#1 | DCX - Perspectives and insights on digital customer experience.
Friction in the Customer Journey; Who owns DCX in your Organization; Linkedin poll results and more
Welcome to DCX- Inaugural Edition
DCX stands for Digital Customer Experience, a specialized area of customer experience that employs digital tools and channels to build lasting relationships with customers. DCX is not a specific software or a platform, but rather a strategy, methodology, and way of thinking.
Who is this newsletter for?
This newsletter is intended for busy CX professionals and anyone in business to learn and collaborate at the cutting edges of the customer experience space. In each issue, you'll find articles about leaders in the space, best practices, the latest news, tools, strategies, experiences, and cutting-edge research in the world of DCX.
Why should you focus on DCX?
Today, a company's job is no longer just to sell or deliver goods and services, but to create deep and lasting relationships with customers. And the landscape of customer expectations has changed drastically, especially in the last few years. Customers expect more than ever before—they want to get answers quickly, they want to be able to communicate and interact 24/7 with companies using their preferred channel or device, and they expect brands to know who they are as people—not just as numbers on a balance sheet.
If you don't have a comprehensive digital customer experience strategy, you're putting your company at risk of being left behind by competitors who do have one.
Why should you consider my perspective?
So, a little bit about me before we jump into this. I am a customer experience-obsessed nerd. I've been working in the digital product and experience space for many years, most recently at Comcast as VP, Digital Experiences, leading a talented and dedicated team of Experience professionals, serving over 30 million customers of Xfinity branded consumer products and services. In that role, I was responsible for the strategy, design, and delivery of omnichannel sales and consumer self-service experiences across all digital channels. Our focus was on driving increased digital sales and self-service support transactions, reducing customer effort and agent interactions while increasing NPS and customer satisfaction.
In addition, as VP, Customer Experience Delivery and Operations, I led the creation of an experience quality discipline combining testing, data, analytics, and insights that guided prioritization and delivered more efficient digital customer and agent experiences, reducing operational costs and increasing transactional and employee NPS scores dramatically. Also at Comcast, I helped launch Xfinity Mobile, recognized for its digital sales and service simplicity by customers and by ACSI, as #1 in customer satisfaction in 2021. (XM is now a key part of Comcast’s Internet business strategy)
Prior to Comcast, I worked with senior leaders at AT&T, Jaguar/Land Rover, Cricket Wireless, Nokia, and more on digital CX strategies and apps.
My true passion is at the intersection of technology and customer experience - combining user-centric research and design with data, platforms, and tools to deliver awesome digital customer experiences. I love digging into the customer journey to define the ideal digital experience, uncover pain points, analyze the causes, and fix any issues. To me, awesome DCX is an experience that is available 24/7, is personalized, proactive, thoughtful, simple, seamless, requires no additional human interaction, and delivers loyal, excited customers as well as operational efficiencies and cost savings for the business.
If this type of experience is what you aim to achieve or influence within your organization, then this newsletter is for you. I aim to help you see what's possible, what works and what doesn't, and to learn about the companies, tools, strategies, experiments, and ideas leading the charge.
I'm excited that you are here - It's going to be a great journey together!
This is my first time using this newsletter format, so any feedback is greatly appreciated. Is it too long, too short, insightful or not, worth your time? Ideas to make it better? Thank you!
Friction in the digital customer journey - Part 1
Friction (ˈfrik-shən) Customer friction is anything that creates hesitation, slows, or disrupts your customer experience.
Friction in the digital customer journey is an experience killer of loyalty and trust. It can take many forms. From copy and design inconsistencies to non-personalized sales offerings and requiring multiple logins, to the lack of understanding of customer actions or service experiences from channel to channel, friction can cause customers to feel frustrated, stressed, and angry, damaging their overall experience with your brand.
In the story below, we see how friction points can show up anywhere in the customer’s journey. Today that journey usually starts with digital interactions that set the tone for everything that follows. Creating a seamless experience requires cooperation and alignment across all areas of an organization.
Recently, I ordered a new internet service through their website. The experience started delightfully. The website presented a simple value proposition and pricing. I selected an offer, and the order took less than 5 minutes to complete, including entering my payment info and selecting an installation date and time.
Within minutes I received an email confirmation detailing my order and preparing me for the next steps, highlighting the installation date and time window and a link to how to prepare for the installation. It also provided a big button above the fold to check the order status and change the installation time online. I also received an SMS asking me to confirm the installation information. Simple and timely. All looked good, so far. I was excited about how easy this was and expected the same level of support leading up to and through installation.
Unfortunately, on the day of the installation, everything fell apart. Between the order and this day, I heard nothing from the company regarding the installation - no more emails or texts. So, I awoke early to ensure if the tech arrived at 8 am, I would be ready. By 11 am, I was beginning to get concerned. So, I clicked the button on the order confirmation email that said ‘View Order Status.’ I landed on a web page with an empty form, where I was expected to enter the order number, service address zip code, and my last name OR my account number. At this point in my journey, I was frustrated that I had not heard from anyone, so being asked to enter this information manually was irksome. Given I had clicked the link from the personalized email, I expected that the information would auto-populate or even bypass this form to go directly to the order status. I went back to the email to find the order number and I entered the info. The response was that the order was in progress, with no delay mentioned.
I was to find out soon, that this was not the case.
…To be continued in the next issue.
Question for discussion: Who owns DCX in your organization?
Providing meaningful digital interactions with both customers and employees needs to be a strategic initiative for every company. More than an afterthought or siloed department, more than just a set of channels and technologies, it should live in the very core of an organization, a way of life.
Where does the leadership for the digital customer experience live in your company? Is it at the executive leadership level or bundled in with the engineering department? Does it report to the customer care team, the CMO, Product? What’s the optimal place for DCX?
DCX is proudly supported by:
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LinkedIn Poll Results
This month I asked my LinkedIn network to weigh in on tools to build empathy and trust in digital experiences.
Proactive Messaging edged out for the win. This says to me that acknowledging issues and managing expectations as early as possible is key to showing empathy and building trust.
Building a successful proactive messaging experience requires a detailed understanding of the customer journey supporting the creation of channel-specific contextual content, coupled with systems/journey monitoring and triggers in order to deliver the appropriate message at the right moment in the right channel.
Interesting that AI/ML trailed the pack as I see it as the foundation for each of the other three tools enabling deeper analysis of the data created enabling continuous learning and better automation.
Let’s hear from you. Share your thoughts on this poll in the comments.
Links to Industry news, thought leaders, and ideas of interest
Excerpt: "We are now at the point where competitive advantage will be based on the ability to capture, analyze, and utilize personalized customer data at scale and on how a company uses AI to understand, shape, customize, and optimize the customer journey."
AI isn't just for chatbots - AI and Machine Learning need to be at the core of all of your business systems garnering insights and enhancing processes at the speed of business.
According to the authors, friction tanks customer loyalty. In their 3rd book on CX, they present 9 steps to become frictionless, profile 20 companies that are striving to remove friction (Amazon, RedHat, Trek Bikes, Uber, Xero, and others), and share a lot of "How to?" details, and of course feature fun cartoons from Jon Kudelka.
Submit an article, link or news of interest to share for an upcoming edition
Feedback is greatly appreciated. Thank you!