Emotions in CX isn’t a philosophical question; it’s a requirement of creating a good customer experience, and it’s changing how businesses compete in the experience economy.
Every CEO knows that experiences drive customer expectations, brand perceptions, and can make or break an organization’s success.
Be it customer service, product quality, or how consumers feel about the companies they do business with, it’s customer experience that ultimately determines whether or not they decide to make a purchase. And whether they’ll happily return time and again in the future.
While the customer experience isn’t a new concept, the transition from a service to experience economy requires a major shift in the way brands engage and interact with individual customers, and emotion in CX is now being recognized as critical to brand success.
So much so that the most successful companies of the future will be those that up their game to become truly customer-centric and experience-focused.
Emotions in CX: Customer experience is the new brand
In today’s world, consumers face an overwhelming number of choices. And it’s the customer experience itself that increasingly influences purchasing behaviors.
These digitally empowered consumers have high expectations that include a streamlined convenient experience in every channel—online, on the phone, and in person—and want products and services that exactly meet their needs.
What’s more they place a premium on how well companies know them as individuals, using these insights to elevate each and every customer journey. Indeed, research reveals 86 percent of consumers willingly spend more on products and services from brands that engage with them in the manner they expect.
For consumers, providing a positive end-to-end experience that’s personalized and fully aligned with their expectations is the key to winning their business and lasting loyalty.
To deliver such stand-out experiences, companies must zero in on customer wants, needs, and expectations to get closer to the consumer than ever before. Using this intelligence to make improvements to things like price, product, service quality, support and more in order to retain and grow market share.
Minding the experience gap
Measuring and monitoring the customer experience is vital for driving the operational or process changes that can optimize customer satisfaction, loyalty, and advocacy.
But while 80 percent of CEOs believe they deliver a superior customer experience, only eight percent of their customers feel the same.
It’s a paradox that keeps business leaders up at night. Solely relying on operational data like sales, margins and revenue means it’s all too easy to become deaf to the voices of customers—and what they really want and value.
With four-out-of-five consumers switching brands due to a poor experience, closing the gap between customers’ expectations and their actual experiences is proving a pressing commercial priority.
The transformative power of X + O data
For savvy CEOS, understanding how their organization actually delivers for customers is just the tip of the iceberg.
For them, the ability to interlock operational performance data (O-data) with experience data (X-data) from customers is proving a game-changer. One that makes it possible to uncover and react fast to issues fast, predict what customers will do next, and identify new opportunities that include:
- initiating feedback-inspired product and packaging innovations
- embarking on personalized manufacturing based on consumer/customer preferences
- reducing R&D costs and cycle times by targeting specific demands
- delivering more personalized engagements, products, promotions and pricing
- linking fulfillment to demand signals to deliver orders with speed, agility, and effectiveness
- nurturing ongoing relationships to create customers for life
- understanding customer and consumer payment preferences, and embedding these in eCommerce capabilities
- enabling innovative new business opportunities, such as subscription services, and direct-to-consumer relationships.
By leveraging powerful new customer experience (CX) platforms that make it easy to combine X-data with O-data to gain actionable insights at every step of the customer journey, they’re able to bridge the gap between understanding how effectively their company operates and how customers experience key aspects of their company.
Using this newfound ability to measure and improve every interaction, they’re turning customers into fans who stay longer, spend more, and tell their friends.
And the breakthrough results speak for themselves—highly engaged customers make 90 percent more frequent purchases and spend 60 percent more for each transaction. What’s more, companies that are able to increase customer retention rates by just 5 percent can achieve up to a 95 percent increase in profits.
But that’s not all. These trail blazing organizations are also acting on experience data to develop and build products that people love by putting customers at the heart of every decision they make—from market assessment and concept testing, to pricing and user research.
Emotions rule the day (and wallet) – do you understand how your customers feel?
As we’ve seen, these days, there’s a lot riding on delivering a positive customer experience – emotions in CX need to be considered and understood whenever possible.
By connecting X-data to their operations and processes, forward-thinking consumer product companies are embracing experience management to drive customer-led growth, enable new business models, and identify new ways to engage with customers more effectively.