From purchasing the wifi or computer that you’re using to read this article, or grabbing dinner at a restaurant, customer experiences are a part of our daily lives. Some of these customer experiences go unnoticed—like grocery shopping and asking which aisle the mustard is in—but when these experiences are done well, they stand out.
Almost always, they involve something beyond an automated customer service ticket or annoying hold music. They involve a genuine conversation with a human who’s listening to your problem.
We spoke with customer experience leader Michael Bair, SVP, Customer Experience at FIGS. He gave us some great insight into how businesses can positively impact their customers and shared why creating personal relationships with your customers matters.
Michael's key ingredients for a tailor-made customer experience
According to Michael, "Your company has to exist for customers. Meeting people where they are. Hearing what they love or what they don't love about your product, empathizing why that's the case. Then communicating those wants and desires around the organization is essential for success." A tailor-made customer experience promotes loyalty, retains customers, encourages brand advocacy, and provides a human touch.
Personalization is key
I'm sure you have received an email from a customer service rep that read something like, "The support team has received your ticket TL-0000367, we are working on this, and someone will respond to you as soon as possible." Or maybe you start a live chat to only realize that you’re being funneled down a path of automated answers. Feels a little robotic, right? Michael noted that personalization is a well-known key to success when it comes to customer interactions, and it’s only becoming more important.
Your team needs context
Do you have the context of the customer's history to truly help them and understand their pains? Relevant and necessary information can be scattered across systems when processing customer inquiries. Michael said, "If an ad knows your age, occupation, and current mood, then certainly a company's CX team should also know that information." He also noted that using tools with seamless and complete integrations is important so that key pieces of information don't go missing so that they don't just feel like a ticket number.
Proper training will be game-changing
Michael noted that team training is a very important part of building an excellent customer experience. When your team knows exactly what your team processes are and how to talk to customers, they’ll be able to deliver the experience you’re hoping for. Part of proper training is giving your team clear metrics to aim for and measure against.
Michael also said, “How you measure great customer experience matters. Are you defining great customer experience or are you letting your customers?? Have you communicated what defines great customer experience within your team?” Being customer led means customers also define success and you make sure your team is properly trained to provide that experience.
Automation will be necessary—in the right doses
When businesses use automation correctly it can be a game changer for enabling you to focus efforts on important areas like personalization, for instance. "AI machine learning, natural language processing can be used to handle lower complexity tasks, like where is my order tickets, address changes, password unlock addresses. It gives customers what they want faster with an easy response and allows the rest of the higher complexity tasks to be solved and personalized by humans."
With automation, teams can make sure that they have time to focus on the most important activities. Minor administrative tasks should be handled automatically, so teams can focus on solving customer problems rather than performing time-consuming administrative tasks that automation could handle.
An excellent customer experience can be so beneficial to your team. You can’t put a price on it and creating personalized communication and existing for your customers are a great starting point to creating a great recipe.
Written by Jonny Parker
Originally Published: 10 September 2021