Making Digital CX More Personal

Why are customers not satisfied and brands, all too often, not seeing the desired ROI on their investments? Time to make CX more personal.

It’s no secret that brands are increasingly embracing digital customer experiences across the customer journey. What may be more surprising is that there is a massive gap between how effective brands believe these experiences to be and how consumers feel.

According to a recent study, while 53% of brands believe that their customers are satisfied with their digital self-service tools, only 15% of customers actually agree. In another report, PWC found that 54% of consumers believe CX in most companies needs improvement.

So after so much investment poured into delivering an exponentially growing variety of digital customer experiences, what’s missing? Why are customers not satisfied and brands, all too often, not seeing the desired ROI on their investments?

The Problem With Today’s Digital CX

Your digital CX should be more than an alternative to in-person interactions — it should be better, faster and smarter. After all, why shouldn’t it be? It’s powered by massive computational resources and advanced machine learning and AI that far outperform any one person’s capabilities to respond to a customer concern or manage a customer interaction. And yet, customers are clearly discontent with the quality of these interactions.

Consumers have not been shy in telling us what specifically they’re unhappy about. And sometimes, we already know ourselves:

  • Digital experiences are often clunky, time-consuming and cumbersome. The tech isn’t helping: 43% of professionals say complex CX technology is hurting the customer experience. When it comes to self-service, for example, 81% of consumers want more options, but only 15% are happy with current tools.
  • Brands aren’t human anymore. Two thirds of consumers believe brands have lost their human touch, and nearly a third would leave the brand after one bad experience.
  • Personalization is often lacking. McKinsey & Company found that 76% of consumers get frustrated when they don’t get personalized experiences from brands. And frustration very quickly turns into churn.

The good news is it’s possible for companies to tackle these issues and put customers back at the center of CX — where they belong. And all it takes is a truly customer-centric approach to CX.

Related Article: 5 Ways to Build a CX-First Business Culture

Streamline Your Digital CX

If there’s one rule to giving your customer a good experience, it’s this: Don’t waste their time. Maybe that sounds obvious, but it happens more than you’d think.

While tech stacks are getting more complex, simple processes are still full of friction. Think of repeating your name and personal information every time one service rep hands you to the next or being asked for details you already entered into the system. It doesn’t matter how flashy the customer experience is — if you’re missing the basics the end result will be a poor customer experience and, you guessed it, churn.

The solution to clunky CX differs depending on the specific situation. For larger enterprises, the issue often stems from using a broad set of technological platforms added over the years that don’t always play nice with each other. The massive IT investments often required to migrate to a more streamlined tech stack are hard to justify with any straightforward ROI calculation, so instead the tech stack just keeps growing and becoming ever more complex. For these companies, adding a Customer Journey Management platform may be the best path forward. While it may sound counterintuitive to add yet another solution to the stack in order to reduce complexity, these platforms are aimed at optimizing orchestration across channels and touchpoints and are often the best step towards a cohesive customer experience.

However, for smaller companies the solution may actually be the opposite: Strip unnecessary technologies from your tech stack. As any marketer knows, automation isn’t fully automated and each added tech solution multiplies the complexity and therefore the orchestration issues you’ll encounter. Ask yourself — do you truly need every tech you’re using? Have they all delivered the value you thought they would? Alternatively, could you perhaps move some activities into more horizontal platforms that make orchestration slightly less complex?

Whatever the solution, aim to reduce friction by making cross-channel communications seamless. Today’s customers are on a variety of channels, from email to social media to apps — and your digital approach should reflect that.

Another way to be customer-centric? Make sure you’re not overwhelming customers with long blocks of text no one will read. Communication should be clear and simple. Talk to people like they’re… well, people. Which leads me to the next point.

Related Article: How Can Your Organization Truly Be Customer-Centric?

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