Family with sparklers celebrating New Years Eve

Ring in the New Year & Make Customer Experiences Forgettable (in a good way)

 
Is “improve customer experience” one of your company’s goals for 2024?

If so, your internal teams may be brainstorming ways to dazzle your customers. While “wow!” experiences are nice, delighting customers doesn’t build loyalty. Making it easier for them to solve their problems does.

To improve customer experience (CX) and bolster loyalty, focus on delivering journeys that are so quick and easy, they are soon forgotten.

Out With the Old: Unforgettable Experiences in 2023

Consider these negative memorable interactions that CSG employees experienced in 2023:

Telco: Taking advantage of a cellular promotion to add a line and get a free phone was far from easy for Erin. The first phone was sent to the wrong address, and the second phone didn’t have the correct phone number ported in. After spending two hours on the phone with customer support and sales, repeating the problem several times, Erin went to the store to pick up phone number three. When the phone still didn’t activate after 24 hours, she was forced to call customer support again. This time the call was escalated to a more intensive level of support and the problem was resolved in five minutes.

Retail: Danielle was surprised (not in a good way) to receive an email promoting a pair of jeans—the same ones she had purchased the day before. A few weeks later, she was asked to complete a survey for another product (not the jeans) that she had already returned. While these situations weren’t stressful, they revealed that the brands did not know Danielle, and those memories stayed with her.

Financial banking: Beth called her bank to request that money that had been refunded to her credit card be transferred to her checking account. After hearing that it would take 30 days to “investigate” her request, Beth asked for and was promised expedited service. She was told that an email confirmation wasn’t possible, but that she would be notified when the money was transferred. When Beth checked her online bank statement 10 days later, she discovered that the money had been transferred but she never received a notification. That was not a trust-inspiring situation.

Insurance: Frankie needed to submit a claim for a minor roof leak after a winter storm. She had to wait in queue to submit the claim via telephone and did not receive any type of digital confirmation on the claim or status updates. When she needed to check on the claim a few weeks later, she was forced once again to wait on hold to contact an agent that she had to re-explain the situation to. This was not a frictionless experience.

Why should CX teams prioritize preventing unforgettable, negative experiences?

Negative memories last longer than positive ones because they’re often associated with high-stress situations. This means negative interactions have more impact on how customers perceive your brand. However, these negative experiences often pop up along the customer journey where there is very little focus from the marketing and customer experience teams.

Negative interactions with a brand jeopardize customer loyalty. In fact, even a single bad experience can be enough to send customers packing. According to the PwC Customer Loyalty Survey 2022, 32% of consumers said they stopped using or buying from a business after a bad experience with customer service—almost as many who left after a negative experience with products or services (37%).

Customer retention also helps your bottom line as retaining customers is cheaper and provides more of a long-term gain than acquisition. The probability of selling to a new customer is only between 5 to 20%, whereas selling to an existing customer falls between 60 to 70%. Focusing on negative customer experiences can be the kick start your business needs to reduce their churn rate.

How is it that these negative experiences go unnoticed by so many businesses? Customer journeys are typically complex, difficult to change, and involve departments that would otherwise be focused on short-term revenue gains. Addressing these challenges requires a cross-functional approach that focuses on building intelligent and proactive experiences, that span across the entire customer journey.

In With the New: Forgettable Experiences in 2024

Customer journey orchestration (CJO) would have prevented those negative customer experiences. CJO leverages otherwise-siloed customer data, real-time decisioning, and channel activation to deliver effortless, empathy-driven experiences that meet your customers at their time of need and on the channel they prefer.

Customer journey orchestration powers every day, forgettable experiences, such as when:

  • Submitting an insurance claim with digital, timely updates on how a claim is being processed
  • Proactively providing guidance so call center agents understand the intent of the call before customers must re-tell their story
  • Delivering appointment reminders (e.g., including the clinic address)
  • Sending payment reminders before a bill becomes late or is sent to collections
  • Providing proactive alerts about suspicious activity on a customer’s account
  • Relating information about expected service outage notifications
  • Reporting missing or undelivered products via digital channels
  • Refraining from sending a survey to someone who returned the purchased item

CJO Infographic

By pointing the focus to these otherwise forgotten journeys in 2024, businesses can proactively provide a more seamless and hyper-personalized experience, fostering customer satisfaction and long-term loyalty in highly competitive industries.

Ring in the new year with CSG Xponent.

CSG has the experience and expertise to combat challenges the operational side of CX faces when customer loyalty is on the line. With award-winning journey orchestration capabilities that drive better business results, CSG unapologetically supports the journeys that seem forgettable but impact CX the most.

CSG Xponent Ignite provides pre-built journeys (such as plan switching and payments capabilities) that create emotional connections with customers in their time of need. The foundation for this is CSG Xponent, our customer engagement platform that combines journey orchestration with a customer data platform and journey analytics.

Gene Culbertson

Sales Director, CX, Financial Services