How customers view and interact with your brand is crucial in today’s marketplace. And considering that 86% of customers are willing to pay more for a better experience, companies need to focus on putting their best foot forward when creating touchpoints and interactions with customers along the buying journey.
It’s best to remember that customer experience (CX) is more than just making sure they receive and like your product. From search engine research and initial brand interactions to purchase and post-purchase check-ins, CX includes everything that creates an impression of your business.
Best part? With a strong CX strategy, companies can achieve higher customer satisfaction rates, reduce customer churn, and increase revenue, all while building a long-term customer base.
Sounds like a win-win, right? Because it is—no trick statements here! When customers are happy, they’ll spend more with you, and if they spend more with you, you’re happy, your boss is happy, and most importantly, your bank account is happy. All jokes aside, heavily infusing CX into marketing plans is the best way for your company to make satisfied, reoccurring customers.
But how do you create an impactful CX plan or ensure a great customer experience? I’ll show you! Here are seven things you can adopt to achieve HD-CX.
The Loyalty Loop: 7 Things that Make an HD Customer Experience
The first step in creating an HD-CX and mapping your customer journey is to create a Loyalty Loop. You might be asking yourself, ‘Andrew, what the heck is a Loyalty Loop?’. Well, I’m glad you asked! A Loyalty Loop is a series of micro-moments of interaction (MOI) and moments of commitment (MOC) that impact your possible buyer.
Think of moments of inspiration and commitment in the context of a spiral or funnel. Every MOI, like reading a blog, seeing an ad, or reading a post on LinkedIn, is meant to send your customer down the journey. And that brings them to a Moment of Commitment (MOC), like filling out a form or asking for more information. The loop begins the minute they trade their money, data, or time with your company for more information.
If your company can understand how consumers make their way through your Loyalty Loop, you can begin to create different MOIs that can lead to MOCs over and over again—aka creating a spiral or loop of customer loyalty and trust.
To start building better customer relationships, you’ll have to understand what your loyalty loop drivers are. Below are the seven things your company can do to create a Loyalty Loop and lay the foundation for an HD customer experience.
1. Raising Anticipation
Most sales reps don’t do much from scheduling the meeting to the meeting itself to raise anticipation for the next step in their customers’ journey. Instead, sales reps should get them excited along the way.
One of the easiest things to do is to create a curiosity gap—the gap between what they know and what they want to know. We can start to intrigue them simply by creating that gap. For example, this could be as small as creating an email that piques their interest. Sometimes it’s a little thing you pick up on that you can show them. But you do have to answer the curiosity gap immediately—you just have to address it. Give them what they were asking for.
2. Maximize the Honeymoon Phase
The honeymoon phase in the customer relationship is completely underutilized on the sales (and marketing) side. Take a moment to see where they are at the peak of excitement or enthusiasm. Use those moments to help your business and your relationship with those people. You can do these simple things while customers are at their happiest with your brand, such as asking for a testimonial or about upsell and cross-sell opportunities. Do it at the peak of their enthusiasm.
3. Reinspire the Customer
The end of the sale is not the end of the conversation. Moments of Inspiration (MOI) lead to new Moments of Commitment (MOC). How are we inspiring them to feel as they start to move through the buyer’s journey. Remember, they are on a long-term journey.
Inspire them when they’re at their lowest too. Every invoice you send out is a potential Moment of Inspiration (MOI). They say, “gee, should we be spending money on this?” Follow up with the right kinds of interactions that reinspire them. Like ‘here are the three major things we accomplished this month’. Pick the right re-inspiration for the right moment in the journey. It doesn’t have to be all at once. Tease to get them to the next step.
4. Answer Their Trigger Questions
After an MOI, answer their trigger question. It’s the first question that pops into their mind after the MOI. For example, they didn’t ask about certain future service costs, but you can anticipate that and bring it up in advance.
You can build a ton of trust by immediately answering their trigger questions. You’re also bridging the time gap (like on the phone). They might not have asked by email, but on the phone, they would have, or vice versa.
5. Remove Friction
This is the biggest one in the B2B world. Internal processes cause so much friction in pursuit of providing service or CX—it’s just how we work. But, before you can remove friction from your customer experience, you need to fully understand what your customer’s typical journey looks like.
For example, we need information. We could get this info from a form. To simplify the process, try updating your question template. Maybe remove nine of 11 questions on the form and only leave two—You’ll look easier to work with. You then know the next MOC will be easier.
6. Scale Camaraderie
Personalization is a two-way street. We want to show the customer that we’ve done our homework and understand their problems. But the critical second piece of the puzzle is the opposite: you’re not just personalizing for THEM, with their information and data, but personalizing it from OUR perspective, our brand. It’s called “scaling camaraderie.” You can build mutual trust and respect between your customer and the people behind your brand, such as introducing people behind the sales rep, like the person sending out all those marketing emails.
7. Crucial Concern
This is a super-secret one! If the MOC is filling out a form, the customer may wonder if you’ll call them immediately (which they usually don’t want!) You want to get the phone number, but they don’t want a call right away. Tell them in advance, “we won’t call unless you want us to. We usually call within 24 hours”. State those parameters right up front to put their mind at ease. Alleviate that crucial concern.
The more information you share, the better. Make it human: we can play nice—I pull back my curtain, you pull back yours. Transparency is useful. Show me instead of telling me. Take a screenshot of work in progress, etc. Shoot a video of someone on the team. Show me instead of telling me as often as you can.
Although it can traditionally be viewed as difficult to pinpoint the exact things that make a great customer experience, companies need to embark on the journey so they can begin to create better experiences for their customers. Setting yourself up with a vision, diving into your existing customers and their experiences across all platforms, and continually monitoring plans will help you to walk a mile in your customer’s shoes. From there, you can start to understand how customers perceive your brand. This will prove invaluable as you begin to test, implement, grow, and improve your go-to-market plans.
Want to discover more ways you can help guide customers along the buyer’s journey while creating an unforgettable experience for them? Download the guide “5 Steps to Fuel Growth for Marketing” to learn more tips, tricks, and best practices.
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