Customer Experience) can be defined as the perception that customers have as a result of their interactions with the brand: products, channels, systems, employees, etc. The result is the result of the degree of objective (tangible) performance in which the products or services are delivered, plus the sum of the (intangible) perceptions that this performance has originated. In this case, the delivery of the product does not logically refer to the mere transfer, but to the set of circumstances involved before, during and after the transaction.

One of the fundamental strategic principles today is to put the customer at the centre but, as Branward’s 2017 report showed, the reality is far from it. It must be clear that Experience management is not simply a part of management, it is in itself a way of understanding the management of the brand and the business itself. It is therefore an approach that harmonizes every aspect of the Organization, from strategic direction to people management, including each of the departments and with a single and unequivocal focus: how we make the brand live. Consequently, being a customer-oriented company, which offers authentic experiences with the brand, implies having a corporate culture that can internalize that intention to turn it into an authentic reality, it is not something that affects only one department, it affects the entire Organization completely.

On the other hand, organizational culture is a system of shared beliefs that makes it easier for employees to understand how the brand brings value to customers, what are the elements that differentiate it from the competition, and how the brand’s personality affects the construction of relationships. Therefore, one of the ways to put the customer at the center is by integrating customer experience management into the company’s culture, as part of its most intrinsic values. The relationship between brands and customers has evolved and nowadays the important thing is no longer what we do for a customer, but how we make them feel. Putting the customer at the center is not only about trying to offer them a good service, but it also means elevating them to the field of emotions and making them live a great experience.

Challenges in adopting a Customer-Centric Culture:

1. Resistance to change

Human beings tend to get used to comfort zones. They represent familiar territories where we feel comfortable and in the face of change, we often present some resistance. We know that the world is constantly changing and brand management must change with it. For a long time it has been enough to have a good product, today it is necessary to incorporate a good meaning, something in which customers can see themselves represented and this fully affects the way business is done, the business culture itself.

2. Change-makers are needed

I first heard the term from someone returning from an eye-opening experience at Singularity University during an interesting meeting with brand managers. A great statement. Without these true agents of change, in this case from within the companies leading the transformation, it is very difficult for it to really take place.

3. Purpose: It’s all about what you’re there for

We leave aside a customer-oriented > culture to incorporate a culture that starts from the very essence of a business transformed into the opposite: customer > product. First, you have to understand what customers want, what they want brands to provide them, and then develop it.

4. Feedback:

According to the study mentioned above, only 46% of companies receive feedback from customers. And only 53% say they have measurement tools to improve the customer experience. If information is power, it is clear that it is very necessary to increase the measurement of results in order to achieve continuous improvement processes.

 

The customer experience is totally linked to the brand and with it to the business itself. Along these lines, businesses concerned with building strong brands also develop a strong corporate culture, achieving greater differentiation and better results. All those who have understood how to generate authentic brand experiences have fully integrated that reality into their business culture, they have perfectly understood that the central axis of any strategy starts with the customers and today they are the true agents of change. A challenge ahead that cannot be ignored.

 

Carlos Puig Falcó

President of Branward®

Photos: Shutterstock


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