reverse process will bring only a decline in reputation and financial loss.
Therefore, it is not enough to just observe the behavior of buyers from the outside. You should be able to implement CEM practices in your project’s content strategy. To do this, start by studying the key features of a customer experience management system:
1) Customer Journey
At the heart of CEM is customer journey map instead of a traditional sales funnel. With its help, it is possible to identify the problems that prevent the client from buying, as well as correct them and get detailed statistics on the interaction with the target audience.
2) Loyalty of the target audience
Only a positive customer experience can provide the company with the desired loyalty of the target audience and the willingness to return to you again. Therefore, CEM practitioners focus their attention on measuring and controlling the customer experience, which can be transformed into true loyalty.
3) Marketing planning
The traditional approach to planning in the form of Deming’s Plan-Do-Check-Act cycle (plan-to-check-act) has been replaced by a new model:
– listen (observing the actions of the target audience at different stages of their journey);
– analyze (comparing the impact of positive and negative experiences);
– act (make changes to correct negative impressions);
– evaluation (detailed evaluation of the results of advertising campaigns).
4) Customer opinions
Customer feedback is incredibly valuable. If, with the traditional approach to business relations, companies are confident that they know their target audience (especially in the B2B segment), then CEM convinces them of the need to fully encourage customers to share their opinions. Yes, their opinion should really matter to you.
Content is traditionally considered a useful adjunct to marketing, but CEM almost puts it on a pedestal. If you find out that your target audience needs “what, where, when” articles – provide them with informative support. User experience management experts urge you not to ignore content marketing, because the average customer spends at least 50% of their life cycle in contact with texts, videos and infographics.
6) Seamless integration
It is important to remember that customer experience management is not only about the quality of the service itself: how your support service works, what texts are published on the website and social networks, how friendly and timely you process people’s requests . It is extremely difficult to satisfy a customer if the quality of the product or service is questionable. So it’s only fair that you should work both ways to talk about the effectiveness of your CEM system.
7) Market positioning
Correct positioning can fight against objections customer and increase conversion. If the sales idea is presented in language accessible to the target audience, consists of the benefits of the potential customer and other breaking arguments, the consumer will have no desire to look for an alternative.
How to measure customer experience
To the delight of the specialists who are responsible for CEM, there are special metrics for assessing the quality of your customer experience management. Among them, experts identify 3 key parameters:
– Customer Loyalty Index (NPS): the number of loyal customers must be divided by the number of dissatisfied ones;
– customer satisfaction score (CSAT): divide the sum of all scores obtained by the total number of respondents.
– User Effort Score (CES): the user answers a closed survey “Was it easy to order?”, consisting of 3-5 answers (difficult, normal, easy).
All of these metrics help you know how satisfied each of your customers is with your company as a whole. If you use additional methods, then you will be able to get more detailed data: what they think about the texts and other content, how good they think the product or service is, whether they like your support service, etc.
If you find yourself in need of customer experience management, use this checklist:
1. Identify company weaknesses using metrics (service, product, etc.).
2. Analyze the obtained data and find out the main problems.
3. Think and come up with a list of recommendations.
4. Implement CEM principles to improve your performance.
5. Set a deadline and compare how the user experience has changed during this time.
The best customer experience management strategy comes with time. It is important to understand that there will always be dissatisfied customers, and this is absolutely normal. Your goal is to reduce the number of dissatisfied people and increase the number of loyal ones. In this case, we can talk about an effective customer experience management system.