Customer experience is to be understood as a multidimensional interactive process between a brand and a customer.
The customer experience has to do with emotions, with how the client feels when they interact with a given organization. The process is long; it begins long before the purchase of our products/services is carried out.
We are not only rational beings (homo-economicus). Putting the customer at the center of an organization implies to stop offering just rational attributes to also put forward emotional features.
Today most companies operate in fiercely competitive markets with hardly differentiated products and services. They compete mainly on price.
Customers are now more demanding, are better informed and seek customized products/services. We are facing a paradigm shift regarding the customer’s profile: they want to move their purchasing process to a higher stage: to reach the stage of the emotions and experiences. In this context what can companies do? :
- To provide uniform and tailored customer experiences, containing complete solutions that connect the customer engagement with your brand.
- To increase business agility: supporting growth and innovation; and exploiting leading-edge technologies.
The customer experience is the benchmark for business today. Here are 4 keys to provide good customer experiences that brands should not forget:
- Everything you do has to facilitate and improve the consumers’ lives.
- The consumer experience must continue after the sale.
- Consumers expect instant service.
- This is a culture focused on customer service.
The most urgent task is to eliminate everything generating customer dissatisfaction, by analyzing complaints and discomfort. Big businesses are created with great experiences.
Nowadays as a general rule the customer- brand interaction occurs firstly in online environments. The importance of this first relationship is maximum, and we must pay increasing attention to it.
The omnichannel strategy is crucial. For our customers, our company must be the same regardless of the channel they are using. Since their experience with our brand will be influenced by their experience.
The advent of social media and real-time feedback -via the Internet – allows customers to build and expect a good relationship with your business. Instead of just having contact points. However, we are still learning what this means: in real terms, in terms of pure and simple business practice.
The following are key recommendations to elevate and differentiate the customer experience with your brand:
- Listen to the individual customer. Every relationship requires listening and speaking. Sharpen your ear to the customers’ dreams, goals, passions and aspirations. The opportunity to speak and to be listened to is enjoyable and memorable for your customers. You had better define the customer experience, rather than just business contact points, however successful they were.
- Exploit your differences in products and services. An unforgettable experience must contain something different from the norm. You must be able to highlight these differences between your products and services and those from your competitors. If not, you are to be one of the bunch: and no relationship can be fostered.
- Demonstrate the value of your offer. The first step is being predisposed to find out what your customers want or need. This will create a connection with them, giving more value than the price or quality. A loyal customer who wants to buy from you, and recommends you to others is taken on: repeat and referral business.
- Let somebody see your passion and creativity in each solution. This penchant for new issues attracts/ repels the true innovators from what is more of the same. They essentially seek value in every experience, in every conversation. They do not look for recipes.
- Corroborate your personal commitment. When in contact with customers, focus 100 percent on them, and do everything possible to identify and meet their needs. Remember, customers are the raison d’etre of your business. Accord them respect and you will get the results you deserve: they will talk to others about your good work and your business.
- Win the customers’ hearts and minds . Commitment and an emotional connection will make a relationship with the customer the driving force for loyalty and differentiation. Move forward: from kindness towards customer, to charisma towards customer. Businesses with charisma give the customers something very special, and they will want to chat about this with others.
All in all, the customer experience is the cumulative impact of multiple contact points over time. And that will be translated into a sense of effective relationship with our brand, or else the lack of this rapport.