The Customer Experience: Building a Customer-Centric Organization


by James D. Roumeliotis

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It doesn’t take a genius to realize how few companies these days actually “Walk the talk”. What does this mean, you ask? I refer to “the total customer experience”.

Richard Owen, vice president of Dell online worldwide, says: “It’s the sum total of the interactions that a customer has with a company’s products, people, and processes. It goes from the moment when customers see an advert to the moment when they accept delivery of a product and beyond.

Sure, we want people to think that our computers are great. However, what matters is the totality of customers’ experiences with us: talking with our call-center representatives, visiting our Web site, buying a PC, and owning a PC. The customer experience reflects all of those interactions.”

You can claim that Richard Owen would say this considering the customer centric position of Dell and the nature of their business. However, his poignant statement is applicable to any business of any size. Having a vitally active and dynamic Customer Relations Policy is should be crucial to your business.

If your staff is inadequately trained, this lack of insight into CRM only aggravates the problem. When we act as clients ourselves, we can clearly see this process in action. Just pick up the telephone and call a company, which does not value CRM. It can be an exasperating experience.

People love to hate the phone tree where you have to go through a maze of menus until you eventually get to speak to a human. To make matters worse, there are companies that outsource their call center offshore to a country where employees have a peculiar accent and pronunciation not well understood by the average North American or European – and who simply follow a script they can’t deviate from.

Common intelligence tells us that it shouldn’t be this way. How a customer is dealt with reflects on the integrity of the brand, and the image of the company in the mind of the consumer.

Out of 362 leading companies surveyed, 80% believe they deliver a superior customer experience, but only 8% of their customers agree, states Bain & Company, a leading management consultancy firm. Moreover, the larger the market share of the firm in question, the greater the risk that this firm will take its customer base for granted.

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6 Comments

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6 responses to “The Customer Experience: Building a Customer-Centric Organization

  1. This is the best written article I have seen that deals marketing, the universe and everything. It eliminates confusion on terminology and defines abruptly and clearly what business must know if it cares and intends to be really competitive in this new-era.

    Thank you for sharing, I hope this is not an unconventional strategy and well done for nailing it!

  2. Nice article with lots of great thoughts, facts and examples of companies who are finally getting the message about what experience means. This article really begins to expand upon what Alvin Toffler talked about in the 70’s how brands in the future will be experience led or we will live in an experience economy. Walt Disney being an excellent example of how a company has been sharing the ultimate family fantasy experience for decades and through that experience sold products and hence came business growth.

    The key element here is that brands need to change/adapt there internal culture and thinking to become an experience led company. And, as you have highlighted we are already starting to see this happening more and more.

    Talking about Twitter – I watched an episode of Greys Anatomy on Thursday night and what was really interesting was how during one of the surgical procedures they were tweeting each detail on what was happening at any one time – enabling interns from across the world to share in a surgical procedure – and allow questions and answers to be filtered through. This was an excellent example of how effective new social media platforms can be for brands who want to join in the engagement revolution.

    Thanks again.

  3. truemarketingadventures

    Terrific article, as all of yours are. Consumers have more control, thanks to a new sales channel called on-line shopping as well as the proliferation of social media. Companies are being forced to upgrade their CRM programs and for some, to simply embrace it. Surprisingly, there are still many Fortune 500 companies that are ignoring it. In my opinion, that is the fault of only one person, the CEO.

  4. Pingback: The Customer Experience: Building a Customer-Centric Organization « Serve4Impact

  5. Pingback: Brand Refresh: Re-branding Through a Meaningful Transformation | Unconventional Business Wisdom for the refined entrepreneurial mindset - by James D. Roumeliotis

  6. Pingback: The Sensuous Brand: How to create allure with products and user experience | Unconventional Business Wisdom for the refined entrepreneurial mindset - by James D. Roumeliotis

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