CMO Perspectives (13th Feb, 2015)

There are a variety of ways to approach customer experience. CMOs are constantly fine-tuning their strategy to create the optimum CX environment. Sometimes, it seems like the most challenging part of this process is the human element- both on the customer and the brand sides. Our authors this week take a look at the challenge of dealing with the human aspects of CX—from deeply understanding customer experience on a personal level to the difficulties of a hiring and orchestrating the right teams for CX success. We hope these articles give you some valuable insight on these issues.

The Future of CX Is Rooted in UX and Human Centered Design []

Customer experience happens everywhere, whether you have a strategy in place or not. Every encounter a customer has with your company is part of the customer experience. The role of a company should be to identify the gap between expectations and reality.

True customer experience is inspired by empathy. While developing or refining the CX strategy one could get caught up in the technology and metrics juggernaut, but it is always necessary to understand the customer journey while developing any strategy that affects the customer. For CX strategies to truly matter it will take empathy, design, and management.

To Understand Your Customer Experience, Experience Being Your Customer []

There is an ever-greater emphasis on improving the customer experience as competition intensifies, margins shrink, and buyers more actively compare suppliers. Today a company has many touchpoints to cover in order to maintain its brand image. It becomes quite difficult to maintain this if you don’t have a strategy in place. Ideally, this strategy should be built from a customer’s perspective.

The main takeaway from the article is that you should check the efficiency of your touchpoint coverage by actually taking the time to “be” your customer, so you can better understand your customer experience. Regardless outcome, you will be enriched with the insights you get along the entire customer journey.

Digital Skills Are the Golden Ticket In 2015 []

Forrester analyst Martin Gill reports that while 75% of executives say they have some form of digital strategy, only 16% say they have the skills and capabilities necessary to deliver it. Ironically, though the average eBusiness team’s staffing budget grows with each successive year, it grows increasingly difficult to find the skills and capabilities to execute on a digital strategy. This is because technology is removing the old barriers of location and eBusiness professionals must do more than pay well to secure top talent.

Gill adds that technology and customer experience are still the hardest positions to fill. CX is among the hardest jobs to hire for and one of the most outsourced. This could point to a need for a fundamental rethink in recruitment and resourcing strategy.

Customer Experience Is a Team Sport []

Few industry insiders disagree with the fact that, in the face of rising competition and consumer empowerment, CX is the last bastion of differentiation. But many can’t agree on what role marketing plays in shaping customer experience. The author, Jake Sorofman, reminds us that while marketing may lead many of CX initiatives, it lacks the span of control to oversee (much less execute) each and every customer experience.

Sorofman suggests that good CX leadership is not about marketing taking charge, but rather “taking a cross-functional view of experience design, flipping the orientation from a portfolio view—what do we have on the truck to sell?; to a persona view—how do we best serve these audiences at the moments that count? And working to align cross-functional stakeholders to this same view.” It’s basically about bringing together marketing, sales and service in order to optimize a coherent CX.

Recognizing Audiences in the Murky Marketing Ecosystem []

In the second of its MoneyAds Mentor Series, Acxiom takes a look at how advertisers today foster trust by creating real-time connected experiences for consumers. The basis for creating these experiences is consumer recognition across all online and offline channels, which is a highly complex process.

However, the upside to this process is expanded reach for brands and increasing relevance with ad technology partners. The bottom line- connected data drives connected experiences when and where your audience is most receptive.

We hope you enjoyed our picks and bookmarked a few articles for future reference. Please don’t forget to share with other CMOs.

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