We believe passionately that improving customer experiences and customer engagement (getting more customers to enquire, buy and stay with you) all start with insight about their end-to-end customer journey.
There are four dimensions to customer journey insight, all are important.
A Client had assumed their failure to migrate business customers to digital channels was because their customers were old fashioned. In fact they were desperate to improve their own efficiency but either didn’t know about the alternatives or hadn’t been sufficiently trained how to use them.
First is an accurate understanding of the wider context. Common mistakes include issues like asking the wrong questions (unwittingly focusing on issues that are of secondary importance) and not understanding the big drivers behind observed behaviours.
We will often start a customer journey engagement with some very light touch ethnographic research to gain insights into the wider context and customer relationship. In this way we can make sure we focus in on the right issues later on and design solutions that are fit for purpose.
It is well understood that satisfaction is the combination of expectation compared to experience; this applies equally to customer journey. But many companies don’t properly understand customer expectations and fail to appreciate who their customers are comparing them to. If you don’t understand what customers expect it very difficult to know what to deliver or how to manage expectations.
We use a variety of different techniques including talking with customers and prospects immediately prior to an event, shadowing customers through and event, web usability (UX) and conjoint analysis (asking people to choose between alternative offerings or features).
With a proliferation of channels and touch-points it is often very difficult to see what the customer journey is and where the greatest opportunities lie to increase conversion and retention.
We use a mix of qualitative and quantitative techniques to capture the complexity of multi-channel behaviour but also to put numbers against behaviours. Without numbers it is impossible to build a business case or to choose where you should focus finite resources.
We work closely with internal teams to gain their understanding of customer behaviour and to that we add real-time service monitoring and benchmarking, web analytics, data analysis, shadowing and combine multiple internal reports to build up multi-channel customer journey maps. We then add research finding to this so companies can not only understand what customers do but how they feel at that point.
The final dimension is of course how customers feel about a particular experience and how that contributes to their overall experience and view of the company. Bringing these experience to life for companies is often a vital part of the work we do.
It is surprising easy for customers to be misunderstood by the staff who are trying to serve them, Disney World is a great example. Using video can be a really powerful way to get staff to understand how the things they do feel from the customer’s perspective and help support the need for change.
Showing is a particularly useful technique here because it allows us to capture nuances which might otherwise be lost. As well as qualitative measures Customer Effort score can be a particularly powerful metric and has proven to be more indicative of future purchase behaviour than customer satisfaction or Net Promoter Score.
A man with 3 children, a camera and candy floss staggers up to a Disney World host and asks “what time is the 3 o’clock Mickey Mouse parade?”
Disney trains its people to avoid the obvious, curt response and to see behind dumb questions like these. To understand that here is a stressed Dad trying to do the best for his kids. The model response they work toward is something like:
“The 3 o’clock Mickey Mouse parade starts in 10 minutes. He’ll be coming down that street over there and the place to get a great picture with the magic castle in the background is just by that vending machine.”
Our Insight services include:
- Creating a Customer Effort Score process either at a top-line company level or broken down by channel, centre, Agent, time of day and reported in real time if required.
- Ethnographic research
- Accompanied visits/shops/calls
- Focus groups
- Quantified customer journey mapping (path analysis)
- Web analytics
- Web usability (UX)
- Quantitative service tracking and benchmarking (customer satisfaction, customereffort score, call handling metrics etc)