The term “consumer experience” is often bandied about like some throwaway management jargon term, quick to be replaced by next season’s “better” term. But, that’s the wrong way to view it. It’s not just a buzzword or nebulous concept that doesn’t actually mean anything. Customer experience is an important piece of your business or marketing plan that you cannot afford to ignore.
Many business owners and managers treat customer experience like a program that they can implement with a single training program. According to a recent study, only 1 percent of customers feel that vendors consistently meet their expectations, and 86 percent of those interviewed admitted they’d actually pay more for a better consumer experience.
The question is, are you part of the very small group of businesses that’s investing in their customers’ experience?
A recent Forbes article by Christine Crandell says the real dilemma comes about when organizations begin to ask themselves which should come first – business strategy or consumer experience?
“Culture drives strategy which drives structure” wrote Crandell. “It is still true today. Consumer experience is a catalyst of transformation. It directly impacts culture, strategy, structure and all parts of a business.”
We couldn’t agree more. Your business’ customer experience management program shouldn’t be an afterthought. Rather, it should go hand-in-hand with every aspect of business planning you do. In other words, it’s the chicken.
Consumer experience management isn’t just a program you launch. It’s not something that sits on the shelf in a 3-ring binder, or gets 30 minutes in the new employees training program. Customer experience management needs to permeate everything you do. It needs to be in the water, to leach into your bones. Your employees need to breathe consumer experience and satisfaction.
If you can make customer experience management part of your total culture, it will drive every strategy you ever create — marketing, accounts payable, logistics — and that will create the structure your company operates under. You’ll be rewarded with loyal customers who bring more loyal customers to you, increasing your bottom line exponentially.