January 2, 2014
If I hear one more marketer talk to me about the customer experience being the be-all and end-all of their marketing efforts, I think I might get ill.
Customer experience, good or bad, is the culmination of experiences a consumer has with a brand over the course of the entire relationship. While pretty much everyone agrees with that definition, only 4% of online marketers say they do a good job in executing this strategy, according to a report from Econsultancy. That’s because providing a great customer experience over multiple touchpoints and channels is, well, hard.
Let me give you another way to think about it. While I agree it’s all about the customer, it’s when the customer wins with the brand multiple times that the scales will tip in your favor. As a leader in a marketing acceleration software company, I believe that when the customer wins, you win as a marketer.
The tricky part is that you need to know what “winning” means for each of your customers, and then have the ability to do something with that knowledge by way of messaging the consumer. I’m not talking about customer relationship management (CRM), which I will save for another time. Rather, you have to leverage “marketing acceleration” technologies that are affordable and easy to implement and use. However, you only get the maximum value from this investment when you think of letting the customer win as opposed to just focusing exclusively on the “experience.”
Let me give you an example: Best Buy had an offer for the exact television I was looking for during Black Friday weekend using this type of marketing acceleration technology. I purchased it online and decided to pick it up at my local store. It was a great deal. I thought I had won.
What I didn’t realize was that on my original television purchase, I had to get there within 10 days, or my purchase would be cancelled and all of the other accessories I was buying would be useless.
Lucky for me, 11 days later when I walked into my local Best Buy, the in-store customer service team explained the situation to me and overrode the now higher retail price with the Black Friday sale price. Well done, Best Buy.
While I’m impressed that Best Buy has put the decision making on the “outer edges” of its organization, they could have done more to really make me feel like I won before I even walked into the store. First, I would have sent a series of email messages reminding me that I hadn’t picked up my order and that it would be cancelled soon, along with some other offers that might help me win with my new purchase. They also could have sent me a text message reminder. If any of that happened, I would've won again. Luckily the in-store customer service tech saved the win.
Create a better overall customer experience by leveraging marketing acceleration technology, coordinated with other touchpoints, allowing the consumer to win with your brand and in the moment.