Earlier this month, Ian Golding, Founder of the Customer Experience Consultancy and leader of the CX Professional Masterclass, joined Peter Dorrington, Director of Analytics at TTEC, at a CXPA & TTEC Breakfast Workshop.
Participants explored concerning data highlighted by Forrester, which shows that Customer Experience performance has fallen flat for the third year in a row.
In a joint article for CXM, Ian and Peter explore how the advances in CX measurement can curb this trend…
The Past, Present and Future of CX Measurement – Ian Golding
Although companies are using a number of CX measurements and capturing details, the majority are not taking action or worse, applying them incorrectly and so they come to the wrong conclusion.
NPS and CSAT scores are cost-effective and easy ways of getting feedback from customers and an easy way for customers to provide feedback. Many would argue over time they have been shown to be valuable, credible systems for customer-focussed companies. However, many companies are failing to apply them correctly and increasingly they are being used as a tick-box to please stakeholder and shareholders.
Consumer experience is fast becoming a dominant theme for financial services and the FCA is increasingly focussed on quantifiable customer outcomes. To ensure the reliability of measures of satisfaction, they have issued a mandate that results are collected independently and widely published. Improving CX can influence people to switch supplier with the promise of getting better customer service, but consumers need a reliable way of assessing the experience that organisations provide.
More CX measurements will be regulated if companies cannot do it accurately and continue to publish inaccurate results as part of their advertising and brand promotion.
The Voice of Customer (VOC) and Voice of the Employee (VOE) are often listened to and treated entirely separately. Organisations that run VOC and VOE programmes usually conduct them at different times, using different teams – for example VOE is often confused with Employee Engagement. What’s more, they’ll invariably have entirely different objectives and different KPIs against which outcomes are measured. It is vital to check that your employees feel the same way about your service as customers. VOE can provide a vital check and balance to VOC, with a wide disparity between the two being a cause for concern.
VOC and VOE results should be broadly similar. Something is wrong if they are not. Also ensure your Voice of the Employee surveys are anonymous and that something with the results – both programmes should provide the impetus and insight for action.
The most robust CX measurement systems are structured by correlating business processes with the customer journey. If we think of all organisations as a combination of ‘layers’, whilst the top layer is the customer journey, the middle layer is made up of business processes. It is a business’s processes that enable the customer journey to happen. The bottom layer comprises the technology that enables business processes to deliver the customer outcome. However, all too often, it is the technology that is forcing the customer process, so the customer gets whatever that manifests itself as.
For a business to be focussed on knowing what to address to improve the customer journey it must be able to measure “cause and effect”. If you measure how capable business processes are at doing what they need to do, you should see an improvement in the way customers feel about what you do.
Unfortunately, too many companies are mapping customer journeys without measuring their experience of each touch point as it relates to customer needs.
Using Emotion Analytics to Understand What Customers Value, and Why – Peter Dorrington
“Customer experience management is the art and science of coaxing lifetime loyalty from daily transactions.”
“Customers who are emotionally connected with a brand are 52% more valuable than customers who are just highly satisfied”
Harvard Business Review
The above quotes show the power of emotion.
Imagine being able to use that to not only measure how well your CX strategy is doing but to increase loyalty and revenues.
Work in the field of behavioural economics has demonstrated just how dependent on emotions we are for decision-making – even very big decisions, where we think we are acting ‘rationally’. Research into the placebo effect demonstrates just how powerful the brain is in influencing the body and decisions. Emotions are an important part of how we experience and how we make decisions and It is now possible to anticipate the emotional state of every customer, whether you are in an active conversation with them or not.
A lot of organisations have recognised that if CX is the new competitive battleground, not only does it have to be good, but it has to be relevant and valued by the person experiencing it – and therefore you have to address their emotions; what they care about.
TTEC’s research shows that business can make quantifiable improvements in their customer-facing decision-making if they have a way of knowing what the customer feels. At the highest level of abstraction, emotion analytics could support the design of more efficient and effective customer experiences at the strategic level – by putting the ‘relationship’ back into customer relationship management. When it knows that a customer has emotional, as well as practical needs, a business is better able to meet all their needs.
If a business could understand within customer journeys how customers feel at different stages – what might be motivating them, what might influence their decisions – then it is better able design a better experience; resulting in a better experience, higher satisfaction, and all the benefits that brings; increased revenues, lower churn and more powerful advocacy.
Turning CX insights into hyper personalised experiences
One example of how this insight could be used would be in the arena of receptiveness. An organisation could convert the emotions into understanding whether a customer would be receptive to hearing from it. This would therefore influence whether they are marketed to, what is marketed to them and how it is done.
Think of upselling someone from a gold card to the platinum card. But just before we send the messaging, we do a check to see if the person is receptive and it becomes clear they are not – perhaps there has been a transactional issue, or there may be more of an emotional zeitgeist thing where banks are getting hammered in the press.
Not only should we consider emotions in the operational aspects of our business, we need to think about the role they play in the product or service itself.
Elsewhere, there are also implications for the way that inbound interactions are handled. For instance, an organisation may be able to anticipate that the customer will call and that if she calls she will be upset, so the company can put her through to a senior handler who is better at dealing those kinds of conversations (i.e. have high EQ).
The use of emotional insights could also extend into the world of bots and AI, enabling organisations to choose which script to use and which tone of voice to adopt. And the evidence shows that people will pay a premium to those organisations that they believe will make them feel the way that they want to expect to feel as well as which actions could be taken to cost-effectively strengthen the relationship.
Not only should we consider emotions in the operational aspects of our business, we need to think about the role they play in the product or service itself: as well as considering the functional needs of the customer, think about their (changing) emotional needs as well; it affects everything they do and research shows that customers will pay a premium to organisations they think will meet their emotional needs better. And our own research shows that customers are more loyal towards companies that meet their emotional needs.
Finally, TTEC’s research also shows that customer don’t always need a ‘better’ Customer Experience, preferring that the experiences they have predictable meet their expectations on a consistent basis. The implications for organisation is this; it is often better to maintain the level of the experience, but focus on aligning it to customer expectations and reduce the cost and complexity of delivery.
Companies must upgrade their CX measurements to capture customers’ emotions. How customers feel about their experiences with a firm can damage – or improve – their perception of the overall experience and the brand!