It’s a strange fact: Even in the most transactional business interactions, your customers can’t help but form a personal relationship with your company.
Every interaction your customers have with your brand—from online ads that pique their curiosity to post-purchase customer service calls—contribute to an overall impression of your company and its values. And the stronger the relationship between the customer and the company, the more loyal those customers tend to be.
It isn’t always easy to create a consistent customer experience (CX) that meets these expectations. Let’s take a look at seven ways your company can use marketing and technology to dramatically improve the CX.
Chances are that your company already collects a lot of data about its prospects and customers. For instance, you probably know which marketing channels are responsible for delivering the most valuable customers to your sales funnel. You might even have fairly reliable breakdowns of each customer segment (according to their primary marketing channels), which help shape your overall marketing strategy.
However, you probably aren’t using this marketing and customer data to help you understand the CX. If you dig around a little, you may find that a prime segment from Instagram isn’t converting at a very high rate.
Why? Maybe your website doesn’t work very well on mobile, which is a problem for someone browsing Instagram on their iPhone. While this problem is easy to fix, it’s also one you’d only notice by actively examining the CX.
The ultimate goal of CX marketing is to create a 360-degree view of your customers, which allows you to create a strong personal connection with them. This outcome isn’t possible if your best customer insights are hidden away in data silos. To improve the CX, you need to bring all that customer data together in one place.
A number of specialized tools can help with this process, such as social listening software, live-chat customer support, and AI-driven media insights. So it’s worth looking into all the options that fall within your budget. Another extremely useful tool is your company’s customer relationship management (CRM) platform, as it already stores a treasure trove of invaluable CX-related data.
When was the last time your marketing leadership actually picked up the phone and talked to one of your current customers? Odds are it’s been a while.
Most marketers don’t really have a good reason to directly interact with customers. If they have a problem, they usually talk with sales reps or customer support. As a result, it’s surprisingly common for marketers to have an outdated perspective about the overall CX.
By talking to your customers (both current and former), much of the guesswork can be taken out of the CX-improvement process. In most cases, these customers will be more than happy to discuss their experiences involving your marketing strategy, social media efforts, website path-to-purchase design, and other important CX elements.
Social media marketing tends to favor companies with strong brand personalities. Customers are often won over by this kind of marketing, which creates surprisingly strong connections with these company personas.
Apple and Tesla are prime examples of this approach. But while this marketing strategy is powerful, it can create a strong backlash if your brand personality doesn’t align with all your sales and marketing channels. Even something as simple as keeping your brand’s color palette consistent can have a huge impact on the CX.
Building a strong CX marketing strategy means meeting CX across all your channels. Companies that have mastered the art of creating a seamless CX regularly report higher levels of customer loyalty and greater reach, as well as exceptional satisfaction rates. And these benefits typically translate into greater long-term profitability.
Your company’s reputation is one of its most valuable resources. If people like your products and services, they tend to share their opinions with their communities, including other potential customers. Of course, a customer’s opinion isn’t set in stone after they buy something from you. An equally important part of their CX involves the way you treat them after you already have their money.
Great customer support should be an essential component of your company’s CX strategy. When combined with CRM, customer support allows you to gather detailed customer data. This support can also allow your company to fix serious problems before they take on lives of their own. For instance, you can put a stop to something before it goes viral on social media. Essentially, CX is a marketing channel that gives you an additional level of control over customer churn, brand loyalty, and overall sentiment.
How does a customer’s experience with your brand change after he or she buys something from you? Do you follow up by sending each customer a satisfaction survey? Do your sales reps check in to see if your products or services are living up to each customer’s expectations? Is there any kind of post-purchase CX at all?
The answers will largely depend on the nature of your business and the length of your sales cycle. But it’s still worth considering these points from a CX perspective. If customers feel abandoned after the deal is done, they probably won’t feel particularly loyal to your brand when the time comes to buy again.
As mentioned above, the most powerful tool for improving your CX is your CRM. After all, the core functionality of CRM is the management of customer relationships. If the CX doesn’t fall under that umbrella, what does?
So to effectively function, your CRM needs to be optimized with customer experience in mind. This optimization may require additional integrations, such as marketing analyses and social listening tools. Or it may involve creating new kinds of dashboards and reporting options. Since you’ll want to get this kind of thing right the first time, it’s essential that you work with a CRM partner who fully understands your company’s CX goals.
Learn more about the ways Faye can help you with your customer experience via marketing, set up a free consultation today.