Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Customer Experience beyond Customer Service

Look at customer service as ordinary and customer experience as extraordinary.

Being customer-centric means from strategic making to execution, customer is the focal point from cross-functional perspective, and customer delight moves from customer service to customer experience and customer success. More specifically, what’re the differentiation between Customer Service and Customer Experience?

Look at Customer Service as ordinary and Customer Experience as extraordinary: Customer service is what is provided when Customer Experience isn't integrated to a project from the beginning! Customer service is what you do as part of company operations - it's the ordinary. Delivering an optimum experience requires the extra. It’s where customer expectation is exceeded on purpose!  Customer Service is what a company thinks it's providing. It's measured and reported internally. "Customer Experience" is how the customer perceives the service. It encompasses complex emotions that can be difficult to measure. The more channels a company has, the harder it becomes to maintain a consistent and efficient customer experience, typically widening the gap between what a company thinks it's providing and how the customer sees it. There is often talk of creating great service or wonderful experiences, without prioritizing the identification and targeting of pain-points to make it easier for customers to make the decision to purchase. It is a strategic level business decision to plan well and achieve optimal customer experience.

Customer experience is the sum of many parts to delight customers. It’s the way the customer experiences the brand of whole company, not just direct customer service interactions. Too many companies focus customer experience improvement efforts on just their direct customer service efforts, and sometimes only limited interactions in that service set, they forget all the other ways a customer is impacted and feels the effect of the company. The more customer contact points an organization has, the more difficult it is to meet and hopefully deliver on customers expectations. That said, extreme effort and resources have to be out towards doing so, otherwise failure is a real possible outcome. Customer Experience is the act of building a relationship between the customer-facing employees and the customer to create a bond with the company and enhance brand loyalty. Perfect customer experience would reduce a lot of spend on customer service.

It takes time, personal effort and resources to optimize customer experience, but it’s worth the effort. Being a leader in delivering an outstanding customer experience is not easy, but the return on investment is beyond any expectation any C-level could ever have, because that drive, has to come from the top, and the ongoing focus will summon his/her teams to endeavor to deliver an experience that will amaze each customer each and every time. Customer Service is the human and non-human instruments deployed by businesses to serve its customers. Customer Experience is the long lasting delight those services leaves in his/her heart. A customer delighted is a customer retained…

Either Customer Service or Customer Experience, the focus on customer success is the key, as it changes your way of thinking from reactive to proactive perspective - how do you make the customer successful, using the service, platform etc. Customer Experience says a lot more than just customer service, It’s the “WOW” factor to delight customers. There's an expectation of more than just service now, but for future as well.


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