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What is Customer Experience Management?

Over the last few decades many business strategies have become more customer- focused. Customer Experience Management (CEM) is a business strategy that is designed to create loyal customers by managing each experience with a greater emphasis placed on the needs of the customer.

To be effective at CEM, organizations need to focus on creating an experience that is compelling for a customer to return, while reducing defects or dissatisfied customers. Within the strategy of customer experience management, a customer is typically in one of three profiles. These profiles are negative, non-committal, or advocates. The primary goal in CEM is to reduce the number of negative customer experiences, while moving the non-committal customers into the advocate category.

Customer experience is includes all encounters with the customer. These areas include advertising, employee interaction, store quality and appearance, as well as finally product satisfaction. To build loyalty with a customer, an organization needs to be aggressive at managing perception in all areas of the customer experience. Customer experience management is the strategy of ensuring all facets of the customer experience are monitored for quality and efficiency.

A dissatisfied customer directly effects the bottom line of an organization. These customers will typically deteriorate marketing strategies and influence potential new customers. These are individuals that have experienced bad customer service, which puts them in the negative profile category within customer experience management.

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The negative customer is not considered a lost cause as he can negatively influence new customers. Customer experience management strategies include managing and monitoring the success of resolving the issues of dissatisfied customers. A dissatisfied customer can become a non-committal or advocate of a organization if proper focus is applied to the area of concern.

A good customer experience is generally one in which the customer is met with qualified staff who are pleasant, knowledgeable, and able to quickly resolve an issue with one contact. Additionally, excellent experiences include having the employee recognize a customer, and be knowledgeable about the past interactions. This personalized approach gives the customer a feeling of ownership that builds long-term loyalty.

This strategy requires a comprehensive real-time view of the customer. Most Customer experience management strategies use information from various enterprise systems such as customer relationship management (CRM), enterprise resource planning (ERP), and billing. Additionally, the customer feed back systems including letters, surveys and e-mails are used as data elements to provide employees with the customer information they need at the time of any interaction. This data can then be used as a method of enhancing the customer experience to gain loyalty.

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