Customer Experience (CX) is the sum of all the individual experiences a customer has with your brand, product or company over time. It starts with a customer reconciling past experiences alongside present day needs before deciding to move forward with an organization. Understanding the various stages of consumer’s behavioral patterns will equip you to deliver a powerful experience that will increase brand recall rate and move your business further towards brand euphoria.
We’re no longer living in a commodity based world. Today, it’s all about the experience economy. In order for organizations to stay relevant and competitive, there must be continual innovation on the customer’s experience. In maintaining a laser focus on the context in which consumers relate to the world, organizations can turn buyers into brand ambassadors, moving their customers deeper into the bow tie funnel.
The shift to a digital, globalized marketplace has revolutionized the way consumers interact with organizations today. Customers have never been more empowered to make purchase decisions. That shift in power from retailers to consumers has created a distinct need for businesses to answer the call of the customer through a wide scope of elements including social media, eCommerce, CRO, UX/UI, Big Data, and many, many other transformational initiatives. Organizations that fail to grasp this fundamental change face detrimental consequences to the brand.
If there’s one thing digital transformation cannot change, it’s this — the need for businesses to woo customers at every single touchpoint in their journey. Understanding the modern customer journey funnel empowers organizations to deliver sublime experiences at every stage of the buyer’s journey. Rather than looking at this funnel through the perspective of the organization, businesses must start looking at it through the buyer’s point of view. In doing so, the organization can shed antiquated thought patterns and serve their buyers throughout the entirety of the customer experience.
A customer experience is triggered across the two main parts of the brain — the limbic system, where emotional responses are felt, and the neocortex, where logical solutions are found. By understanding how the customer feels and thinks throughout the path-to-purchase and path-to-loyalty, you’re better able to deliver an experience that increases the LTV of the buyer.
The Customer Experience (CX) part of the StoryVesting framework honors this natural and predictable movement by a customer when working with an organization. Here’s how it ebbs and flows together:
The path-to-purchase is kickstarted in the limbic system when a customer’s heart strings are tugged by an external stimulus. This emotional response can sometimes be accompanied by a physical reaction, such as sweating palms, increased heart rate or widening of the eyes.
Once the customer is drawn emotionally to a stimulus, they start to examine whether that external stimulus is relevant to their current situation. They move to analysis mode, thinking through how it aligns with their current lifestyle and needs.
When the person is close to making the decision of whether to purchase or continue with a business, the potential buyer is analyzing how well that business will meet their expectations. Will the end experience align with what they want emotionally and need on a logical level?
If a person deems that stimulus as relevant, the next step in their logical decision-making process is to decide if the buying process is worth the time and effort.
When deciding whether or not to work with an organization, the customer weighs how much they trust the brand. They consider their cognitive associations of the brand, taking into account any dissonance between the brand and their personal beliefs. That level of trust determines how they will experience the brand’s deliverables and whether or not they will buy from the organization.
Ultimately, the past, present and future are reconciled into one experience that fills the buyer with euphoria, remorse or another emotion inbetween. When the consumer walks away from the purchase, they will feel hopeful, anxious, confident, excited or another anticipatory emotion relating to what the future holds with that product or service.
Modern consumers don’t go easy on brands. The heightened expectation for sublime experiences from organizations of all sizes and at every interaction means businesses must up their game in order to stay competitive in today’s modern ecosystem.
Leading brands are changing the competitive landscape through the customer experience by setting new standards, and leveraging sophisticated customer insights and analytics. By leveraging predictive technologies to deliver more personalized recommendations, large organizations can automate the personalization of the digital and in-person experience. As a result, these leaders are able to successfully build anticipatory services instead of reactive ones, smoothing and refining the end user’s experience with the brand.
Meeting the customer at just the right time with just the right deliverable only happens through sophisticated strategy and intelligent operations. Cultivating meaningful relationships and insights across the path-to-purchase and path-to-loyalty expands the modern customer journey and offers new opportunities for organizations to strengthen their place in the market.
Forethought and analytical rigor are required in order for organizations to deliver best-in-class customer experiences. Layering intelligent operations to combine systems and optimize front and back end operations empowers organizations to develop these experiences faster without the sole burden falling on the data department.
As the skill gap widens, organizations must hire V-shaped teams and train their current workforce to operate beyond the traditional scope. By building a pool of talent that will equip an organization to operate more intelligently, organizations can better capture customer attention and catalyze innovation to deliver better experiences.
Modern consumers have shifted their purchase behavior. Organizations must transform swiftly and consistently alongside these new patterns in order to continuously deliver a magnetic customer experience. By understanding how to leverage technology, meet consumer desires and create smoother processes, businesses are able to transform alongside today’s buyer.
Automating the customer experience is crucial towards gleaning the critical insights needed to maintain a competitive advantage. Leveraging machine learning and artificial intelligence will empower and equip organizations to increase customer LTV by reducing attrition through creating a more desirable customer experience.
Take the first step in unlocking your growth potential by scheduling a complimentary discovery call with our EVP Tom Jones. This introduction will better help us understand your pain points as you explore new data-driven strategies and uncover hidden growth opportunities.