What does an exceptional customer experience look like?
The details may vary depending on the individual and the product or service, but the customer experience should deliver at least one (hopefully more) of these:
- Some sort of greater health or wealth
- Improvement through cost savings or time savings
- A company/brand vision or mission that causes the customer to take positive action either as a purchase or by referral or influence with others
If your clients do not perceive that you deliver any of these elements, then you need to start finding ways to incorporate one or more of them into your service delivery. And you need to do it quickly; we live in a digital age of instant response and instant gratification. To paraphrase an old adage, “Time (and a next-generation client) waits for no one.”
And you cannot depend on past experience of what once satisfied clients to help you build a truly exceptional customer experience for today. Different demographic groups – Baby Boomers, Gens X and Millennials – can have different expectations and preferences regarding the customer journey, which can impact how they perceive the customer experience. Here are some examples:
- Baby Boomers tend to be independent. But, when they need help, they expect to deal with a person, and they want first-call solutions with all the information they need to make an informed decision.
- Members of the X generation are fairly computer-literate and self-reliant. They tend to prefer informal, casual and high-tech communications. They expect service to be fast, efficient and cost-effective.
- Millennials (a.k.a. Gen Y) are today’s new adults. They expect you to serve them where they are and when they want. They are more mobile and Internet-savvy than the other two groups, and they expect you to be as technologically savvy as they are. They are also more group-oriented and will gather information from family, friends and online resources.
Using Data to Inform Customer Experience
It’s also crucial to be aware of, gather and incorporate data into your customer experience planning.
In a McKinsey report from 2016, executives looking to improve customer experience at a major airport discovered a surprising insight into the customer experience with security screening. One of the drivers of the customer experience was moving smoothly through security.
We’ve all been in and grumbled or heard grumbling about the long checkpoint lines. However, through data gathering, the executives discovered that the customer’s perception of a satisfying security checkpoint experience had more to do with the behavior of the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) agents than with time spent in the line.
Only by studying the situation and gathering data were the airport executives able to unearth the actual point along the customer journey that had the biggest impact on customer experience – agent behavior as opposed to lines.
So, how can you deliver an exceptional customer service experience without spending a lot of money on technology, data learning or expanded service offerings that resonate across the generational groups?
It is not as daunting a task as you might think.
- There are technology service platforms that you can access or partner with to bring cost-effective and up-to-date technology into your business processes and offerings.
- Read, observe and engage with your clients and prospective clients through social media and digital marketing. Even Baby Boomers are on Facebook and Twitter.
- Be human, transparent and authentic. Your expertise and experience are valuable, but your empathy, understanding of client needs and listening skills are just as valuable, if not more so at times.
At LegacyShield, we offer a thoughtfully developed and designed enterprise and advisor platform to help you cost-effectively manage information and reach out to clients and prospects in keeping with their expectations and preferences. We’ve done the research and development. We have the knowledge and expertise. All you need to do is experience the benefits to your business by taking advantage of our free demonstration offer.
You’ll see first-hand how we can deliver an exceptional customer experience for both you and your clients at a surprisingly affordable cost.