Building sustainable conversations & interactions with the existing client base can be challenging for some companies, since today´s customers are literally bombarded with possibilities, offers and pricing options. Now, this is the precise moment when customer experience management starts to play an important role.
According to an unofficial study about customer experience management, the average customer retention rate is around 82% in companies that apply best customer engagement practices versus just 24% in laggard companies.
Customers should always be treated with the very best customer engagement practices and never with a one-size-fits-all mentality. Every customer is different and has different needs and different perceptions. Companies need to start to understand this as an opportunity.
Here are 5 basic elements that should be present in any customer experience management strategy:
1 . Use each and every opportunity to ask for feedback.
Feedback is one of the most important mechanisms that should be implemented in every campaign and every touch point with the customers, to have it forwarded to the customer intelligence department later on. This process will help your company to continually learn based on individual conversations with your customers. Develop a self-learning system, which continuously collects customer data a analyzes them ongoing. This will lead to an optimized action / reaction capacity while conversing with your clients and allows your company to remain one step ahead of its competitors.
2 . Make each interaction special for each customer
Customization creates brand loyalty and lets customers come back, because they believe the company understands their needs. Further, it will help your company to use the personalized dialogue as a differentiation point while competing in the market. Using social media channels and the internet, companies today are in a better position than ever before, when it comes to establishing relevant and effective customers conversations. Offering personalized contents, on the basis of user behavior and preferences, yields higher customer engagement since it improves the customer reactions and intensifies the dialogues.
3 . Anticipate customers needs before they exist
Start communicating information about products that could potentially be interesting to customers, before the client has realized a necessity. This is perceived as a value add-on, since your company thinks ahead and helps the customer to make informed decisions. The most prominent example on the market currently is Amazon. The Amazon platform analyzes the customer behavior and offers intuitive purchase options, which not only increment revenue but user friendliness, as well.
4 . Convert negative experiences into positive ones
Oftentimes companies experience as state of panic if first signs of customer negativity start showing up. Obviously there are very good reasons to be concerned, since bad experiences tend to stick in people minds and could potentially result in harmful word of mouth.
However, this is as well a great marketing opportunity to get in touch with the customer and to exceed expectations in order to convert negative emotions into positive ones. Empower employees that are in contact with customers with sufficient authority to make it clear to customers that your company values the ongoing business relationship. Don´t underestimate, that with each customer you have, another brand advocate contributes positively by word of mouth to your companies overall brand perception, which is difficult to achieve with any other marketing technique.
5 . Reward your loyal customers
A good customer experience strategy is implemented when a company identifies brand advocates among its existing clients and rewards them. This group of people not only interacts more frequently with your brand, but also contributes more to the bottom line. As well, this group is the strongest promoter you have! Marketing Manager need to study brand advocates behavior patterns during interaction with the brand. This knowledge contributes to the design of sustainable customer loyalty and retention programs and establishment of positive word of mouth impact.
Companies that have implemented the above best customer experience practices have high chances of build up higher than average customer retention rates, enhanced competitiveness, higher profits and an excellent brand image.