The 3Cs of customer experience are consistency, consistency and consistency.
Michael Haisten, our principal consultant, explains how our low code automation platform helps our clients and partners deliver a consistent customer experience in weeks not months.
Besides bringing best-of-breed AI and automation capabilities, our solution harmonizes existing systems, channels and processes to elevate your customer experience.
The Most Powerful Customer Service Tool
Consistency is an exceptionally powerful customer service tool, particularly in today‘s world, where competition has never been greater, and both consumer choice and empowerment are increasing.
Of course, getting consistency right can be tricky, particularly given the proliferation of channels, which has led to customers triggering an increasing number of interactions with companies as they seek solutions to their challenges. This, in turn, means that they are creating clusters of interactions across multiple channels. It’s vital to service each of these interactions with the same aplomb, in order to deliver a quality cumulative experience. For consumers, their overall customer journey is more important than any individual interaction.
There is a perceived expectation that every customer has when conducting a service-related interaction and it is critical to always meet these expectations if you are to deliver a consistent experience. Achieving this will demonstrate that you care and that you view customers as individuals – customers always want to feel like their problem means something to you. They want to feel that you have their best interests at heart and are genuinely eager to assist them.
By ensuring consistency, you, in turn, show that you care about how you engage and deliver service to customers.
3 Key Areas for Creating Consistency in Customer Service
So, how do you go about creating this level of consistency?
For one thing, it’s necessary for employees across the organization, from salespeople to customer service staff, to meet regularly to share problems and possible solutions to customer service-related issues. A critical element of consistency lies in breaking down silos between departments. Furthermore, you can conduct online surveys and invite customers to provide feedback on their experiences with your organization, in order to learn what is most important to them. Once you are aware of what the key issues are, you can fix them immediately. In addition, monitor customers on all their social streams to catch praise or dissatisfaction, both of which you can learn from.
In addition, always provide clients with a time frame for expecting your response and consider setting up automated responses to incoming client emails, to ensure nothing falls through the cracks.
When it comes to demonstrating your company’s consistency in customer service, there are three key areas of focus. Naturally, you need to focus on delivering customer journey consistency. This means having clear policies, rules, and supporting mechanisms to ensure consistency during each and every interaction with a customer.
Since the customer journey more often than not touches different parts of the organization, you may need to specifically create internal teams that are responsible for the end-to-end customer journey across these functions.
#1 Consistency Across Channels and Touchpoints
After all, we now live in an omnichannel world, and it’s crucial to ensure that whatever channel, or even multiple channels, the customer chooses to use, they receive the same level of service across each one. The greater the variability in their experiences, the less likelihood of the customer ultimately being happy with the service received – variability is, after all, the very opposite of consistency.
#2 Consistency In the Emotional Connection
The second area of focus needs to be emotional consistency. You need to engender positive customer experience emotions at all times. This builds trust and helps you forge a deeper and more meaningful relationship with clients. The greater the emotional connection between your customer and your business, the higher the customer loyalty. After all, nothing is more trustworthy than consistency.
#3 Consistency Across Communications and Actions
Finally, your organization should focus on delivering communication consistency. Your brand is driven by more than simply promises made and promises kept. It is also about ensuring that customers recognize when you have delivered on those promises. This means you should proactively shape your key messages and customer communications to consistently highlight such delivery.
Focus on Continuous Improvement
Achieving all of the above will mean you have to constantly track progress, effectiveness and predict opportunities, which may require your business to rethink both its metrics and analytics, in order to properly report on the customer journey, rather than individual touchpoints.
Furthermore, it is critical to immediately fix those areas where you have identified negative experiences as being common. Reducing bad experiences, even when your service is not necessarily at an exceptional level yet, will help to give the customer a stronger feeling of consistency.
Perhaps most importantly of all, you must bear in mind that the overall customer journey includes much more than just the customer service aspect. Everything from pre-sale engagement through to after-sales service forms part of this journey. So true consistency will encompass every single aspect of your organization.
Customers today have far more control than they did in the past. They’re also increasingly perceptive and pay attention to every little detail. Therefore, your business simply cannot afford to compromise on any component of the customer journey. Customers expect the same level of service quality across each and every stage of the customer journey. The only road to true success is to pay attention to detail, offer the highest quality service possible and ensure that every one of your people stays focused on maintaining the high standards you set for your business. There is little doubt that your customers today expect that.