The First Step in Building a Customer Experience Program

By: Clarabridge Team

December 15, 2014

CEM Programs
CEM Solutions

You know your company needs to listen to your customers to increase satisfaction, and in turn, increase sales.  You’re gathering a good amount of feedback from customers, but you don’t have a strategy for analyzing that feedback and incorporating it into your business decisions. How do you help your business start putting customers first?

To take a step back, let’s look at the journey of building a CX program and what it takes to progress to the next step:

  • Unaware – This is you! This describes an organization that has a little interest in customer experience, but doesn’t have a customer experience program in place.
  • Dabbling – This is an organization that is starting to be aware of customer experience, but the program doesn’t have widespread internal buy-in.
  • Involved – Here, the organization has the beginnings of a formal, funded customer experience program.
  • Dedicated – This describes an organization at this level is fully invested in customer experience, with support from the executive team and formal processes that use CX data for business decisions.
  • Prolific – This is an organization that has customer experience as a fundamental part of the overall business strategy.
  • Advanced – This is your end goal! This describes organizations that have absorbed a customer-centric view-point, from the frontline to the board room, and have achieved true sophistication in providing customer experience.

So, you understand the game-changing benefits of customer experience – sparks of interest are flying and you need to now concentrate on laying the foundation for a solid CX program. How do you move from Unaware to Dabbling?

1. Prove the value of CEM – This can take several rounds, but it’s about educating the C-level and other company stakeholders about the benefits and value of CEM, and then proving it to them with real-world examples.

2. Make it a part of the different stakeholders’ visions – You’re going to have to sell CEM differently to different levels and departments within your organization. The CEO and top-level executives are going to want to hear about ROI, but other departments want to hear about how CEM will directly benefit them. You’ll have to work closely with internal stakeholders to identify their greatest needs and then sell, sell, sell.

3. Over communicate – It’s imperative that you over communicate the importance of CEM. Open every discussion with a reminder of, “this is why we’re doing this,” and stay in front of the leadership often to ensure that the project is always top of mind.

4. Get budget – Fortunately, CEM is easy to justify. Be sure to prove both the business-level and department-level ROI. Show how a formal CEM program can provide a 360-degree view of the customer. Have reporting and measurement in place to prove real-world benefits to stakeholders throughout the process.

As your organization progresses in its CX maturity, it gains a real competitive advantage. Customer experience can become not only a pervasive component of your company culture, but a key differentiator against your competition. The evolution has begun – don’t be left behind. It’s time to get started developing a truly customer experience-centric organization.

To learn more about building a CX-focused organization, read our eBook.