Several customer experience (CX) experts examined what it takes to provide seamless customer experiences in today's always-on, always-connected global marketplace during a panel discussion for Argyle's CX membership at the 2018 Customer Experience Leadership Forum in San Francisco on March 22. The discussion, "Delivering Seamless Customer Engagement and Support in a Hyper-Connected World," featured insights from the following panelists:
Vice President, Innovation
Customer Experience Global Service Manager
Vice President, Global Solutions Engineering & Alliances
Vice President of Customer Lifecycle and Success
Vice President, Customer Success, Support
The panelists explored a variety of CX topics during the discussion, including:
1. Defining CX
CX often has different definitions to different companies. Yet a clear-cut definition enables a company to teach its employees about what it takes to deliver effective customer experiences to all customers, at all times.
Ultimately, a positive CX requires a company to provide its customers with the support they need, exactly when they need it. If a company can fulfill customer requests, it can boost the likelihood of fostering long-lasting customer partnerships.
"If you are reaching out to us, what can we do to help you find more information and help you get what you need, even if you don't know what that is for yourself," Chan said. "We also want to give customers an experience … that they will love to have with us again."
In addition, a company must be ready to empower its customers. If customers can access a variety of resources and tools to overcome problems, a business can consistently satisfy customer requests.
"The best customer service for me is the customer service that works. You don't need to call [a company]. Instead, the company's service just works," Galpaz stated.
2. Delivering Positive Customer Experiences Across Multiple Channels
Omnichannel is a key priority for many businesses, but few companies can deliver positive experiences across a broad range of channels.
For today's businesses, it is important to learn about their target audiences. Then, these companies can determine which channels their customers require and tailor their CX strategies accordingly.
"There are different phases within the customer journey … and for us, mapping that out and knowing each customer touchpoint is important."
It may be beneficial for companies to deploy self-service options as well. By providing self-service options to customers, businesses can empower customers with the ability to resolve problems on their own. Perhaps most important, self-service options can help businesses simultaneously bolster their customer satisfaction levels and reduce their operating costs.
"We need to define who are our customers and what is the journey that they see," Galpaz noted. "We want to become more than an exception center … and we want to let customers to resolve issues on their own."
3. Improving the Customer Journey
The customer journey may prove to be long and complex, particularly for a business that fails to analyze its customer engagement efforts. As such, businesses should use data management tools to learn about their target audiences and find the best ways to interact with consumers at each stage of the customer journey.
"We want to make sure our customer tooling is up to date based on what we know," Chan indicated. "We shouldn't have the same customer reiterate what they're saying from one channel to the next."
Journey mapping may be exceedingly important to a company, regardless of its size or industry.
With effective journey mapping, a company can take a step-by-step approach to drive customer engagement. As a result, this business can engage and inform consumers and help them quickly and effortlessly move along the customer journey.
"There are different phases within the customer journey … and for us, mapping that out and knowing each customer touchpoint is important," Tang said.
4. Reducing Customer Effort
Customer data is readily available, and businesses must find ways to transform this information into meaningful insights.
"If you are reaching out to us, what can we do to help you find more information and help you get what you need, even if you don't know what that is for yourself."
If a company uses data collection and analysis tools, it can find ways to reduce customer effort. Plus, a business can leverage data across multiple departments, thereby eliminating departmental silos that otherwise can hinder this company's day-to-day operations.
"We see a lot of silos in organizations as they look for ways to reduce their efforts and manage their particular needs," Din pointed out. "And there is a whole lot of unsolicited, untapped data that is out there."
5. The Concept of "Seamless"
Identifying and addressing customer pain points is crucial. If companies understand why customers may choose to interact with one brand over another, they can take the necessary steps to enhance their CX strategies. Then, these businesses can connect with customers and provide them with seamless experiences.
"Companies are looking at what kinds of pain points are our customers experiencing that are driving our satisfaction metrics downwards," Din noted. "We need to figure out what actions we can take to drive [satisfaction] scores back upwards."
Jonathan Alloy is Vice President for Innovation at Wells Fargo. Over his decade with the bank, he's also held leadership roles in product management and marketing for wholesale banking and community banking. Jonathan is a regular conference host and speaker for Argyle Leadership and Innovation Forums. He holds an MBA from the University of Michigan and a BS from Frostburg State University.
Katherine is a Global Service Manager for Airbnb's customer experience team based in the San Francisco headquarters. In her role, she is responsible for strategy and service design for Airbnb's existing and future premium customer segments as well as the love team, which focuses on guest and host recognition.
Eric Din is the Vice President of Global Solutions Engineering & Alliances for Clarabridge. Eric leads a global solutions engineering team that designs and demonstrates how customer feedback analytics can uncover the root cause of customer pain points and be used to grow enterprise CX maturity programs. Eric also runs the Clarabridge alliances program and works with large service integration companies and technology companies that complement the Clarabridge solution.
Nir has been a customer success executive for the last 20 years, building teams, processes and systems to improve customer experiences while reducing churn. His journey took him from hardware and software to XaaS, where the entire customer lifecycle has to be addressed as a whole.
Karen leads the customer success, learn, and support teams at Prezi, and she is passionate about growing and delivering value for its customer base. She leads the charge in expanding Prezi into teams and businesses and helping business users adopt and maximize the value of Prezi.