Driving Customer Loyalty By DoingCXRight

A Case of Doing CX Wrong

It boggles my mind when great brands make bad decisions that directly impact customer experiences. I recently encountered a situation that clearly demonstrates an example of Doing CX incorrectly. Continue Reading →

crowdfunding save toysrus

Would You Pitch In To Save Toys “R” Us For Your Children To Experience? #ToysRUsGoFundMe

Last week we laid out the big moves that the leadership of Toys ‘R’ Us failed to take to evolve with customer needs. This week, billionaire Isaac Larian set up a GoFundMe campaign to raise 1Bn and save 400 of the remaining 735 US stores.  He is blaming the debt connected to the private equity owners for the epic failure of the brand. Would you donate to the campaign?

I would not. Here is why.

Today, social media empowers real time conversations between brands and consumers. Inspiring brand leaders have a real time communications tool to speak to their customers and take accountability for their actions. Social media equips brands like KFC to manage their mistakes brilliantly and turn them into meaningful connections with customers. Even with these tools, Toys ‘R’ Us leaders are quiet. Nobody is “coming out” and taking ownership of the destruction of an iconic brand. The company gave a flat statement that after they filed for bankruptcy last September they had a “bad holiday season.” That lack of accountability and transparency displays either that the leadership of Toys ‘R’ Us still does not understand its crucial role in the company’s failure to adapt, or that they are afraid to own their actions. Either way, this does not sound like a team that deserves a bail out.

Did you feel like the brand management did anything different this year during the holiday season? Did you see any creative retention or acquisition campaigns? Any coupons in your mailboxes to draw you in to the stores? Were there any smart partnerships to make a difference in your experience with the brand?

We all know that ad campaigns are expensive. But a national activation campaign and clever promotions and sales are not that draining on the balance sheet. So no, I will not pay to support a leadership that did not show creativity to boost sales and engagement during the holiday season and is not showing accountability or taking ownership now.

Last, but not least, what are we being asked to fund, exactly? Our past, our memories, or the future for our children? CNN made an emotional clip with ads from the past and a kid crying that the store closed.

The iconic jingle does stand for the joy of kids since 1948. Toys “R” Us was the brand of children for the last 70 years. Yet, when I needed a last minute toy for my niece last Christmas, Amazon was the brand that had same day delivery for Prime customers. This last season, when I needed a robot that could play with my nephew, Amazon was the one selling it. I am not sure what we will be saving with this campaign. Our children’s future, or our own memories of the past? And you know what? We can keep our memories in our hearts for FREE. And our children’s future might be in the next gen toys store that has not been created yet.

 

 

*All opinions expressed on the DoingCXRight Blog and site pages are the authors’ alone and do not reflect the opinions of or imply the endorsement of employers or other organizations.

Delight Customers Without Strings Attached​

Most people enjoy receiving gifts on their birthdays. They get a sense of joy when their favorite brands give them monetary awards. It is a smart business strategy that builds brand loyalty but only if done authentically and without requiring customer actions Continue reading “Delight Customers Without Strings Attached​”

The End Of The Customer Journey Matters Just As Much As The Beginning

Many companies spend a lot of time and budget on acquiring new customers. They focus on driving satisfaction in the early stages of the journey (Learn & Buy) and ignore customer experiences and sentiments once payment is received. This is often the case for Continue reading “The End Of The Customer Journey Matters Just As Much As The Beginning”

Brand Image ROI

Two weeks ago we discussed the power of employee engagement for your brand and the true meaning and ROI of a working corporate culture. Today we will examine the business case of the engaged customer, the powerful brand image and the brand loyalty it generates – loyalty that drives repeat purchases, higher revenues and more engaged customers.
 
An engaged customer requires the investment of the ongoing conversation. The “conversation” dollars go to social media campaigns, closed-loop systems for customer feedback, and a responsive loyalty customer service, among other customer experience levers.
 
Invest in people as much as product
 
Two weeks ago, I received a complaint from a JetBlue customer. In order to keep the conversation going with this customer, I had to relay the information to the teams that were accountable for his experience and get back to him with a comprehensive and empathetic feedback about his experience. CX professionals call this close loop, but close loop is a policy. My taking the effort to connect with people across the organization and CARING to get answers is employee engagement on my part, and that is generated by our corporate culture.
 
This culture is what maintains customer engagement and, which, as a result will create an ancillary purchase in the future. Often, people and service are more important than the product of an organization.  People and service build an organization’s brand image when customers interact with the brand. Customer experience relies more on human interactions with the brand than on the technology that enables those interactions.
 
Empathy and Innovation
 
Magazine Luiza is another great example of impacting ancillary sales and seeing a 35% ROI as a result of deliberate investment in empathy and innovation.  The Brazilian virtual store offers products on credit to the under-served customers in rural areas. Customers can see pictures of their desired products then go home and wait for the delivery in the next 48 hours.
 
To achieve loyalty and repeat business, Magazine Luiza also functions as community centers that offer free internet, literacy, cooking and basic banking classes. This investment contributed to the build out of a strong emotional connection between the brand and its audience, transforming Magazine Luiza into a powerful lifestyle brand to its customers. Even customers apprehensive of taking credit visit a place where a friendly face walks them through the experience of borrowing money while their child learns how to write for free.
 
The brand image of growth and development that come from the education components Magazine Luiza provides is, in a way, transferred to the “product” of buying on credit.  Once customers are empowered to buy on credit initially, they return to buy more things because each of those purchases makes them feel economically empowered.
 
Engaged customers are the blood of every business
 
Without engaged customers, business cannot grow. They provide the steady cashflow and the free cashflow that allow a business to invest in products and customer acquisition. The ROI of engaged customers lies in the growth of the organization and the incremental revenue that ensues. Depending on the growth stage of a particular organization, that ROI also can mean an organization’s survival.
*All opinions expressed on the DoingCXRight Blog and site pages are the authors’ alone and do not reflect the opinions of or imply the endorsement of employers or other organizations.
DoingCXRight

How To Turn Mistakes Into Positive Customer Experiences

No company is perfect. It is inevitable that employees will make mistakes. The impact on brand image is not necessarily related to WHAT happens as much as HOW employees handle a problem. I recently encountered a situation, which in the end Continue reading “How To Turn Mistakes Into Positive Customer Experiences”

Loyalty Program Success Depends On Great CX

An Important Lesson In Retaining Customers

Loyalty programs are a great way for companies to motivate people to return and buy again and again. Customers will continue subscribing or purchasing especially when they can earn points that are redeemable for products and services they perceive as Continue reading “An Important Lesson In Retaining Customers”

returns and refunds impact customer purchasing decisions

​An Unexpected Driver Of Customer Purchasing Decisions

Online shoppers often determine which stores to buy from based on their understanding return requirements upfront. According to UPS consumer surveys, “66% of shoppers review a retailer’s return policy before making a purchase. 15% abandon a cart when Continue reading “​An Unexpected Driver Of Customer Purchasing Decisions”

Driving Return Customers

How To Turn Your Customers Into Repeat Purchasers

The smallest gestures by frontline employees can be a significant reason shoppers turn into repeat buyers. I was reminded of this recently when purchasing at a large department store. Upon bringing my new clothes to the cashier,

Continue reading “How To Turn Your Customers Into Repeat Purchasers”

VP of Listening, brand image, future purchases

One Person Can Make Or Break A Brand’s Image

We all interact with companies when shopping for products and services. Sometimes we talk to representatives in person, such as at a retail store, while other times we chat online or call customer care. Regardless of where the interaction occurs, Continue reading “One Person Can Make Or Break A Brand’s Image”

Social Media, Customer Experience, Brand Image

How Does Social Media Affect Customer Experience?

Social Media is the only real time channel for successful brands to manage customer experience and brand management.

Customer Perspective

Social Media is the Voice of the Customer.  That voice shares with the world the customer experience of brands. When it is  good, it becomes brand ambassador and promoter. When it is bad that voice erodes brand equity and tarnished the existing brand image. This year Pepsi tried to be relevant and used social racism protests for the set up of its latest ad. The backlash on social media was a an immediate customer engagement that Pepsi had to manage to keep the intended brand message on point. The perception of the customers did not match the intention of the brand. When JetBlue was redesigning the JFK lobby in New York we hoped to hear comparisons to the Apple store on social media as a sign that we have built the experience we imagined. The tweets came and we knew. Our brand message has been received.

Social media is a collaborative space for the customer to engage with brands on products design and usability. Customers discuss product specifications and, in some  cases, build their own products. Glossier’s best-selling product was produced entirely on the feedback of customers on social media. Regardless of brand strategy, today’s engineers and designers must tune in to social media and allow the customer to co-create products and services.

Today customer experience is equal to social media. Customers expect to self-serve on social media. They look for real time recovery of their experiences and expect the brands to listen at all times. When an airline cancels a flight, customers reach out on twitter and Facebook to rebook themselves on the next flight or book a hotel if the flight is not the same day.  Effective brands leverage these various conversations to build brand engagement and loyalty. The brand becomes another friend on social media. A loyal and helpful friend that listens and builds experiences with the customer.

Brand Perspective

Social Media is a real time channel for brands to engage with the customer. It is a tool to build customer expectations for the product and service experiences to follow. The brand can communicate product features and educate the audience on a specific topic. If these messages match the actual customer experience the brand equity undoubtedly grows and the connection with the customer gets stronger.

Social Media is a measure for brands to assess if the experiences perception of the customer matches the experience intention of the brand. Successful brand  managers  not only have  social media accounts, but also utilize them effectively to communicate their brand image and listen if the message is received or no. They use social media to make things right when they go wrong and offer self-service options for operational recovery and self-help.  For the authentic brand social media is competitive advantage. It is the channel to manage customer experience and build brand engagement. The brands that understand that first will not only win the millenials tomorrow, but every customer who expects relevant and personal customer experience today.

 

 

*All opinions expressed on the DoingCXRight Blog and site pages are the authors’ alone and do not reflect the opinions of or imply the endorsement of employers or other organizations.

"Show value, create an experience and always strive to exceed customer expectations."

Delivering Unexpected Value Drives Happiness & Referrals

Great customer experience matters and delivering unexpected value is a big part of the equation.

My passion around this topic started when I received a package in the mail on a random afternoon. I was not anticipating a large box to be delivered, especially with a label that read “To Stacy, From Stacy.” Continue reading “Delivering Unexpected Value Drives Happiness & Referrals”