Focusing on the Key Pillars of Customer Experience Management

Key pillars of customer experienceMarketers should focus on three pillars related to today’s Customer Experience Management (CEM): Listen, Learn, and Act.

That is according to Peter Oxley, Vice President Global Marketing, ResponseTek, who was the featured speaker during Thursday’s Loyalty360 webinar, “Time to Get Personal – Tips to Personalize Your Customer Journey.”

Oxley outlined the three pillars for effective CEM:

Make it easy for customers to share real-time feedback on key interactions wherever they occur – contact center, retail locations, field operations, web, or social.

Using proprietary analytics, we translate customer feedback into key performance metrics, and dashboards that inform the entire organization about mission-critical improvements.

Empower your frontline to close the loop with the end customer by triggering alerts and managing corrective actions that must be taken:

This is where the majority of company’s fail in the CEM initiatives

A staggering 71% of respondents say that their VoC program is not successful in driving action.

Only 29% of respondents said that their programs are fully or mostly effective in driving actions. However, it’s unclear as to whether they know this for sure because only 22% said that their programs are fully or mostly effective at tracking improvement projects.

CEM Personalization focuses on customers (Customer Feedback; Closing the Loop) and employees through:

Frontline Engagement

Performance Management

CEM personalization, Oxley explained, means tailoring the experience throughout the customer’s journey to get the most out of the data, insights, and actions made possible by a CEM platform:

To do this we need to focus on both the customers and the employees.

The focus on customers means how to apply personalization in getting the right feedback at the right time and how this impacts the customer issue resolution process.

The focus on employees is also a very important part of personalizing a CEM program because it drives frontline engagement and the effectiveness of coaching and training made possible with a CEM platform.

Effectively “listening” to customer feedback is crucial, Oxley told attendees.

Deliver the right survey, at the right time, to the right customer:

  • Right survey – Deliver surveys in the way that customers want to receive them/convenient (email, mobile, etc.). Also ask questions that are specific to the interaction – i.e. call center vs. retail store specific questions. This leads to ‘smart surveys’ which is the next slide.
  • Right time – Request feedback within a specific time of the transaction taking place – it’s personalized to their interaction (whether the ideal time is 30 min or 4 hours or 24 hours after the interaction depending on the product/service) –it’s still fresh in the customer’s mind. They’ll remember details of the interaction.
  • Right customer – Managing your customer sample to ensure the same customers are constantly being surveyed will ensure clear trends are obtained overtime.

“Smart” Surveys Use Logic & Branching

Many techniques and logic flows available to create smart surveys including:

  • “Smart” thank you page/greeting such as providing suggestions to improve future experience with the company based on issue discussed (i.e. long lineup during last experience). Also an opportunity for promotional messaging or offers.
  • Don’t treat a detractor as you would a promoter, as far as survey questions you would ask.
  • Simple messaging triggered when specific responses are given
  • For example, if a customer responds with “very dissatisfied” then the next question could start with an apology
  • Question triggered at the end of the survey to ask if the customer would like a representative to follow up with them

Regarding an omni-channel customer journey, Oxley said marketers need to “listen everywhere”:

  • An easy way to demonstrate value is by reaching out to customers at the right time across all the channels they are using to interact with you
  • Listen everywhere your customers are not only where you want to focus
  • Monitor all channels to identify the root cause of issues by moment of truth
  • Customer experience needs to be consistent across all channels for an effective CEM program – consistent view of the customer experience – across the entire journey
  • Which channels are they having issues with? They will not have the same expectation for service in all channels

Eliminate silos over time (Product/Channel)

Transforming a business with CEM Personalization encompasses the following:


  • Feedback across the Customer Journey
  • Pinpoint and Prioritize the Issue from a Customer’s Perspective
  • Share feedback across whole organization – right down to frontline
  • Keep Lender Communication On-Time:
    “The Sundown Clause”
  • Establish a Coaching System
  • Measure and Benchmark for Improvements over time
  • Create Survey Questions that Get Results: The bank developed and sent out survey questions specific to each moment of truth in the loan application journey. These questions ensured a personalized approach and an actionable solution for each individual customer every time they asked for help.
  • Keep Lender Communication On-Time: Lenders responded immediately to customers at the most critical moments of the loan application journey. They received automatically pushed email alerts that directed them to act on key customer issues (e.g. a customer does not intend to proceed with their application). Lenders then called customers to resolve issues and save their business as soon as possible — at the latest, by the end of the day. This was successfully branded as the “sundown clause.”
  • Empower Employees at all Levels: The platform allowed useful customer insights about complaints, compliments, and conversations to flow to all departments in the organization. The data accessibility allowed for improvements and recommendations throughout the customer experience value chain. Business could now take action on all customer experiences, and have accountability for their roles increasing engagement and commitment at all levels.
  • Establish a Coaching System: The email and SMS surveys responses were analyzed using the CEM platform so Line Managers could provide specific and meaningful coaching to Lenders.
  • Measure and Benchmark for Accuracy: The bank implemented a customer experience benchmark measurement process to accurately gauge company performance. Administered by the Listening Platform, these benchmark measurements were applied across three channels: satisfaction, customer effort and NPS/Advocacy.

Empower your employees by providing the tools, insights, and authority they need so they can do a better job, Oxley said:

  • Tools: Provide employees with the right systems to allow them to properly investigate customer’s experiences so when they talk to customers they can personalize their approach.
  • Insights: If your employees are given access to insight on customers they can better tailor their service to highlight features and services that actually matter to the customer.
  • Authority: Enable employees to solve issues in the moment for quick and efficient resolutions by providing each employee with a discretionary budget
  • This will improve communication between frontline and customers
  • The increased accountability will lead to improved performance through a sense of ownership

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