Customer Experience expresses the overall degree of satisfaction that the customer experiences during the relationship with the company and is the result of all interactions that have occurred throughout the entire journey.
Customer Experience Management is the discipline of designing the individual customer-business interactions that occur throughout the purchase journey. The objective of a Customer Experience Management strategy is to meet or exceed customers’ expectations and to increase their satisfaction, degree of loyalty, and propensity to spontaneously “testify” in favor of the brand.
If Customer Experience Management has taken a real leap forward in recent years, it is mainly due to the adoption of Customer Communication Management (CMM) tools. CCM, which can be considered as a strategy and as a tool, makes it possible to overcome the limitations of traditional communication to develop an omnichannel, interactive, and personalized communication, the only one capable of proving truly effective within contemporary markets that are so inextricably (inter)connected.
Therefore, if we shift the focus to how to improve the Customer Experience, we cannot possibly ignore the role played by CMM. Within business relationships, the communicative dimension is the one that, more than others, involves all the recipients of the message on an individual level, users who are now accustomed to actively using digital tools to fully participate in conversations with the brand.
It all starts with data: knowing customers to meet their expectations
To make the customer experience more fulfilling, such that consumers not only remain loyal but also evangelize others, it is essential to really get to know them. To have a broad and deep knowledge of your target audience—in order to create personalized experiences—you need access to information assets, collected on all the touchpoints scattered across the funnel and through the channels that your organization manages. Each interaction between consumer and company, in fact, produces data that the company can use to learn more about its customers, to communicate with them more effectively, and to formulate proposals that are even more in line with their wants and needs.
In this sense, data is an invaluable source. However, data is also a difficult resource to exploit, because it is produced in enormous quantities and it continues to grow exponentially as contact opportunities multiply. It’s also because data becomes increasingly urgent for different departments, sales and marketing in particular, in order to distinguish useful data from data that only causes “background noise” in a timely manner. The low quality of data, its poor ability to produce meaningful insights, and the progressively tighter restrictions on its use all represent critical issues on which the efforts of the most forward-looking companies are likely to focus in the near future.
Until now, it has mainly been structured data (demographic, transactional, and registry data) that has been used in creating customer profiles. However, in order to rely on a more accurate overview of today’s audience, you also need to include other types of data—that from social media, video, sensors, RFID, and geolocation, etc. To this information, which is organized through cross-channel modes, you must also add information that is produced during repetitive activities in the customer lifecycle and derived from the history of contacts, reports, and transaction summary documents. Likewise, an up-to-date assessment of the customer’s overall value and profitability, forecasting their future purchases, and analyzing their behavior, is no longer possible.
This is a mighty incoming stream whose management certainly poses a challenge to businesses—and not only in terms of IT infrastructure—but it also constitutes an incredible asset if we think of it as a “breeding ground” for brand initiatives, as raw material to be used to build communications that are designed to resonate more authentically with customers.
In the best of all possible scenarios, a company that intends to intercept, entertain, inform, and motivate its target audience must today draw on this knowledge and translate it into an accurate, centralized, and shared communications system. If we now shift our focus to the next aspect of the company-customer relationship, namely outbound content, we will see how, inevitably, organizations can no longer do without powerful and flexible solutions that can efficiently manage all channels, including traditional ones. Solutions such as those of Customer Communication Management that easily and immediately enable fundamental processes of creation, delivery, storage, and retrieval of external communications and activities that are crucial to business operations, such as new product introductions, renewal notifications, correspondence and documentation of claims, and billing and payment notices.
Each of these communications can occur through a wide range of media, channels, and outputs, such as email, SMS, instant chat, conversational artificial intelligence, and website pages. Through the timely management of communication across all interactions, the CCM helps improve the customer experience of specific touch points by fostering an understanding of audience wants and needs and helping customers make decisions faster.
How to improve the customer experience? By simplifying and enriching the consumer journey
The spread of digital technologies and their evolution in an increasingly customer-friendly direction continues to raise the level of expectations of consumers, who trust that they will use those same technologies within their purchasing paths, seamlessly.
On the other hand, the multiplication of company-designed moments of use and browsing opportunities on online touch points, and in general the increase in opportunities to read and listen to the brand narrative, ultimately result in the need for the company to adopt the most effective tools for managing a communication that becomes more and more complex every day.
The processes that need to be governed and guided involve the assembly of different types of content, numerous documents, and large amounts of data from various touch points and applications. In this sense, an effective CCM strategy that supports, enriches, and smooths the customer journey is essential for improving the Customer Experience. Effective Customer Communication Management:
- ensures that communications are correct, relevant, and aligned;
- implements additional personalization options;
- oversees the fulfillment of expectations across all channels;
- ensures continuous and frictionless distribution of communications;
- ensures business continuity;
- protects content ownership;
- ensures consistency across all touch points;
- provides a tool for mapping customer journeys and optimizes their design.
A well-structured CCM simplifies the customer journey and at the same time activates an empowerment process: customers gain autonomy and awareness every time they come into contact with the company through its communications, especially if these have interactivity. In doing so, the company deepens its knowledge of its customers, refines proposals based on the feedback it receives from their interactions, builds their loyalty with personalized initiatives, and enriches their journey with meaningful content and offers.
The future of CCM: three suggestions for improving the customer experience
Every touch point between the company and the customer is critical, and managing interactions—all interactions—is critical to delivering a great customer experience. Achieving excellence in customer experience management is a priority for companies in virtually every industry—from financial services to insurance, from health care to utilities, to name a few.
But if the question is no longer whether or not to invest in the customer experience but rather how to improve the customer experience, the main aspect that needs to be focused on, whether you’re investing in digital or mobile technologies, or if you choose to employ social media or print media, is definitely that of communication.
In an environment where markets and consumers continue to change relentlessly, the latest trends in corporate communication management predict the increasing implementation of CCM platforms for the immediate future, as they have in the recent past. Customer communication management strategies, in turn, are changing to adapt to the new dynamics.
In such an unstable scenario, what are the emerging trends that companies need to keep an eye on? We have identified three that are strategically important: empowering the customer, updating technologies, and plastically adapting to industry rules.
Empowering the customer
Over the past 15 years, mass digitization, the spread of mobile devices and social networks, and increasingly accessible connectivity have changed consumer behavior, often radically. We have gone from asking companies for information on a product or a service to informing ourselves by consulting a website, following the online reviews of other users or searching for answers on dedicated forums. It is the phenomenon of consumer empowerment, which we have already mentioned, that pushes companies to update their Customer Communication Management system to adapt it to those content and transmission modes that best suit an active and aware customer.
Staying up to date with new technologies
Product or service innovation in the field of communications—voice-activated technology, handheld devices, and the cloud, just to name a few—is now such an integral part of everyday life that companies cannot afford to lag behind in a rapidly changing technological environment. This trend, of course, also affects components and functionality of CCM systems, which must aim for increasingly rapid and intuitive modes of communication.
Adapting to the new regulation
Any industry is required to comply with a set of rules regarding communication with its customers or potential customers. With the advent of digital, the situation has become even more complicated, and delivering an excellent customer experience in a highly regulated industry can present quite a few problems. In addition, communications must be accessible to all, including those with disabilities. An advanced CCM system can offer valuable support in helping companies meet legal obligations and compliance with communication standards.
How to improve customer experience with Doxee’s dx
A Customer Communication Management strategy improves the customer experience because it enables organizations to design, manage, and deliver personalized, high-volume, on-demand communications across the entire customer journey.
Implementing a digitally facing Customer Communications Management (CCM) strategy means offering your company the opportunity to embrace digital transformation by radically changing the way you communicate, organically introducing personalization and multichannel. That’s what Doxee is proposing with its document experience dx, the first Customer Communications Management product—all in the cloud— that is dedicated to the creation, multichannel distribution, and archiving of communications.
Doxee document experience, aimed at the enterprise world, optimizes all communications, including those that are mandatory; it improves communication to customers by transforming it into a new and versatile tool for creating personalized conversations, with broad purposes and not strictly those that are transactional in nature.
In this way, communication becomes an important component in increasing corporate profitability.
For companies that must send significant volumes of communications on a daily basis, a CCM platform where you can manage processes through all possible channels, both traditional and digital, is essential. Doxee dx meets this need while completely relieving the company, particularly the IT department, of the operational burdens arising from a message sent on different channels.
From the customer’s point of view, Doxee dx ensures a truly multichannel experience. Communication, available on different channels, thus acquires a quality and continuity that matches what the contemporary user expects.
How, then, can you improve the customer experience? Thanks to CCM, which responds better than other tools and strategies to the change in consumer status that we have been talking about. A consumer who is now used to having a real dialog with companies, and who not only expects to be readily seen and heard, but also takes it for granted that he or she is known and recognized.