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CX is a game changer – here is why

January 26, 2020

Customer experience

Sam Richardson

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In an ever-increasing competitive world, companies need to find their forward momentum in something more than traditional marketing, sales and distribution. We at Nepa found CX Customer Experience to be that competitive edge.

A recent study discovered that companies who have truly embraced customer experience are three times more likely to exceed their business goals, an amazing feat for any company in any industry.

Data from the study also suggests that if two near-identical companies, both offering the same products or services and operating in the same industry, the market leader of the two will be the one with an implemented CX strategy.

READ ALSO: Benefits of Path to Purchase Analysis

CX is the game changer

If CX is the game changer then what is CX? Well, here at Nepa we define CX, or Customer Experience, as the experiences that matters the most to your customers. By placing a continuous focus on your customers experiences, no matter where or how, you will ensure that the very lifeline of your business is on track. Also, if your business is on track you will have both time and resources to optimize for market growth.

Can CX really be that successful?

Yes, it can and we have the experience to prove it. Here at Nepa we have CX technology and expertise to deliver customer-centric growth in 4 steps. Furthermore, the companies we work with are well known leaders in their markets.

Our 3-step approach:

  1. Hear your Customers
  2. Connect the CX program to your business data and optimize for Customers and Growth
  3. Empower your Employees

By following our proven approach, you will optimize your customer experience to drive growth.

READ ALSO: Power-up your Marketing Mix with brand expertise and data science

We all want success so start having yours today

It is already the end of January and 2020 will not wait for any late bloomers. So contact us today and start your CX journey.

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The CX Loyalty Metrics that Actually Matter

October 25, 2019

CX Loyalty Metrics Nepa

Robert Beatus

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A key challenge of implementing a CX program is demonstrating its value up and down the organization. To do that, you have to show that it delivers results. There are no shortage of metrics available, but that’s part of the challenge: big data doesn’t always mean big insights. How do you identify the metrics that really matter?

While what matters will differ from company to company and even unit to unit, there are some basic principles that apply. You need to have a 360 degree view of the customer, one that includes both observed and stated loyalty as well as behavioral and emotional characteristics. You want to identify metrics that clearly deliver business value and, ultimately, drive an increase in revenues and a growing customer base.

READ ALSO: Brand tracking is key to increase brand awareness

As a first step, you have to define the most effective KPIs. To do this, you need to understand and define how loyalty drives your business and which types of loyalty are most important. There are stated and observed emotional metrics, and stated and observed behavioral metrics. Each has its value, depending on what you want to do and the audience, but it is generally agreed that from a customer point of view emotional loyalty is more enduring than behavioral loyalty and observed behavior more insightful than stated behavior. Still, each has something to add to the overall picture.

Keeping in mind that there is no real “magic bullet,” what tools are available to help you capture the metrics that actually matter? We have identified six.

1. Net Promoter Score

The Net Promoter Score (NPS) has gained huge traction in the last ten years, with the consulting firm Bain and others claiming it’s the only data point needed to predict consumer behavior. This seems to us overly optimistic. The metric divides customers into three categories: detractors, passives, and promoters. The score is determined by subtracting the percentage of detractors from the percentage of promoters. It’s an important number and can be very effective in change management because it’s easy to understand.

READ ALSO: Brand research: What is it & why is it important?

2. Repurchase Intent

Repurchase Intent is another good metric. This seeks to measure loyalty by tracking a customer’s intent to stay a customer. It’s especially powerful for subscription-based services as it implicitly incorporates barriers to switching.

3. Cross Selling

Cross Selling is a good number, too. It captures existing customers intent to buy more products or services from a company, an important indication of loyalty and a powerful tool for growing the business.

4. Price Tolerance

Price Tolerance is another way to measure just how loyal your customers are. Are they willing to pay more for your product? How much more? The preference for your products versus your competitors at various price points can reveal a lot about their loyalty.

READ ALSO: Benefits of Path to Purchase analysis

5. Customer Loyalty Index

The Customer Loyalty Index (CLI) is a standardized measure designed to track loyalty over time. It incorporates the values of NPS, repurchase intent, and cross selling. While this would seem to be an interesting metric, in practice it’s often hard to understand and its value difficult to communicate. Most users will find its constituent metrics more valuable as standalone tools.

6. Share of Wallet

Finally, there is Share of Wallet, a metric that measures how consumers divide their spending among various brands in a specific category. This tool works best for fast moving consumer brands and can offer insights into relative strength and market share. It’s less helpful for modelling purposes and, like CLI, can be hard to communicate.

READ ALSO: CX is a game changer – here is why

Why loyalty matters

Few businesses can survive for long without customer loyalty. No one can stay ahead of the competition all the time, and loyalty buys you breathing space, it allows you to experiment with new products and services and to make the occasional mistake. CX is designed to provide insight into how to develop and grow that kind of loyalty.

But simply implementing a program is not enough: you have to prove its value every day. To do that, you have to measure, and to make your measurements effective, you have to have the right metrics. Those metrics, in turn, must be selected for their ability to generate business value.

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CX Business Value Starts with Buy In

September 27, 2019

Sam Richardson

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By now it’s well established that a CX program, properly executed, can reenergize organizations and transform the customer experience. Getting the technology in the door is relatively straightforward, but before CX can work its data-driven magic you need management buy in.

Based on our experience we have identified four levels of that need to buy in:

  • Board of Directors
  • C-Suite executives
  • Mid-level, e.g. Insights Dept. or LOB leader
  • Front line employees

Board or CEO:

Initiating the successful development of a CX program is intimidating. If the mandate doesn’t come from the top of the organization, gaining Board- and CEO-support early on could make or break its success. Senior people promoting CX improvement as a strategic imperative provides motivation for the rest of the organization to support initiatives. Further, executive level backing leads to changes in organizational structure and resource allocation required to be a customer-centric organization.

Recommended action: Pick the Right Test Case

Board and CEO approval is important and picking the right test case for rolling out CX is one of the best tactics available to gain momentum. Start with businesses you know and where you can quickly show value. The focus needs to be on “must have” and not “nice to have”. Establishing a clear purpose and ownership of the process while involving key stakeholders makes it easier to achieve results.

READ ALSO: Brand tracking – your most valuable marketing tool

Take, for example, a retailer that experiencing declining sales due to retention issues. Focus on a vertical or business unit that can ease the CEO’s pain point – improving the digital experience, for example. This results in customer needs being solved quickly and allowing for preventative measures to take shape for future issues; and ultimately creating happy, returning customers. Being focused early on to show results is a win for you, your CEO and your customer.


Mid-level buy in has a somewhat different paradigm. In this instance, the CX program is likely centered on a department or business line and has not yet captured the entire organization. These executives generally don’t have the ability to dictate implementation beyond their own sphere of influence and the program itself may not yet be seen as a high priority for senior management.

Recommended action: address a current business problem

To make a program successful at the mid-level requires a demonstration of the power of CX to foster change. One proven way is to focus on a handful of business cases where CX can be put in place and show results quickly for specific managers you may need the support of. This is best done by addressing their current business problem, rather than trying to change the whole organization at once. Nothing succeeds like success, and measurable improvements in the customer experience that lead to better business and bottom line outcomes are the most powerful way to build support and expand implementation.

READ ALSO: Brand research: What is it & why is it important?

Front Line Employees:

Front line employees are also critical to making CX work since they’re the ones who ultimately interact with customers. As with management, the best argument is one that uses data to demonstrate a benefit – improved sales and higher commissions, or more repeat business, for example. Your front-line employees are the face of your business. When your customers have have fewer problematic interactions, they become more loyal.

Recommended action: create a system of tiered measurement

Up or down the organization the program should include a number of elements that have been demonstrated to improve success. Create a relevant, compelling story internally. Plan and prioritize how you will communicate that story to your audiences. Create materials to make your case and use cross-functional workshops to spread your message, motivate and attract new stakeholders. Your employee training is key to engaging the front-line with your CX initiatives.

But regardless of where you seek buy-in, setting expectations is critical to long-term success. One way to do this is by putting in place a system of tiered measurement, with milestones at six months, one year, and so on. This provides time to listen to colleagues and to more fully develop the roadmap for creating a customer centric company. Another tip: don’t starve the program for resources at the start. As you move ahead and the results become tangible, they then provide the proof points for expanding the program across the organization.

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Old Clubs Leading the Way with New Fan-driven Approach

July 16, 2019

Sam Richardson

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I’ve been fortunate to attend two conferences this summer in the great sports town of Chicago. 

The Intersport Sports Brand and Engagement Summit run by the Sports Business Journal and the excellent 29th Annual ALSD Conference and Tradeshow brought sports organization leaders together with companies like Nepa who are at the cutting edge of sports research and analytics. 

During the course of both conferences, it was great to see how far sports teams have come in understanding the value in their fans and partners. – However, it was also clear that many still do not have a proper handle on developing better fan insights. Data-driven approaches and new technologies are an imperative in this day and age. 

I’ve always been a big fan of the Windy City, having first visited in 1989, three years after the Chicago Bears enjoyed their famous Super Bowl XX winning season. At the time, I was an undergrad studying my bachelors’ degree in Scotland,  but had taken the summer off touring U.S. sports cities with a buddy.  

We arrived in Chicago and, being big NFL fans, made a beeline for the iconic Soldier Field only to find the stadium locked up for the offseason. Unperturbed, we knocked on the big iron doors at the old south entrance to the stadium and managed to talk the groundskeeper into letting us in after coming ‘4,000’ miles from Scotland just to see Soldier Field!  We were rewarded with a wonderful hour-long self-guided tour of the old stadium and even managed to get our feet onto the hallowed turf. 

Thirty years later, almost to the day, I was back touring Soldier Field, this time as an attendee at the ALSD conference, where Nepa were invited to speak on about disruptors in sports.  

Originally constructed in 1924 and dedicated to U.S. servicemen and women who died in WWI, the 61,500 stadium has changed a lot in 30 years thanks to a somewhat controversial $660 million ‘flying saucer’ renovation in 2003Sadly, the modern redesign resulted in the stadium being ‘dropped’ from the National Historic Landmark register. 

But while the new architecture and continued location has its critics, I was impressed with how well the new architecture had complemented and preserved the ‘feel’ of the old building by conserving the inner concourse and its iconic Greek colonnades outside. 

What impressed me most though was how the Bears, celebrating their 100th season this year, have embraced new technology in almost every aspect of the revamped facility from adding a comprehensive mobile app and DAS wireless network to ticketless entry, new video boards, interactive seating charts, locked charging stations and in-seat ordering. 

Up on the North side of town, the changes made at the historic Wrigley Field are even more impressive. The Bears played at Wrigley from 1921-1970, but it’s more famous as the home to the Chicago Cubs since 1912, when it opened as Weeghman Park. Changes and renovations to baseball’s second-oldest stadium had to be considered carefully to respect the history of the grand old dame, but the Cubs have embraced new technology and modern improvements while preserving the romance and majesty of this iconic facility. 

Their ‘1060 Project’ began in 2014 and since, the old stadium’s bleachers have been expanded, a 4,000 square foot jumbotron has been installed (but respectfully to mirror the iconic old green scoreboard) locker rooms upgraded and the bullpens relocated. Four new luxurious field-level suites have been added to increase club seats from just 70 to 1,700 with new revenue-generating locations such as the “W” Club, Barrel Room (sponsored by Makers Mark), the 1914 Club (American Airlines), the Catalina Club and the Bunker Suites – all of which hark back to the history of the Cubs and the golden age of Wrigley. 

The Cubs have taken key learnings from this five-year project, citing the following keys to their success: plan early, adopt a data-driven and client-focused approach, speak to the fans and offer them what they want, create urgency, sell creatively and never forget about service. 

It would have been easy for both the Cubs and Bears to sit back on tradition, rest on their historic laurels and continue to sell based on their fan’s loyalty. But the move to modernity and state of the art technology, while respectfully preserving and indeed enriching their traditions, has very much been embraced by two of America’s oldest sports teams.  

Both of these organizations have realized, that in order to continue to attract fans away from their home viewing experience and other competing interests, they must remain relevant by continually talking to and surveying their fans for feedback, as well as staying focused on high levels of service, luxury, convenience and technology being offered by their competitors both inside and outside of sports. 

In both cases, century-old institutions have embraced technology and a data-driven approach to maintain and grow their business in the new digital age. If even the Cubs and Bears are doing this, shouldn’t your organization be doing the same 

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Successful Programs: Services & Insights from Forrester VoC Report

July 12, 2019

Sam Richardson

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Is your Voice of the Customer program speaking to you? Or are you spending more and getting less than you expected?

In a recent report advising CX leaders on when and how to transition Voice of Customer (VoC) vendors, Forrester CX Analyst, Faith Adams, suggested starting with a services partner to make the most of the technologies already in place. We were thrilled that Faith mentioned Nepa as one such services partner. While coverage of the CX measurement space has focused on shiny new tech offerings in recent years, we’re proud to be recognized for what we believe is our willingness to challenge conventional thinking with flexible technology infrastructure and services to build on what works.

Humble brag over – read on for our brief summary of the 3 Key Takeaways from the June 2019 Forrester report, How To Transition Your Voice-Of-The-Customer Vendor

Takeaway 1 – “Failure is not always the vendor’s fault”

Forrester notes that the complex intertwinement of client and vendor can make it difficult to make a change, so some caution is warranted. There will be implementations that come up short. There will be a need to continually fine-tune programs and, sometimes, to find new vendors. Whoever the vendor, organizations will have to change, too, if they want to maximize value.  This includes how they conduct surveys, share data and communicate internally, and, importantly, how they manage the balance between technology and services.

Takeaway 2 – “Consider the reimplementation option”

Noting the cost in time and money, Forrester suggests that companies first consider a reimplementation of an existing program before moving to a new vendor.  It’s at this point that bringing in a new (or a first-time) service provider makes sense.  An outside point of view can bring fresh perspective, and the provider may be able to introduce ideas that head off the need for a wholesale change in technology.  Nepa works with many clients in this way, optimizing existing VoC capabilities and working to identify and capture more incisive insights from existing infrastructure.

But if the VoC program is too deeply flawed, and the level of management frustration has reached a point of no return, then there may be no other choice than to make a change.  When that becomes necessary, it’s important that you approach the process in a systematic way.  An entire post could be written about that – but with an increasingly complex set of VoC technologies, it’s best to take your time and engage help in the process.

Takeaway 3 – “Successful VoC programs balance technology and services”

In recent years, there was a tendency to look for tech-only, DIY, solutions. As CX metrics remain below expectation and flat, companies recognize a need to do something different to address their current challenges, which include data formatting and siloing, failure to fully exploit the insights available from the data, an inability to incorporate unstructured and unsolicited data, failure to track and report ROI, and many more. In another post, we’ve shared more thoughts on ways a services provider can help companies identify and address these weaknesses. 

As Forrester notes in its report, VoC is still at an “immature” point in its development in spite of all the tools and talent available to improve the platforms.  That means mistakes will be made.  At the same time, new technologies will be introduced that will move the state of the art forward.  Some vendors will keep pace, others will fall behind.

Whether you’re changing vendors, doing a reimplementation, or looking at VoC for the first time, it’s important to have a resource available who understands the technology and can guide you along.  If you’re there, start with a call to Nepa.

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CX and Brand: Better Together

June 26, 2019

Sam Richardson

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Whatever happened to Brand?  In the rush to embrace customer experience (CX), it’s become something of a marketing orphan. Our research shows that just 6% of companies are currently using Brand as an input for their CX strategy.

But consumers don’t make the same distinction. They associate CX with Brand and Brand with CX, and one influences the other.  Consumers start on the path to purchase and make buying decisions based on both Brand and CX, emotion and experience. And while transactional CX measures last transaction and complaints, strategic CX works with Brand to harmonize the promise and the delivery. But many companies continue to measure Brand impact and CX separately, and fail to understand how to maximize the interaction between the two.

READ ALSO: Brand research: What is it & why is it important?

There are several reasons for this.  It may simply reflect “siloing” within the organization – with different teams and different systems collecting data that supports brand and CX and then not sharing that data.  It may also be a function of the different media that are targeted and how their impact is measured.  Brand, for example, tends to go wider through the use of broadcast and other mass-oriented media.  Its message is often emotional.  CX is generally more targeted, and more oriented towards last touch and generating a short-term action.  But Brand often precedes CX – for example, an emotional response generated by the Brand can start the customer on the path to purchase. Or, as Forrester puts it, Brand sets the tone and CX brings the brand to life (or should).

Where things go astray, however, is when Brand messaging and CX don’t link up. Forrester Research has stated that, “The ideal gap between the brand image (what customers are promised) and the brand reality (what customer actually experience) is zero”.  But the research firm also notes that, globally, 57% of marketing decision makers say that aligning CX with brand is not a top priority.   Where the values and the messaging don’t align, there is a high likelihood of creating confusion and frustration among purchasers.

READ ALSO: Brand tracking is key to increase brand awareness

So how do you bring the two into alignment?  We recommend starting with a four-step process, as follows:

  • Don’t do CX in a vacuum. Use the Brand to design the Customer Experience.
  • Identify the most important customer journeys from the customer experience.
  • Measure the emotional experiences often associated with Brand. Make sure they are consistent with CX.
  • Align goals for Brand and CX across the organization. Create teams to share data and insights.

The fact is that 80% of CEOs believe that their companies deliver very good Customer Experience but only 8% of their customers agree! This is a serious challenge and it results in part from a misalignment of CX and Brand (among other factors).  By better aligning Brand with CX, you establish a more consistent and emotionally appealing journey for the purchaser and create the opportunity to strengthen relationships and increase sales.

CX and Brand: they’re better together.

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CX’s second act – Value Creation

June 18, 2019

Karen Chandler

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If you want to know where the CX industry is headed, there is no place better than Forrester’s CX conference! #CXNYC was no exception. It was great to learn from CX practitioners and heartening to see everyone talking about, and getting ready for, CX’s second act. Here are three themes that really stood out for me from all the engaging conversations I had at #CXNYC.

1. Tech alone is not enough

Technology is a great tool that has helped us launch faster, bolder and bigger CX programs, but we must remember that it is a tool, not a strategy. Technology enables CX initiatives that in turn help us connect with our customers’ feedback. But technology alone doesn’t solve problems, you do! Measuring and understanding Customer Experience (CX) is as much of an art as a science, something lost with a “tech-only” approach. For more on tech’s role in CX, read this blog post. 

2. CX data is happier when it has company

CX programs by themselves only go so far. They allow you to talk to your current customers and solve their problems. They allow you to identify opportunities to deliver better on customers’ expectations. But they offer little or no insight into the company’s potential customers and their movement along the customer journey. CX data is most effective when combined with other business data – integrating Business and Brand data with CX feedback creates powerful strategic insights that help create business value.

3. Make your CX program yours

Your CX journey is uniquely yours. Make sure your CX program is tailored for your business and for your individual CX journey. The design and delivery of your CX programs can make or break your CX initiatives – but you don’t have to do it alone. Work with experts who will help you design a CX program that works for you.

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3 Key Takeaways from Confirmit’s 4th Annual B2B Summit

June 17, 2019

Sam Richardson

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Confirmit hosted their 4th Annual B2B Summit focused on one prominent and inspiring theme– how to be a CX Rockstar.

Whether you are knee deep in CX strategy or just starting out, everyone faces challenges on how to take the big next step. Even those who are running advanced CX measurement programs are still looking to keep things moving. Not sure how advanced your measurement is compared to other CX programs? Take our CX maturity assessment.

This year’s B2B Summit offered key takeaways to keep any CX professional seeking more value from their CX measurement and strategy. Some noteworthy ones included:

1. Beware of sameness

After some early wins, many CX professionals find themselves presenting the same stats and same dashboard to stakeholders. If you find yourself plateauing with your CX program, it could be time for a revolution. What does a CX revolution involve? According to SVP, Customer Experience Innovation at Confirmit, Claire Sporton, a CX program revolution involves shifting your focus from analyzing siloed data to integrating and pulling datapoints from throughout the organization to get the full view of your CX.

When you start to branch out your CX program beyond the hands of the core CX team and involve your entire organization, that you can start to gain momentum . Another key consideration is recognizing the need for analytics and expertise to move forward. Technology only solutions often run the risk of hindering the growth of your program. To learn more about how to maximize the value of your CX, check out our recent blog post: CX: The Art Behind the Science.

2. Empower your employees

Your employees and culture are what drive how employees interact with customers and inevitably your CX. CX starts within. For Joe Montano, Global Director of Customer Experience at Catalent Pharma Solutions, investing in the employees became the core focus to run a successful CX program. Nepa board member and former SAS CEO, Jan Carlzon, has often said “empowering employees is how a customer-centric strategy comes to life.” By providing the right tools, training and culture, your employees are a key component to driving the success of your CX. To learn more about empowering your employees, you can read more here.

3. Get everyone involved

I guess this nicely combines my first two takeaways, however throughout the day it was greatly emphasized the importance of involving every aspect of an organization to promote your CX initiatives. Everyone plays a part, and it is important that your CX program is governed, not led by CX team. CX teams running everything on their own burn out quickly and it is hard to drive change. By getting the right people involved in the right way you will create a lasting impact on the business.

Thanks to Confirmit for hosting a great event. We look forward to future events.

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Do-it-Yourself CX Software: What you don’t know can cost you

June 06, 2019

Sam Richardson

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In advance of next week’s Forrester conference – CX NYC: Change the Game – Leading Radical CX Innovation – we caught up with Nepa US Managing Director Ken Peterson to discuss a critical issue in CX – why Do-it-Yourself systems often aren’t as cost-effective as advertised and how the human element makes all the difference in creating actionable insights for companies.

Q. What is the origin of the “Do-it-Yourself (DIY) CX Software” or “Customer Experience Measurement” approach to CX?

A. Companies started to measure Customer Satisfaction at scale in the 2000s at the dawn of online research. Market Research teams would build bespoke platforms for clients to distribute these reports across the organization to democratize information about customer experience. Several Software as a Service (SaaS) firms built platforms that standardized feedback collection and reporting.

Q. How does this work in the real world?

A. It initially made it more efficient for companies of all sizes to measure customer satisfaction. Theoretically, it should be less expensive as well – though customer experience measurement platforms have invested in marketing a premium price that outpaces the value it delivers.

On the negative side – it’s boxed many companies in to a less dynamic approach and put the emphasis on quantity of feedback rather than quality or actionability. Many platforms over-emphasize tactical solutions to customer pain points, causing clients to invest in fixing one-off problems rather than addressing strategic issues.

If all you want is to measure CX performance, a DIY system should work. If you want to develop an experience advantage or deliver truly actionable insights, you’re likely to find its utility limited.

Q. How does this differ from a more consultative approach?

A. Ownership of the system delivering value – a consultative approach puts a seasoned CX leader at the heart of an engagement who takes responsibility for its success. The right technology is pulled in, eliminating waste or misuse of features. This saves money and adds value. It brings the art into the process that allows for greater focus and ultimately the kind of differentiation that creates competitive intelligence.

Q. How responsive is a DIY CX software approach to tactical shifts in a retailer’s market strategy or market conditions? The launch of a new advertising or email campaign, for example?

A. It offers the promise of allowing the user to quickly gain feedback to changing conditions. However, there are limits. It may insert unintentional bias to the data collected. Questions may be added until no one wants to complete the survey. Often, data continues to be collected whether or not the report is being used.

Ultimately, the CX measurement program may stop connecting to any internal KPIs. A DIY CX approach can also result in every department doing their own thing, without a holistic view of CX. Transactional CX, relationship CX, contact center CX and Digital CX end up living in their own worlds.

One final point can’t be emphasized enough – the CX program often is the wrong environment to measure and/or test new concepts or changes in business strategy. The CX program measures the execution among customers; however the program does not effectively measure the marketplace – it is a “customer only” view.

Q. What would you say are the insights that are most frequently missed by DIY CX Software?

A. The insights about the holistic end-to-end experience when programs are not properly connected. Strategic insights that include an external view of the marketplace at the corporate level. Strategic insights that can be used at the local/branch level. Finding the “right measure” for the company because there hasn’t been a review of the programs (individually or across the company) from an external perspective.

Q. What about the impact of Brand on the buying decision? How is that accounted for?

A. The Brand (with a capital “B”) usually isn’t accounted for properly in a CX program. When these programs start to fall under marketing teams, this will be viewed differently than when they sit with IT, operations and/or customer care. Unless a marketing team is deeply involved in the roll-out, there is almost no analyzed connection between Brand and CX. It is another silo within the organization that results in inefficiency.

Q.  What kind of in-house resources does it take to support a tech-only approach to CX?

A.  The DIY tech-only approach to CX is advertised as a cheaper alternative. The reality is that it takes many resources to execute on just the technology portion of the program. It often requires a full-time, experienced CX project manager who manages the deployment across the company, frequently with additional internal support for analytics and operations.

Then there are usually additional FTEs that must contribute from IT data operations, IT infrastructure, CRM/Loyalty department and company operations. Also, the tech-only approach will result in the organization having to build and maintain a training program to make sure program output is understood across the organization. This is often overlooked and when it is the result is that the outputs of the program are used in the wrong way for the wrong reasons.

Q. Taken as a whole, are DIY CX systems really as cost effective as advertised?

A. In our view, no. There are both less than obvious expenses and the cost of what they don’t uncover – the actionable insights they’re not designed to produce. It’s hard to put a price on that, but it’s very real and can be hugely expensive for an organization. What you don’t know can hurt you.

Interested in setting up a CX program? Or identifying and prioritizing insights from your existing one? Reach out to Ken Peterson directly to set up a call.

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3 Key Takeaways from CXPA’s Insights Exchange 2019

May 29, 2019

Sam Richardson

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Last week, Nepa sponsored the Insights Exchange 2019 in Salt Lake City. The theme of “Moving Mountains” was quite fitting and while there were many positive takeaways, I found the following insights to be the most impactful between the presentations and conversations I had with peers:

1. Customer Experience Still Needs to be Intentional

In ways, this ties in with my next point, but by itself it is still very relevant. I’ve often said to peers and clients that CX is an ongoing journey, not a destination. It doesn’t end with identifying the customer journey, measuring their emotions toward the experience or even connecting it with insights. I couple quotes from Ian Golding’s presentation:

• “It’s our job as CX professionals to educate on the importance of embedding the science of customer experience to enable differentiation.”

• “Courage – to be a CX Professional you need to have an exceptionally thick forehead for bashing against the wall. Courage, persistence and passion to do the right things for the right reasons.”

2. Tech Only Has Limitations

For years, I watched the industry gravitate towards “speed in insights,” however it was really just “speed in data.” Putting technology in place that will measure and report data that informs CX is a noble goal, but as I mentioned earlier, it is not the destination. It’s important to view data from one source for what it is, which is data from one source. A quote from Nepa CEO Fredrik Östgren reflects my core belief and reason for being in CX: “Research shouldn’t be conducted in isolation of the business, it should connect to business data and – ultimately – drive profitability.”

That often means more than one partner in supporting that CX journey. There are a variety of tools in the market place to help you along the journey, but it doesn’t mean they are all the right fit. In addition, is the tool being properly used? In speaking with a CX Industry Analyst recently, she mentioned in her view, 80% of companies are paying for technology features they don’t use or aren’t using properly. If you want to read more about this, I encourage you to read this short post.

3. Convergence of Brand Experience and Customer Experience

If you go back 50 years, the “brand image” was almost completely controlled by the brand messaging, which was controlled by the brand itself. Today with reviews, social media and earned media I would estimate that less than 10% of brand image is actually controlled by the brand.

One of the biggest factors emerging in brand image is the customer experience with the brand – which informs the reviews, social media and earned media. Surely we all have examples where an experience as a customer was broadcast to a group of individuals in some way. When I first entered the industry, I was told to estimate that a negative experience was discussed with ten people – usually close friends or family. Today, that can be shared with 100’s or 1000’s of individuals from our own couch. That’s brand power – but is it positive or negative? I’ve seen this convergence for quite some time, but I’d encourage you to read more about it here.