Tag Archives: small ideas

Applying small Customer Experience improvements to your business to make a BIG impact

Driving a positive behavioural change in customers is the surest way to increase their sustainable contentment and commitment to your business. We’ve seen this achieved when programmes focus on what really matters most to the customers and the business delivers best.

Of course setting the companies CX compass correctly means understanding that Customer Performance measures will mean for the business. For instance, no CFO worth their Masters degree in Economics is going to thank you for delivering a sparkly green looking dashboard showing industry leading promoter scores or top box customer satisfaction if they don’t correlate with profitability.

CEO’s are waking up to (or more often walking into) this reality in their business. If this sounds familiar, then efforts should be diverted to improving the customer performance measures to reflect efforts on CX which drive business profitability. In a study by Prof. Dr Phil Klaus, amongst companies who drive 600% ROI from their CX programmes, effective CX measurement was the No.1 contributing factor for success.

If you’d like to know more on this contact Christopher Brooks and reference 600% ROI.

If you are chartering the correct course, then it’s worth remembering that results from CX take time. So keeping stakeholders’ engagement and belief in CX is key. To do this we recommend small ideas which deliver a big impact (siBI).

I was speaking to a regular on the CX speaker circuit recently who said, ‘We do this all the time. We are always fixing stuff so it works for customers’. Beware, there is a clear distinction between improvements which reaffirm consumer’s choice of a brand versus ‘fixing stuff that was broken’. Not all realise this. However, ROI on ‘operational’ style fixes typically delivers only 125%; 4 times less effective than the vanguards achieve with branded experience.

nationwide2Here are 3 examples of small ideas which I feel demonstrate, in a small way, what the brand is trying to stand for through an enhanced experience.

Nationwide, a more considerate and caring building society takes the opportunity to ensure there is no mess left in the community from its cash machines.

It’s something all could do, but those who don’t have it in their DNA don’t.

I counted 4 other banks on our high street without this simple experience set up.

travellodge2Travelogical is the message from Travel Lodge. And this is a simple demonstration of logic. A basket of basic supplies which if you are so inclined you can take.

This not only reduces the effort and cost of staff dealing with customers requesting tea bags and sugar sachets, but it makes the budget hotel chain appear more generous than those perceived more premium.

Disneyland Paris in comparison provide a tea bag and coffee sachet per customer, per stay.

whopper2Finally, I saw this on a Burger King wrapper at Barcelona airport. Fast food chains have worked hard to demonstrate authentic and natural ingredients. What better way of stating it than on the wrapper from which is eaten. But actually stating it could backfire and have customers thinking why say it if you’ve got nothing to hide? So by making it part of the ‘what ingredients are in excluded from the order’, it allows the selection of natural ingredients which go in to make up the burger meal laid bare without stating them. Smart, simple and small.

They all share the ‘small’ in terms of investment as well as the ‘BIG’ in terms of demonstration of brand values. It’s that simple. Whilst they won’t achieve, ‘jump off the page’ unprompted positive verbatim they can be shared around the business as examples of quick, brand reaffirming experiences delivered for relatively little. Small ideas delivering Big Improvements.

Lexden helps deliver Customer Experience Strategy and Management for clients seeking sustainable profit from customer experience.

If you like what you’ve read please sign-up to Lexden’s ‘Customer’s World’ Update for ideas, inspiration and insights to improve your customer strategy endeavours. 

For further information on how we can help with your customer challenges contact christopherbrooks@lexdengroup.com or call M: +44 (0) 7968 316548 or T: +44 (0)1279 902205.  You can also follow us on LinkedIn, Facebook or Twitter or read client testimonials and case studies at www.lexdengroup.com.

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Unordinary Thinking No. 41 – Cash in on childish complaints

We work with clients who are looking to improve the experience they provide their customers. Some are well on their journey and are looking to ensure their ‘branded experience’ creates differentiation from their competitors. Others are on the start of their journey having recognised that increased satisfied customers lead to sustainable revenues at a lower cost margin.

With these different stages of customer centricity in mind, it is important to match the resource types you employ to steer and deliver improvements to the stage you are at. Ops folk are great at fixing broken process (reducing detractors), but marketers have some advantage when it comes to building a differentiated experience (increase promoters).

But whatever stage of maturity your CX programme is at, it pays to always keep an eye open for those rare little gems that can give a boost to your programme by reminding everyone just how easy it can be to create warmth towards your brand. Which as we know encourages consideration for those in the market.

And there’s no better place to start than among the Voice of The Customer feedback to look for the fun you can generate from complaints. Unordinary Thinking indeed as it’s not something for the legally constrained in thinking. Which is why we recommend letting the content marketers and your brand experts trawl through what they can find. They will find opportunity in the feedback where others find cause for concern. Not forgetting resolution is a key customer attribute so that part of any dissatisfied customer feedback found will still always need attention.

wbac letter

Making fun of a complaint

We came across this example of such an opportunity at a recent customer experience conference when it was presented as a classic case of the brand putting business policy before brand personality. It’s a complaint from a customer who asked webuyanycar.com for a valuation on their child’s Little Tyke car. It fell in the wrong hands first time round with a snooty response requesting the enquirer to not waste the businesses time which soon found it’s way on to the internet.

But that meant it appeared in someone else’s feedback pot at WBAC and this time the customer centric thinking employee responded with a sense of the spirit that the brand can convey. The outcome (which should have been presented first time around)…..webuyanytoycar.com was born. For a few ‘shillings’ (looking at the website it would be surprising if it cost more than that) they’ve trying to get a big impact from a small idea, a complaint in fact. The promise was to buy 1000 toy cars for £10 each and then rehouse them at hospitals, hospices and homes where they would be much appreciated; a charitable response. It highlights what a little unordinary thinking can achieve when you take negative news and add a little personality. Even if you are a second hand car sales brand. The content allows consumers another way in to the brand and the execution helps improve a positive association with the brand which leads to higher levels of consideration – all good news for the ‘sales’ funnel.

wbatc

These opportunities land in the inbox and in tray of companies every week. The trick is to see the opportunity that exists within them and to accept the time taken to make them a reality is still an investment into the customer.

There’s a great saying attributed to Mary Angelou, poet and leading figure in the American Civil Rights Movement, “I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel”. Which if that means my positive emotional response replaces the still lingering negative bilious feeling I had when I first saw the old ad campaign, I will be very grateful!

wbac

Another opportunity to cash in on a complaint

I have found a similar opportunity on a Facebook feed which is a reference posted by a chap who is organising a trip to the world children’s choir championship for his choir. But he had so much trouble trying to block book 70 flights with a low cost airline brand they nearly didn’t get there. He’s promised to feature the brand in his press release which is due to follow the finals. Can the brand turn this around? Absolutely. And the marketers among you probably have some ideas forming around what you would do. 

So I will track this and see how it plays out. Ideally with a story featuring the brand turning the complaint (from a customer who has bought over 70 products in one hit) into a good customer experience, PT opportunity and shows a reignited warmth to their brand. In the meantime, revisit your own VoC to find fun, positive association and preference for you brand. I assure you great opportunities lie within it. Of course we could find it for you, but there’s more commitment behind these things when you find them yourself. By all means contact us to help make the most of it. Happy customer feedback hunting.   

Posted by Christopher Brooks

Lexden is a Customer Strategy Agency | We put customers at the start and the heart of marketing strategy

We work with brands to attract and retain happy customers | We achieve this by helping them to understand what makes their customers tick, building memorable customer experience strategies and creating engaging customer value propositions.

If you like what you’ve read sign-up to our free monthly ‘Putting Customers First’ newsletter. Or for a discussion on how we may be able to help you, contact christopherbrooks@lexdengroup.com or call us on M: +44 (0) 7968 316548 You can also follow us on LinkedIn Facebook and Twitter @consultingchris

Customer-centric thinking at its best, we believe

At Lexden, we spend our time on various customer strategy commissions across Europe and occasionally further afield. Whilst we are engaged in a project we are thinking ‘customer first’. But when we are not running a live project we are still thinking ‘customer first’. That’s our business so it keeps us fresh and up to date. The truth is we are always thinking ‘customer first’.

newBy looking at the world this way we sometimes come across brand new propositions which are outstanding. Ideas which are brilliantly simple and simply brilliant.

Often the client isn’t aware that the perfect solution is out there and because the solution provider hasn’t positioned it in a way that it chimes with the clients requirements they don’t see how it’s the right solution.

But we live in two worlds; 1. the client side world thinking about customers and their emotional and rational needs and 2. The consumers world thinking about how brands can make lives better by fulfilling emotional drivers. This means we can see how to connect innovations and product ideas from one market to client needs in another.

We are always hunting down small ideas which have a big impact as per our recent blog. Those which cause the least disruption to a business stand the greatest chance of actually getting to market.

That’s why we’re are rather excited about our latest finding. It’s simplicity is brilliant and it’s potential has stunned us, and that’s not easy.

We’ve come across a NEW customer experience concept that answers so many of the client requirements we come across on assignment. This idea is up there with the best of them and we anticipate it will revolutionise some clients business models. Reassuringly the developer has a global track record of success too.

If you are the CEO, CFO, in customer experience, e-commerce, marketing strategy and planning, customer insight, customer services or brand, you will find this idea really interesting.

You’ll know straight away if it’s something you should look at if you are tackling any of these issues at the moment:

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“(1) We need to reduce our call volumes down because our (2) cost to serve is too high (3) our quality of call resolution is impaired or (4) our call waiting times are unacceptable.

“(5) But we need to achieve this and increase our customer satisfaction scores at the same time. Our customers are leaving because they can’t get hold of us”

Beyond this there are a host of further benefits to a business improving its customer strategies it provides…

“(6) When we have unresolved queries from customers we are unable to effectively or efficiently get a resolution back to them meaning that often they remain unresolved even though we have an answer or it costs us heavily to set up a ‘work around’ to contact them and resolve their query”

“(7) We are unable to move between channels as quickly as our customers choose to and we are not able to keep an up to date record of the conversation between channel either which annoys our customers, makes us looks stupid and costs us in duplicated effort time”

“(8) Depending who a customer contacts in our business, through which channel and on which day will determine what answer they get back. It’s this inconsistency that means we end up spending money dealing with ‘over promises’ and ‘under deliver’. We upset customers as we’ve let them down which then impacts CSAT scores and retention rates”

“(9) We’ve got some really good customer service people and some less good ones. If we could bottle the good ones and deliver that experience to customers we would be market leaders, but it’s impossible isn’t it?”

“(10) When we close at the end of the day, there is no way of helping customers beyond what they find on our website. Because we have no ‘night shift equivalent’ we offer to resolve their basic or more complex needs they leave us for our competitors who do. But we haven’t found a cost effective alternative which would be accepted by customers”

“We are looking for more customers to self-serve online to reduce servicing costs but the truth is (11) the experience online isn’t as good as it needs to be at the moment or (12) even if it was great (or on a mobile app) many of our customers would still want to talk to someone to get the answers they can get online. It’s just how they are”

“(13) We are unable to control the quality or the consistency of the way the brand is presented when customers interact with the company. It’s fine when it’s presented in an ad or through a mail pack, but as soon as it becomes ‘personalised’, such as the call centre, it becomes unpredictable and inconsistent”

“(14) Our customer feedback tools are disparate and provide conflicting insights which we have to work through and interpret. (15) Whilst they can inform what the issues are and what is irritating customers they can’t provide planning intelligence such as which products are most effective to cross sell to which segments at which point in the journey or what products are trending with our customers at the moment and why”

“(16) We are in a commoditised service market where brand and experience are the most important driver of relationship, we need an innovative USP that could give us the competitive edge”

“(17) I need to reduce my call centre costs overnight but wont be able to switch off the calls”

If you could relate to more than one of these issues it’s worth taking a look at this solution. But if you are looking to reduce call volumes and improve you customer experience at the same time then bingo – it’s well worth an hour to take a look.

Solutions to these challenges can actually all be delivered through one platform and be operational within a few weeks.

If you know us at Lexden, you will know we are only interested in customer centric solutions that are commercially advantageous to our clients. That’s where we fit in? Lexden have partnered with the innovator to pioneer this new concept into market as an advancement in personalisation, presentation and performance for the customer experience industry.

Sorry but we are not revealing anything more unless we know you are interested. So if you’d like meet up to learn more and how it can relate it to your requirements, email me christopherbrooks@lexdengroup.com. Sector exclusive deals will be considered.

Lexden is a Customer Strategy Agency. We put customers at the start and the heart of the business strategy.

We work with brands to attract and retain happy customers. We achieve this by helping them to understand what makes their customers tick, building memorable customer experience strategies and creating engaging customer value propositions.

If you like what you’ve read sign-up to our ‘Putting Customers First’ Lexden newsletter.

For more information about how we can help you take your customer strategy forward please contact christopherbrooks@lexdengroup.com or call us on M: +44 (0) 7968 316548. You can follow us on LinkedIn Facebook and Twitter @consultingchris.