Building a Customer-First Culture
At Infused Innovations, we strive to be not only security-first but customer-first as well. It’s at the core of our company values—and great customer experience is becoming more crucial for business in general. 86% of customers will pay more for a better experience, and 88% of companies are now prioritizing CX, as it’s sometimes called for short. So it’s no surprise that customer experience leaders are valuable resources for organizations. But orienting the business toward customers shouldn’t stop with them. Building a customer-first culture means making the whole team CX-minded. How can an organization effectively do this? Here are some tips for your team members to keep in mind.
Listen to Your Customers
This goes without saying, but it’s worth a reminder that every customer is unique and has a particular set of needs. If your customers run organizations themselves, they may have a great deal of aspects to consider when purchasing your product or choosing to work with you. Listening to what they’re looking for (and what may be frustrating them) with genuine interest will help you get to know them and better understand how you can serve them. Those in the organization who work directly with customers should communicate with others on the team so that everyone is doing their job through the lens of the customers’ thoughts.
Keep Track of Customer Feedback & Analytics
The next part of listening is keeping tabs on what your customers want. With a large customer base, this may be a big task. One option to consider is using something like Extract, Transform and Load (ETL) tools. This is a process of extracting and streamlining data from customer interactions and creating a database that you can refer to. Doing so provides a comprehensive view of who your customers are and what they want.
Tailor Responses to Customers’ Needs
Molly Schuh, a CX leader based in Boston, highlights the importance of matching the correct recovery (or response to a customer’s complaints) to a given problem. If someone is frustrated about time lost, a simple refund may not be the best answer. Asking the customer what they’d like to happen is an obvious strategy here, but sometimes reading between the lines or thinking creatively may also be necessary. It can help to take a step back and consider the long-term customer goals rather than a simple short-term fix.
Create Front-of-the-Line Experiences
Another idea that Schuh mentions is giving customers a “front-of-the-line” experience to make up for difficulties they may have encountered. Likening a customer’s experience to a trip to an amusement park, she aims to treat customers to the equivalent of being able to skip the line for a roller coaster ride. Of course, everyday work situations won’t be quite the same thrill, but they can please the customer in a similar way. Companies need to think about what “front-of-the-line” would mean in their specific contexts, and aim for that level of satisfaction in customers.
Make Your Website Easy and Enjoyable to Navigate
By now customers are accustomed to attractive, easy-to-use websites. So if they do encounter snags, slow-downs, or an unappealing interface, they are likely to be turned away. A majority of surveyed customers will associate a bad website experience with a lower opinion of the company and be less likely to engage with them. Over 55% of internet traffic now happens over mobile devices, so it’s important to make your website mobile-friendly too.
Engage Throughout the Customer Journey
As the consulting firm McKinsey & Company advises, it’s helpful to reframe your customer interactions from individual touchpoints to journeys. Business outcomes are shown to be more correlated to a customer’s overall journey than from any specific touchpoints. This means thinking long-term and making sure to engage with customers across the life cycle of their relationship with you. Continuing to engage even after a purchase is finished creates lasting relationships rather than short, transactional ones.
Customer-First Vision: Your Customers’ Success is Your Success
At the heart of great customer experience and relationships is understanding that your customers’ success is your own success. Doing all you can to meet their needs—which includes innovating as those needs evolve—will reflect back to you in a continuous, mutually beneficial exchange.
These long-term customer partnerships which bolster one another’s achievements are what we focus on here at Infused Innovations. We are always strategically reviewing roadmaps of our customers’ long-term needs and goals. This approach on building relationships is becoming more and more critical in today’s world. In particular, our collective journey over the past year and a half have allowed us to see our customers as people more than ever. We’ve greeted each other’s kids and pets over video calls and laughed together about unexpected interruptions. It’s been a great reminder that our customers, like us, are individuals whose lives extend beyond work. When we help them reach their goals we’re reaching ours as well. And when their lives are better, so are ours.
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