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Expert reveals secret to unlocking the 'value' of CX

Customer experience across both B2B and B2C is evolving fast. So how can organisations adapt? Rockstar CX founder, James Dodkins, recently appeared on AZK Media's podcast, Target Market, to discuss the four ways to create better CX and the importance of capturing authentic customer stories.

James is named The UK's number one CX Influencer by Customer Experience Magazine and was once a legitimate, award-winning rockstar playing guitar in a heavy metal band touring globally. He uses this unique experience to energise, empower and inspire his clients and their teams as a 'Customer Experience Rockstar'.

It’s tough times for CX leaders, with budgets being slashed and a volatile economy dampening spirits. How can CX leaders continue to build great customer experiences at scale in tough times?

If people were doing customer experience right in the first place, things shouldn't really need to change too much. Fundamentally, customer experience isn't really about the things that you do. It's about your mindset and your philosophy towards customers. It can be boiled down to a few simple things: understand who your customers are, understand what their successful outcomes are, and their needs, and then build experiences to deliver them.

Can you share any examples of who is getting it right?

The one example that I always come back to is Amazon. Basically, they've set the standard, even before the pandemic, one click ordering, next day delivery, their whole system was geared up to excel in a pandemic, technically.

They didn't miss a beat, nothing changed, the service you got from Amazon if anything, it got better. I think many other companies are trying to live up to that and are going to have to start Amazon-ifying themselves.

Let’s take a look at highlighting the value of CX. Do you think a lot of companies still don’t understand what good customer experience strategy really is, or value its potential?

Yes, and I think it's probably our fault as customer experience professionals, we got to take the blame for it. We are really crappy at stating our case, we're really good at going look at all these statistics you don't care about that tells you that customer experience is good.

The executives look at and go, okay, that's nice and everything, but you can find statistics to prove whatever point you want. We're super crappy at being able to link what we do on a daily basis to the bottom line.

If you want an easy way to do it, all you've got to do is link the effort of your customer experience to four things: acquisition, loyalty, wallet share, cost. They're the four key things.

At AZK Media, we’re passionate about customer advocacy programs, and believe great customer advocacy can be a powerful way for companies to celebrate the success stories of customers they’ve helped. What do you think are some key factors that make a great customer advocacy program?

Good question. The biggest thing is authenticity, trying to capture the authentic stories that customers are telling. You can systemise it, you can go out to customers, and do feedback, surveys, etc, and try to pull the good, verbatim out of it. Find those organic stories, the stories that customers share themselves online, not the ones they've been 'coerced' to tell.

If you're going to be putting systems in place to find these authentic stories, then really make a big deal of them, share them!

Whether it be sending out an email blast to everyone in the company, whether it be producing a magazine that you circulate internally, whether it be that you put a video together at the end of every week, or the end of every month talking about, hey, look, these are the cool things that have been happening with our customers.

There's a lot of people in companies, employees that work so hard on a daily basis, but never actually get to see how the work they do positively impacts customers' lives. To be able to allow them to see that the work they're doing on a daily basis actually is, you know, changing people's lives making people's lives better. It's a super powerful thing.

For organisations looking to partner with the right CX leader, what qualities should they be looking for?

Probably the same qualities they're looking for in anyone. You can hire for attitude and you can hire for aptitude. Only one of those things can be taught. Try to find people who actually align with your core values as a business. And if they've got the right mindset if they've got a passion. That's what you want to look for. The technical ability can be taught.

When it comes to CX, what should organisations STOP doing, and what should they START doing in 2021?

Stop asking your customers what they want, because it's as effective as asking your kids what they want for dinner. They're going to say, cookies, and jelly beans, and cake and cookies all on top of a pizza. The problem is, as parents or guardians, you know that that's not really what they need, even though they might want it.

We need to think about this when it comes to customers, Understand them to such a deep level that you can realise without them even knowing what their successful outcome is. Once you understand what that successful outcome is, you can say well, what are the needs that will deliver that successful outcome.

Customers only really want three things anyway, they want more of what you're doing, they want what you're already doing, but bigger or more of it. They want it faster than you are currently doing it now and they want it cheaper than you're currently doing it now.

What excites you most about CX?

The chance of getting back on the stage and doing some events, again, that excites me the most and just enjoy this new and fact-changing landscape.

Target Market is a podcast series by AZK Media where the world’s most premium thought leaders across technology, marketing and data come together to share their insights.

This article was published on Little Black Book Online


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