Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Customer Experience Management Part II

A while ago in this blog, we discussed one of the trending topics in the CRM field, Customer Experience Management (CEM). As stated, CEM intentionally tries to direct the experiences of a customer or prospect across all touch points with your company.

CEM and CRM are strongly related and may well be in the same area of expertise. CRM aims to service the customer in the most efficient way. CEM emphasizes on the view of the customer. How does the customer or prospect experience our service and sales offerings and, in general terms, our company? In other words, the outside-in view.

Touchpoint analysis

That is the theoretical part, but we would like to see if a CEM based strategy can be translated into practical solutions. As a first step, we should analyze the touchpoints with our customers. A customer touch point refers to an interaction with a customer where we categorize this interaction in terms of channel (which communication channel has been used?), stakeholder (which internal of related external stakeholder has communicated with the customer?) and optionally the customer life cycle (what is the maturity phase of the relation with the customer?).

The first step in the touch point analysis is listing the individual touchpoints. One can choose for an overall corporate touchpoint analysis or start smaller by listing the touchpoint per process (sales/marketing/service), region, division, product group or customer group.


Three sample touchpoints are listed in this picture:

  1. A prospect or customer in the awareness phase visits our internet site where the marketing department has published the relevant product information;
  2. A prospect or customer in the product selection phase has a face-to-face meeting with the accountmanager in our sales force team;
  3. A long time customer (being an advocate of our sales or service offerings) posts a social media message with a comment on the performance of our service desk.

Assuming that the list of relevant customer touchpoints has been identified, the next step would be to score the individual touch points. In other words, how good or bad is our performance per touchpoint? Following the CEM approach, we should not determine these scores ourselves in terms of volume, average handling time or efficiency, but we ask our customers to rate our performance.

Net Promotor Score 

At the end of a customer interaction on a selected touchpoint, we will start asking our customer to score us. Either directly or by a subsequent email. A nice way to get a score is to introduce the Net Promotor Score (NPS). The NPS is a customer loyalty metric that is widely used and can be compared to industry standards.
The NPS is based on a single, direct question: How likely are you to recommend our company, product or service to your friends and colleagues? The scoring for this answer is based on a 0 to 10 scale.


The NPS is calculated by subtracting the percentage of customers who are Detractors (score 0-6) from the percentage of customers who are Promoters (score 9-10). The resulting NPS can be compared to other touchpoints within our company, but also to our competitors in the same line of business.

Next step: The customer journey

Combining all the touchpoints and their scores can be visualized in a customer journey. Improving the customer experience , reflected by a better NPS, will require the optimization of the individual touchpoints. Even better, optimizing the touchpoints should be part of a integrated plan to get a consistent experience on the overall customer journey. The customer journey and the optimization of the touchpoints will be covered in a later blog about CEM.

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