by MTHULISI SIBANDA in Cape Town
CAPE TOWN – AN expert has dissuaded organisations from over-investing on innovation, delighting the customer or correlating data amid the performance gap between customer experience leaders and fellow competitors widens.
Ed Thompson, Vice President and distinguished analyst at Gartner, said establishments must ignore three myths in order to achieve a superior customer experience.
Speaking at the Gartner Symposium/ITxpo in Cape Town, Thompson said Gartner research established that the return on investment (ROI) of meeting customer expectations, and making their interactions effortless, was high.
However, as organisations invested to exceed expectations and delight the customer, and therefore drive up customer loyalty and advocacy, the chances of gaining a positive ROI were far lower.
“It’s not that investing to delight the customer doesn’t work but its likelihood of working is lower,” said Thompson.
He said many organisations were inconsistent in the delivery of their customer experience strategy.
“While they are aiming to delight in one part of the organisation, they still require effort from the customer in another part. We recommend that organisations don’t delight, but rather focus on being effortless.”
On innovation, Thompson said with all the new possible technologies to use in the cause of a superior customer experience, many organisations strive to be unique before they had examined what was already working in their own industries.
The expert said most innovation was an imitation of an existing successful investment in a different geography or an adjacent industry yet too many companies were overlooking the benefits of imitation.
“You don’t need to come up with everything yourself. We recommend organisations don’t only focus on innovation, but rather consider the benefits of imitation,” Thompson said.
On correlating data, Thompson said organisations were better served by understanding what customers were trying to achieve rather than monitoring demographics or psycho-graphic information.
“Rather than just looking at studying customer data, you need to examine the needs that arise during your customer’s lives. We recommend that you don’t correlate — but understand the jobs to be done.”
Thompson argued the aforementioned common myths were overrated.
“The most successful companies avoid over-investing in these directions, and you do not want to do it either,” he concluded.
– CAJ News