Kantar TNS analysis shows that businesses may think their CX is working – but it isn’t.
Kantar recently sponsored the Insight Show in London, with speakers from across the business taking to the stage at our stand to present some of the latest research and methods from their operating brand. John White of Kantar TNS spoke on day one about the increasingly complex idea of ‘customer experience’, and how crucial it is for brands to get right.
‘Brands have become customer obsessed, and rightly so. The focus on Customer Experience is greater than ever, with more C Suite appointments in this domain, and CX spend set to reach an all-time high. £5.9bn was spent on CX in 2017; it’s predicted to be around £17bn by 2022,’ says John.
‘And the ROI can be proven. Some published examples include Wells Fargo, who reduced churn by 1% and made £16 million in net profit; GM increased satisfaction by 1% leading to an addition £512 million in profitability; AT&T improved conversion effectiveness by 1% and made £801 million in revenue as a result. We have plenty more client examples proving that CX is crucial.’
The problem is that few people can point to exactly HOW a one point increase in NPS will impact ROI. Moreover, the differing perceptions of brands and customers is staggering. ‘Our Pulse Checks reveal that while 91% of CEOs believe they deliver a superior experience, just 30% of their customers agree,’ notes John.
So how do you engage emotionally with customers? You turn the mirror on yourself, John says. ‘Brands need to focus on what the customers are valuing and take a long hard look at whether they are truly customer-centric. Interestingly, 86% of customers said they would pay MORE for a better service. What does this mean? It means that the human touch is seen as a differentiator that’s worth more for customers. So while organisations might want to invest in AI and bots, the relationship managers, greeters and customer-facing human capital is what people truly value.’
Customers want to be understood. They are demanding service in context, with brands having to actually use what they know about customers. ‘Five years ago, brands were clambering for data, now they have more than they know what do to with. The idea of building a single customer view has by no means gone away. And now, savvy customers expect context and personalisation more than ever before.’
Customers are impatient and time poor, John claims, and technology (and social media) has enabled and encouraged customers to feed back what they want, when they want.
‘As customers get tired of surveys, brands must make it easy for them to share how they feel, when they feel it, in a way that works for them. In CX land, text analytics is becoming increasingly critical to battling this.’
‘Society is embracing diversity, with a very real expectation that brands will do the same. Businesses are backing diverse initiatives, which effects CX massively,’ says John. ‘People and customers are making it clear what they stand for, and brands are reacting and align accordingly. Whether it’s the choice of newspaper on a train or the environmental credentials they adopt, brands are openly and publicly expressing their views, showing a human side that impacts on the experience customers have with them.’
Customers expect to be valued, responded to and treated well. Closing the feedback loop ought to be a top priority for brands, but this doesn’t appear to be the case. ‘I complete a lot of surveys… it’s an occupational hazard,’ says John, ‘And I often write ‘please contact me’ on the forms. Very rarely do they actually get in touch – so do brands truly value what their customers are telling them?’
John concludes: ‘At Kantar TNS we believe that organisations that truly embrace the above trends tend to have the following characteristics:
1) Insight – they have a view of all of the key moments that matter in the customer’s experience and measure/survey against these moments to get feedback at the right time
2) Platforms – they have technology that allows them to see real-time feedback from their customers and analyse the data to get to the root causes that really turn the dial for the customer
3) Activation – it’s all well and good having surveys; it’s even better to have a platform that allows you to analyse the data; however, successful organisations in the customer experience space are embedding a culture of the customer across the whole business
4) Analytics – finally, organisations that are leading the charge on customer experience are using the data that they have to truly understand the key moments that turn the dial, and also the RoI of each stage of the journey – helping to prioritise investments even further.’