The world of customer experience is changing fast. Customers’ success and satisfaction are turning into the main KPIs of our business. In Gartners’ research on customer experience, 89% of respondents claimed that customer experience will be their primary differentiator by 2017. However, less than one half stated they are currently more successful than their competition at this stage.
So there is still a long way to go, especially in our world of Saas and B2B. There is still a strategic gap in perception. It usually lies somewhere between the notion that customer experience is about a product uptake, and its’ usage.
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Today, customer success in B2B companies focuses mainly on how to best implement and use the vendors’ product: set-ups, features, APIs, workflows, integrations, and analytics. Some add the human touch with personal success stories and case studies as well. Mainly, to help their customers relate with the challenges that others have faced and overcame. There are some companies who have taken the extra mile and provide more content about how to make their personas shine. Usually, again, very product focused.
However, those who want to turn their customer experience into a real differentiator, usually aim at putting the company in the center of the ecosystem it operates in. They give the users more insights on what can help them shine. In more ways than just best using their product and platform. The basic example is, how platforms for building web sites offer more content about SEO, E-Commerce and PPC. Sometimes even templates and tricks.
Customer experience as a business goal
The fast growing companies have already begun to acknowledge this fact. At Faastr, we hear some of our customers say they want to be ‘the go to place for…‘. We help them understand ‘what for’, and make it happen.
One of our customers, a large company in the Voice of Customer and Customer Experience Analytics field had a double challenge: the first one was to make every launch a winning case study, and the second – to overcome the noise in this crowded field, while being a relatively new player in the market.
Their hungry customer success team decided to go for gold and build CX Intensive: the hands on customer experience academy which provides each customer the most relevant experience, based on an initial online assessment they run to determine each customers’ needs. This go to place for customer experience experts that helps them become an outstanding CX persona, achieve the best launch, and motivate the whole organization with marketing campaigns we actually created for them. All this based on initial online assessments. CX Intensive provides them with tools, templates and kits (even marketing campaign kits) to help them do their job.
Integrate customer experience in your company
The good news is that whether you are either product or experience focused, you care about your customers and are doing your best to make them happy. Even better news is that you can easily hop on the wagon of turning customer success into a successful experience. Start with these questions and steps:
Ask what will make your persona happy? Not in terms of what YOUR product offers them, but rather think of 3 things that they do day in and day out. Out of these find the one most relevant to the ecosystem you are operating in and work your way into building an experiential hub.
Start with the basics. One of our methodologies and tool kits is based on the ‘4 stages of competence learning model’. Let’s start with the easiest stage: focus on customers who know how to get the job done but it still requires effort. Give them some simple tools to help them do their job better. Easily. For example, a 5 slide template to help them present the work they have done and achieved thanks to your product.
Master your customers journey.
Not the one that gets them to purchase your product or even use it. Rather the psychological journey your customer takes before and after using your solution. What triggers them to use your product? Focus on that trigger and offer more insights and tools to make them shine at that point. For example, one of our customers offers storage and archiving solutions. Our persona – IT managers. One of the journeys we addressed was what happens when the internal customers need to access the data that is stored and to approach IT. We made the IT managers become a partner and a resource internally. Not just for the ‘grey’ storage, but for research and data. Imagine the experience: IT managers that are now even more appreciated and needed.