Table of Contents
- What is customer experience management (CEM)?
- Tips for creating a better customer experience management strategy
Producing what you think is best for consumers — instead of what they actually demand — might have worked in the past, but it won’t work now. If we look at the fall of Nokia, we can understand why.
Nokia used to be a global leader in mobile phones in the late 1990s and early 2000s. The market was shifting towards smartphones, and Nokia didn’t want to adapt. Over time, their operating system became obsolete. Since they didn’t respond to their customers’ requests, they weren’t able to keep up with competition.
Today, customers have a myriad of options to choose from. Even if you’ve delivered 10 great experiences to a customer, a single bad experience can force them to try out your competitors. In order to survive, brands must deliver the best customer experience possible and inspire customer loyalty. In order to do that, you need to constantly innovate and exceed customer experience expectations. That’s where customer experience management comes in. Here’s how you can improve your customer experience management.
What is customer experience management (CEM)?
Customer Experience Management (CEM or CXM) is all about creating a positive perception of your business in the minds of your customers by delivering a stellar buying experience. When you understand your customers more, you can better anticipate their needs and offer personalized experiences that exceed their expectations.
Imagine visiting a hotel after a long flight. As you enter the room, it’s configured exactly the way you wanted it to be. This experience would inspire loyalty, right? Effective customer experience management helps generate repeat sales and turns your customers into evangelists who vouch for your business.
What’s the difference between customer experience management (CEM) and customer relationship management (CRM)?
Many businesses confuse CEM with CRM because they both deal with customer interactions. CEM aims to enrich your customers’ experience with your brand, while CRM aims to analyze your customer interactions, better understand their purchase patterns, and improve your revenue.
In a nutshell, customer experience management revolves around what the customers think about your brand. Customer relationship management, on the other hand, has to do with understanding your customers.
Here is a detailed comparison to help you understand the nuances of both terms.
Despite their differences, both CEM and CRM help you develop relationships with customers and encourage repeat purchases.
|Customer experience management (CEM)||Customer relationship management (CRM)|
|The purpose of CEM is to elevate customer experience and improve customer retention.||The purpose of CRM is to better understand customers to boost profitability.|
|CEM is qualitative in nature and focuses on improving the customer experience using insights from the CRM.||CRM is quantitative in nature and focuses on analyzing customer-related trends and statistics.|
|CEM tells you about customer shopping experience, concerns about brand, and more.||CRM tells you the average amount spent per order, preferred product categories, and more.|
|CEM is useful for business leaders and analysts.||CRM is useful for sales and customer success.|
|CEM helps create a better purchasing experience for your customers. It helps understand customer needs and feedback, and how you can improve.||CRM consolidates relevant customer information into a central database, making it easier for your team to access all customer-related information.|
Tips for creating a better customer experience management strategy
David Ogilvy rightly said, “Consumers do not buy products. They buy product benefits.” In other words, consumers buy experiences or emotional states instead of products.
Here are some tips to help you improve your overall customer experience management.
Understand your customers
To offer the best customer experience, it’s crucial to thoroughly understand your customers’ needs, expectations, aspirations, and more. This information will help you create relevant offers for them.
Creating customer profiles can help in better understanding your target customers. To create customer personas, you should include information about demographics, income, likes and preferences, buying habits, pain points, and more. Here’s a sample customer profile for your reference.
Map the customer journey
Creating a customer profile helps you understand your target customers better. Mapping the customer journey will help you visualize the steps that your customers take to purchase a product.
Your customers will go through several stages before they’re ready to purchase your product. At first, they will learn about your offer. Then they’ll consider whether they want to purchase it. Finally, they’ll take action. Here’s an illustration of a customer journey map for a person who wants to make a purchase.
Customer journey mapping helps you see all the touchpoints through which your customers can interact with your brand. Touchpoints can be divided into three categories:
Every touchpoint impacts the customer experience and is measurable. Once you have the necessary data, you can start to optimize it.
Whenever an employee leaves an organization, HR conducts an exit interview to understand what went wrong. If an organization was able to understand why they wanted to leave beforehand, they might have been able to rectify the issue before the employee quit.
The same is true for your customers. If brands proactively seek feedback from customers, they can take steps to improve customer experience and build loyalty. Thanks to modern technology, it’s possible to receive and analyze customers’ feedback quickly.
Customer feedback isn’t only crucial to improve current offers — it also helps when launching a new product. Let’s look at an example:
Yamaha, which is a company that offers musical instruments, was planning to launch a new keyboard. When building the design and functionality of the keyboard, the product team couldn’t decide where they should put knobs and sliders.
Businesses often use focus groups to discuss, debate, and offer product feedback. However, Yahama was running short on time and was running out of options. They were able to solve this problem by creating a quick survey and sending it to 100s of customers.
Ultimately, Yamaha learned that the best way to validate your product idea is through your customers. Decades ago, collecting this data might have taken months. Thanks to modern technology, Yamaha was able to collect the data in a matter of hours. It offered them clarity about how to make their new product.
You shouldn’t overlook the post-purchase experience of your customers, either. Once they buy your product, it’s your responsibility to send them a confirmation and regular updates about their shipment. A survey by Oracle suggests that 93% of the customers want to stay informed about their shipment status.
Be proactive with customer feedback
Collecting feedback is easier than ever. Other than surveys, you can use social media, online review websites, and even customer support conversations to better understand how your customers feel about your products.
Modern consumers are fickle about their brand preferences. If you gather feedback and fail to act upon it, your customers might move to another brand that can meet their expectations. Because of that, it’s important to consistently monitor KPIs associated with customer experience management and look for areas of improvement.
It’s more essential than ever to understand what customers really want, and then try your best to deliver that experience. When you do that, you’ll naturally offer an exceptional customer experience.
Customer experience management is key
Whether you operate on a B2B or B2C business model, your business ultimately relies on customers. You should take customer experience management seriously and strive to take a consumer-centric approach.
At the end of the day, that means producing what consumers want — instead of making a product and then trying to find customers who want it. Despite your good intentions, there’s often a discrepancy between the experience you think you’re delivering and the one that customers actually receive.
It’s important to collect data from your customers and use it to categorize, analyze, and understand them. You can then anticipate customer needs and deliver amazing customer experiences. When your customers are happy, your business is happy. Custom experience management is key — and happy customers are the ultimate win-win for both parties.
To learn more about winning customer experience strategies and how Cin7 Orderhive can support your efforts in this regard, schedule a call with one of our experts.
Simplifying complexity using words is my superpower. Being a Philomath, I love reading everything that I get my hands on and use writing to share my learnings. For me, writing is such a novel activity - it lets you experience the joy of being a student and teacher at the same time. Passionate about Marketing, Psychology, Philosophy, and binging TV shows.
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