Designing the right customer experience

Bain & Company recently surveyed 362 firms and found that 80 percent believed they provided exceptional customer service while only 8 percent of their customers agreed with the firm’s perceptions. Their findings are summarized in “Tuning In to the Voice of Your Customer” in the October issue of Harvard Management Update. Bain found “the ultimate test of any company’s delivery lies in what customers tell others. The best companies find ways to tune in to customers’ voices every day.” I found the article very in-tune with blogging and customer engagement, promoting not only high profit customers but also high profits from the reach of company advocates.

Customer advocacy can be summarized as a net promoter score, calculated as the percentage of customers who would recommend a company (the promoters) minus the percentage that would urge friends to stay away (the detractors).

Some of the advice mentioned is to empower front line employees to talk to their customers and know their needs so they may develop new products and methods to increase profits from each customer as well as that customer’s satisfaction and connection with their purchase.