Why should you have a Customer Experience strategy at all? Well, in a market environment that’s more and more consolidated, standing out on customer experience is crucial. And even if you have a great service or product, business won’t be good if the customer experience is not up to par.
A customer experience strategy should cover all steps of the customer journey. It should include, not only the product itself, but everything from marketing, website, sales, support, help guides and customer success. And you should also have a clear communication plan about the CX strategy to your fellow colleagues.
Here are seven steps you should keep in mind when creating and optimizing your CX strategy.
1 Get the buy-in
For a CX strategy to work, you need to get everyone onboard. And by that I mean everyone, but extra important is top management.
“And how do I do that?”, you may ask. Well, fancy power point presentations can get you a long way, but if you create your strategy so that it’s linked to key business priorities, and base everything you do on facts and numbers, then you will get a strategy that is undeniable.
2 Map out the customer journey
Mapping out the customer journey is usually best to do in groups. Get people from different departments together and create a timeline. What are the different touch points for the customers. Which are crucial, which are standard and are there some that is less important to the customer experience? when being able to visually see the journey, it’s easier to decide what do do where.
Also make sure to define who is the owner of each of those touch points. This will help drive change when it comes to actually executing the plan.
3 Create a clear plan
Creating your actual CX plan might look completely different for every company. But here are some questions to help you along the process.
What are the steps your CX plan should involve, on a high level? Which touch points should be included? Are there any sub levels that you need to go through to get a nice roll-out? At what rate will we deliver these? What are the success markers for every step?
Make sure you have time to adjust the plan, if needed
4 Align your company around the plan
A Customer Experience strategy will not be great if not all areas within the company have what they need. I’ve already mentioned the buy-in, to get everyone onboard. But we also need systems and key-functions to align with the strategy. Does your support have everything they need to reach that “90% thumbs-up rate” that you set in the plan? Have sales got clear information about what the “recruit a friend and get a discount” campaign really mean?
No man, or department, is an island. Especially not when it comes to CX. Everyone needs to be aligned with the program for it to work as you’ve planned.
5 Measure and monitor step by step
Many fail with their CX strategy because they want to fix everything at once. Clean up the interface while making the webpage easier to navigate, make help guides better while getting sales and support to speak about the product in a more non-technical way. All at the same time…. Don’t.
By enrolling your strategy, piece by piece, while measuring and monitoring, your CX strategy decisions will be based on cold hard facts. And when something is based on facts, it’s easier to argue your point when people ask why you’ve taken the route you’ve done or has an opinion on what he or she thinks should be done instead.
6 Change is hard – keep everyone involved
There’s no other way to say it; change is hard. When employees are expected to work in a different system, do new actions, report new numbers, or whatever the CX strategy may entail, it’s highly likely that your colleagues will have opinions. Some will think it’s good and some will think it’s bad.
That is why it is so good to base your decisions on data. But it’s also important to communicate and have an open dialogue with everyone. Keep all employees involved, at least at some level.
This applies to customers as well. Even though you make changes to make the customer experience better, some might not like it initially. Make sure you can explain why the changes are made and communicate larger changes in plenty of time ahead. That way, things won’t come as a shock to customers.
7 Work in an agile way
As stated before, don’t try to do everything at once, and try to measure everything you do. This will help you stop guessing and will give you a clear view of if what you’re doing is working. And when you see that something is not working, make sure to adjust and correct that right away. Measure again. Is it working better now? If not, then what needs to be changed?
By working in an agile way, you company will be able to adapt and change to make sure the customer experience is always where it needs to be.
At Dstny, we have an obsession for CX. We are constantly working on what and how we can improve regarding our systems, our set-up and our services. This includes every step of the way, from our Service Providers, their partners and the end user.