Discover more from DCX - Perspectives and Insights on Digital CX
#61 | DCX - Perspectives and insights on digital customer experience
A Talk with Megan Burns; Turning Negative Feedback into Powerful Growth; How Do You Define Customer Loyalty Program Success? Links to Industry news and the DCX Thought Leader Profile of the Week
Thank you so much to all 552 CX professionals from 36 US states and 66 countries for being loyal readers of DCX weekly. I am incredibly grateful for your continuous support and engagement.
DCX Podcast #11
A Talk with Megan Burns
Imagine my excitement when I got the chance to chat with the brilliant customer experience guru, Megan Burns, on the DCX podcast! I've been an avid follower of her remarkable career, so you can only imagine how eager I was to hear her incredible insights on CX. Believe me, Megan didn't disappoint. The interview was an absolute goldmine of practical wisdom that any CX professional could apply to their own work.
Here are seven key lessons from Megan:
1. Change mindsets slowly through incremental epiphanies, not forcing change on people.
2. Focus on moving companies from "less bad" experiences to uniquely good experiences aligned to their brand.
3. Key skills for CX professionals include psychology, business acumen, data analysis/presentation, and systems thinking.
4. See technologies like AI/ML as more of an operational innovation than an experience innovation.
5. Great CX helps customers accomplish goals and see the company as useful in their lives.
6. Celebrate small victories along the CX journey.
7. Be a catalyst for change by finding small things to change that start a chain reaction.
Tune in for more practical wisdom from a leading CX expert!
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Turning Negative Feedback into Powerful Growth
I want to share a story with you, hoping it will inspire and empower you to recognize that negative feedback can be a secret tool for refinement and growth.
I'll never forget the first time I received a scathing email from a customer who was incredibly unsatisfied with our product. The message stung because we had put our heart and soul into what we were creating, and I felt immensely defeated by the criticism.
As I distanced myself from the initial shock, I reminded myself of a crucial mindset - this feedback was not about me or the team but about improving our product. As I began to rethink our approach, I recognized that this seemingly negative experience could transform into a valuable lesson for growth.
Dealing with negative customer feedback can be a challenging task for any of us. However, these critiques can be invaluable for growth and improvement when approached with the right mindset.
It's important to remember that negative feedback is often about the product, service, or a particular experience, not about you or your team personally. While it’s essential not to internalize the criticism, taking every piece of feedback seriously is equally vital. Every complaint represents an opportunity for growth.
By treating these critiques as opportunities rather than setbacks, you, too, can craft an extraordinary customer experience, turning critics into champions.
The Path Forward
My team and I dedicated ourselves to making incremental improvements in response to the feedback, approaching each stage with the right mindset:
Address the customer's concerns: We reached out to the customer promptly, assuring them that we were listening and committed to resolving the issue. A swift response shows the customer that you value their input.
Lesson: Before you can address a concern, you first need to understand it. Listen to your customers with an open mind and empathetic heart. They need to feel heard and understood. Often, simply letting them express their concerns can defuse a tense situation. Maintaining professionalism in every interaction, even when faced with harsh criticism, not only addresses the immediate concern but also builds trust with the broader customer base.
Embrace the feedback loop: We shared the feedback across relevant departments, using it to inspire our entire team to focus on enhancing the user experience.
Lesson: With a feedback loop in place, you can transform constructive critiques into practical adjustments that refine and enhance your offerings. This creates a continuous improvement process, ensuring you always provide your customers with the best possible experience.
Offer solutions and compensation: We reached out to the customer and showed them that their satisfaction is our top priority. We offered a partial refund as a gesture of goodwill and let them know we are dedicated to improving their experience.
Lesson: In situations like this, strive to find solutions or provide appropriate and beneficial compensation for your customers. It could be a product replacement or a refund, whatever works best for them.
Follow-up: After we improved the user interface and the onboarding experience, we reached out to the customer with a personalized message. We encouraged them to try our product again and gave them a discount code for their next purchase.
Lesson: Once you've addressed and hopefully resolved a complaint, encourage the customer to try your product or service again. Your commitment to their satisfaction can leave a lasting impression.
Reflect and celebrate: The customer gave us another chance and became a loyal advocate of our brand, posting positive reviews online. This accomplishment marked a significant achievement in transforming a challenging experience into a productive, growth-centered outcome.
Lesson: It's also crucial to regularly review the feedback you receive to look for patterns. Is there a recurring problem or concern? Addressing systemic issues can preemptively reduce the chance of receiving similar negative feedback in the future. Finally, when an unhappy customer becomes a loyal advocate for your brand after you've addressed their concerns, it's a cause for celebration. Such instances boost team morale and serve as a testament to the power of attentive customer service.
So, by genuinely taking the time to understand the customer's concerns, as a team, we realized that the customer had valid points: the user interface was clunky, and the onboarding experience was challenging to understand. This realization led to an opportunity to improve ourselves and our offering, turning a negative situation into a catalyst for change.
Negative feedback can be your secret tool for refinement and growth. By treating these critiques as opportunities rather than setbacks, businesses can craft an unparalleled customer experience, turning critics into champions. After all, it’s not the mistake but how you address it that truly defines your brand in the eyes of your customers.
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This week I asked our colleagues in the Customer Experience Professionals Group on Linkedin about what defines success in a loyalty program. I really enjoyed this conversation. More below.
Repeat business - 38%: This is the most popular metric, suggesting that most respondents see direct, tangible outcomes (i.e., repeat transactions) as a key indicator of a loyalty program's success.
Brand advocacy - 25%: Representing a quarter of respondents, this metric highlights the value of word-of-mouth and the power of customers championing the brand to others. This correlates with the theme that brand advocacy can grow organic business.
Emotional attachment - 21%: While not the primary metric for most, a significant portion recognizes the importance of customers forming an emotional bond with a brand, which indicates a deeper, longer-term loyalty that may not be as easily swayed by competitor incentives.
Engagement - 17%: This suggests that a segment of respondents value customer interaction with the brand, whether it's through social media, surveys, or other forms of participation. This can potentially lead to a deeper understanding of customer needs and a more personalized customer experience.
Overall Themes and Insights:
Loyalty vs. Advocacy: There's a distinction between being loyal to a brand and advocating for it. Advocacy can lead to organic business growth, which is invaluable. The distinction between loyalty and advocacy is seen in the results. Repeat business (38%) is a direct measure of loyalty. In contrast, brand advocacy (25%) is a measure of customers actively promoting the brand, implying that while repeat business is more prevalent, there's a significant emphasis on customers not just being loyal but also advocating for the brand.
Conditional Loyalty: Loyalty isn't always about emotional attachment; it can be tied to financial incentives. This kind of loyalty might shift if a better offer appears.Emotional attachment (21%) can be seen as the antithesis of conditional loyalty. It suggests that, for a fifth of the respondents, true loyalty goes beyond financial incentives and is rooted in deeper emotional connections to a brand.
The Role of Loyalty Programs: While loyalty programs can incentivize repeat business, some professionals question whether they're essential. The quality of the product/service and the relationship with the customer can sometimes be enough. Repeat business leading the poll indicates that tangible benefits, perhaps like discounts or rewards, play a crucial role in how many define the success of loyalty programs.
Retention vs. Acquisition: There's an emphasis on the importance of retaining current customers and ensuring their satisfaction rather than always seeking new customers. The high percentage for repeat business (38%) aligns with the theme that emphasizes the value of retaining and satisfying current customers rather than always seeking new ones.
Overdelivering: Providing more than what's expected can be a strategy for building loyalty and advocacy. While
The poll results suggest a balanced view of loyalty among respondents. While tangible outcomes like repeat business are most valued, there's also significant importance placed on the intangibles like advocacy, emotional connections, and active engagement. This balance indicates a broad understanding of loyalty, recognizing its direct economic benefits and the long-term value of deeper customer relationships.
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This Forbes article discusses how organizations need actionable insights to improve CX and must leverage more diverse data and advanced analytics to produce these insights. However, most organizations lack the data infrastructure and analytics resources they need to develop effective customer insights
The Value of Digital Transformation (hbr.org)
Despite 89% of large companies undergoing digital and AI transformations, only 31% of expected revenue lift and 25% of expected cost savings have been realized. The authors analyzed McKinsey's Finalta benchmark to understand how digital transformation creates value, tracking 80 banks from 2018 to 2022. Their findings reveal that digital leaders create significant shareholder value compared to laggards, often by introducing hard-to-replicate improvements.
This article discusses how providing a compassionate customer experience can lead to lasting brand loyalty and how small gestures can make a big difference.
A great customer experience is more important than a great product.
Problems are okay, but friction in resolving them is not.
Delight customers with small gestures.
Meet people where they are with compassion and humanity.
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Each week, I share a profile of a person from LinkedIn whom I believe can positively impact your life and career.
Beth Karawan is not your average marketing professional. With over two decades of experience in the industry, she has mastered the art of understanding consumer behavior, brand strategy, and market research across a wide range of product categories. Based in the vibrant New York City metropolitan area, Beth's expertise knows no bounds.
Driven by a passion for human-centered marketing, Beth co-founded ImprintCX, a game-changing company that is revolutionizing how organizations connect with their high-value customers. Frustrated by the limitations of generic strategies, Beth and her partner, Ed Murphy, set out to truly understand customers' unique needs and experiences. ImprintCX offers a comprehensive suite of insights, consulting, and activation services that are tailor-made for each organization.
But ImprintCX doesn't stop there. They understand that meaningful experiences are the foundation of strong relationships between organizations, brands, employees, and customers. Beth and her team prioritize creating those unforgettable moments that leave a lasting impression.
Before embarking on her entrepreneurial journey, Beth lent her expertise to top-notch companies like Santander Bank N.A and EX/CX Strategic Edge. She understands the ins and outs of the industry from multiple perspectives, having worked as a consultant, an agency leader, and a brand strategist for esteemed brands like Kraft Foods, L'Oréal, and Canon.
Beth is the epitome of commitment and excellence in the marketing world. Her dedication to delivering outstanding results and her unwavering passion for understanding customers sets her apart. When you work with Beth, you can rest assured that you are in the hands of a true marketing mastermind.
Thank you for reading this week.
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