‘Customer Experience is today’s business benchmark, according to a blog post by Martin Zwilling published earlier this year on Forbes.com. In this post, Zwilling asks, “What is that customer experience that every modern marketer is talking about, and how do you measure it?” An equally weighty question that I often ask is, “how do you design a great customer experience?”
This question is particularly problematic in omni-channel customer call centers where interactions span multiple technologies and the customer experience can span vast distances that may affect connectivity. An equally weighty question is, how do you design a great customer experience?
Scrum Master’s View of Customer Experience
As a certified Scrum Master, I am always looking for ways to bring my entire team’s knowledge, positive attitudes, and passion into every project. Recently, I have also been thinking about the internal teams of Cyara’s customers, and particularly their call center IVR programmers and routing specialists. These individuals are, in reality, the customer experience architects for your brand. What is core to designing a customer experience that builds a real relationship instead of an annoying or frustrating customer experience that can harm your brand?
Core Values of Customer Experience
In his new book, Summit: Reach Your Peak and Elevate Your Customers' Experience, experienced business executive and recent Inc. Entrepreneur of the Year finalist F. Scott Addis, ties business success and your personal summit to elevating your customers’ experience. Addis lists these six specific recommendations as key differentiators for designing winning customer experiences:
- Listen to the individual customer. Every relationship requires listening as well as talking. You have to listen to your customer’s dreams, goals, passions, and aspirations.
- Exploit your product and service differences. A memorable experience has to have something different from the norm. You must be able to highlight these differences between your products and services.
- Demonstrate the value of your offering. The first step towards being able to demonstrate your value is being willing to find out what your customers want or need.
- Show your passion and creativity in every solution. Seek possibilities and don’t settle for what are merely prescriptions for solving specific problems.
- Demonstrate your personal commitment. When you’re talking to customers, focus 100 percent on them, and do all you can to determine and meet their needs. Remember, customers are the reason you do what you do.
- Shoot for the customers’ hearts. Engagement and an emotional connection will make a customer relationship the driving force for loyalty and differentiation.
Testing Your Customer Experience
Addis’s core values for customer experience are very closely aligned with how we see what we do at Cyara and the values that we endeavor to bring to every project. So, while these values go a long way toward designing great customer experiences, what happens after the design work is done? How do you continue to make sure the great experience you designed is what you are delivering? How do you know if the customer experience is consistent 24/7?
In production customer experience environments, we constantly see good customer experiences go bad because of inadequate testing, which usually falls into one of these three categories:
- Manual testing: To be assured that their customer experience is working, some companies use manual testing, but manual testing isn’t able to provide 24/7 test coverage. And manual testing is subject to human interpretation, which often provides different results for things like voice quality, IVR speech recognition, or the response time of the same IVR prompt.
- Limited testing: Some companies spend the money to build a customer experience that will wow customers, only to sporadically test, say 20% of the call flows that 80% of their customers use. While this is better than doing nothing, 80% of users will get a good experience, and 20% are ignored. Maybe that 20% will leave the company – or worse – tell their friends about the horrible experience they had.
- Isolated testing: Some companies do a great job of testing call flows and routing strategies, and this is a good start. But in today’s call centers, the network environment can be complex. Often, back-end systems can stall or crash the customer experience, and these issues are only discovered through end-to-end testing of the entire experience.
Cyara Cloud Testing Strategy
Cyara helps customers rapidly innovate while reducing development costs and minimizing the risk of customer-facing defects. As the world’s fastest growing provider of omni-channel customer experience testing and monitoring solutions, the Cyara Platform delivers millions of flawless interactions every day for our customers.
Cyara’s Cloud-based testing platform will monitor the customer experience and alert you if there is a failure. How does this work? An easy-to-use interface enables you to create test cases to monitor your call flows and routing strategies. You can then set up a campaign with parameters that control the date, time, length of calls, and number of concurrent calls to test your customer experience strategy.
Cyara can show you how to start today with simple customer experience testing that can grow into a comprehensive customer experience strategy. Or, you can get started with a free 30‐day monitoring trial. Sign up today and find out how you can have a consistent customer experience 24/7 with the Cyara cloud platform.