According to Mark Taylor, a worldwide leader in Cognizant’s Digital Experience group, customer experience cannot be achieved in a vacuum; it requires a multilayered ecosystem that consistently and repeatedly delivers on the brand promise.
What is it like to deal with a company? Do you make use of its products and services? Enter its establishment? Is it time to update its app? Contact the customer service department? This is the customer experience: all aspects of a consumer’s interactions with a firm, with a capital “all.” And it is this that is gradually defining the brand.
Previously, a brand existed primarily in the minds of customers as a result of messages delivered through advertising, media, and marketing. Today, the promise of a brand is largely embodied in the experiences that the brand allows.
As a result, success is dependent on how those experiences are managed — how they are united for the consumer and, as a result, how the brand’s organizational capabilities are unified to offer the experience.
While businesses recognize the value of experience, few are tackling it comprehensively. According to a recent Forrester Consulting survey (needs registration), 95 percent of respondents feel enhancing customer experience is either critical or extremely important, yet just 18 percent prioritize and invest in it sufficiently to see significant business returns.
It’s A Knowledge Economy.
The influence of today’s “experience economy” will only expand over time – yet if you attempted to name more than ten established businesses competing and winning on the experience they provide, you definitely couldn’t. We believe this is due to enterprises’ fragmented approach to experience.
Most organizations may believe that experience focuses on offering a high-quality product. Or perhaps that experience is equal to design — the way a product, website, store, or mobile app functions. They may believe that a technological platform, such as CRM, or a data platform that provides a 360-degree perspective of the customer, defines the experience. Perhaps they believe it is the contact center…
However, it is none of these things, or rather all of them. Every single encounter a customer has with a firm creates an experience for them.
While considering customer experience in this manner may be freeing, it can also be hard. This is because, in order to provide a consistent, predictable, and enjoyable continuing experience for customers, brands must coordinate more aspects than most businesses realize.
As a result, we believe that the brand leaders of the future will be those who systematize experience delivery. This is referred to as “experience orchestration,” and it entails building a multilayered ecosystem that consistently and repeatedly provides the intended experience across business divisions.
What Employers Think About Experience
Over 700 business and experience executives were polled in our Forrester survey to discover the behaviors and attitudes that contribute to company success via customer experience. Among the most intriguing findings: Businesses virtually never truly own the experiences they provide. Instead, key components of that experience are delivered by workers, partners, and even consumers themselves.
The survey also highlighted the importance that top firms focus on the role of workers in delivering a positive customer experience. They frequently regard the employee’s journey as equally essential as, and inextricably linked to, the customer’s, and they include this vision into their strategy.
These businesses provide employees with more and better technology, ensure they have easy access to customer data, work to understand the mechanics of employee-customer engagement, see employee enablement is critical to customer success, and seek to use ongoing insights to improve how employees serve customers.
Employees are only one component of the ecosystem that leads to great customer experiences, but their important position highlights the numerous obstacles involved in attaining success, as well as the necessity for businesses to think in terms of complete systems.
Directing The Experience
We strive to combine the science of intimacy with the art of industrialization while dealing with customers. To put it another way, companies must not only understand the determinants of consumer choice; they must also fulfill these preferences across channels, time, and situations – consistently, relevantly, repeatably, and in whatever way customers choose to connect. We allow our clients to easily scale useful and valued experiences across their marketing, sales, and service demands using our experience blueprint approach.
In one case of experience orchestration, we are assisting big European financial services firm in redesigning its staff and customer experience. The company is transitioning from a structure with 34 different products and six business units to a customer-centric one based on 11 interconnected customer journeys. We mapped each of these experiences down through the organization’s major operational levels — the employee experience, customer data, the technology platform, and business processes — to guarantee efficient, integrated, and consistent delivery.
Similarly, for major famous automobile businesses, we assisted in improving the customer and dealer experience by creating a new and simplified interaction model, which we enabled via a proprietary interaction platform. Intimacy and industrialization work together to increase client acquisition and connections while lowering cost per sale.
Technology is, of course, essential in this and our other client engagements; but, we think that the brands that thrive will be those that ultimately bring the brand to life in a human sense. To do so, you must listen carefully, be sympathetic, and modulate your interactions depending on changing consumer signals – in other words, you must use sophisticated technologies like AI and machine learning to enable your brand to behave more like a person at a scale that no human can.
Not Only The Question Of ‘What,’ But Also Of ‘How,’ Must Be Addressed.
Marshall McLuhan stated more than 50 years ago, “The medium is the message.” This concept may and should be applied to customer experience; in other words, the experience is determined by how it is given. Consumers and workers will have an experience with your brand, and by adopting a comprehensive approach to the design and execution of that experience, you will have the best opportunity of influencing how they feel about it afterwards.
Delivering an intimate-feeling experience at scale should be a key priority for the whole C-suite, from the CIO’s strategic plan to the CFO’s budget objectives. Finally, the brand experience pervades the organisation.