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THE ART AND SCIENCE OF CUSTOMER EXPERIENCE

by Paul Conder. Erin McMonigal, Editor


A COLLECTION OF SHORT ARTICLES FROM LENATIS CX PRACTICE
(C) 2014 Lenati LLC
Cover Image PRAIRIE CITY TILT-O-WHIRL Paul Conder 2010
There was a time - not that long
ago - when customer experience
was simply the thing that
happened at the end of an
industrial production system.
Factories made products that were
purchased by customers through
uncomplicated, linear networks of
distribution. Services were
delivered on a strictly person-to-
person level. And the difference
between products and services
was completely clear.
PREFACE
Every layer of that system has
shifted in less than one
generation. Distribution has
repositioned its center around
the customer rather than the
factory. Channels have
fragmented and recombined
into intersecting digital,
physical and hybrid networks.
The lines between product and
service have been blurred.
Real time visualization of major internet nodes by PeerOne Hosting iPhone app. peer1.com
When changes happen this fast, its
easy to get a little apprehensive. At
a recent retail convention, the most
common theme for keynote speeches
was Is Retail Dead? How much
has been written about the death of
the music or lm industries as their
products become digital? Or about
the death of privacy as more
transactions go online or disappear
from view completely?
Controlled demolition of the abandoned Woodwards department store, prior to redevelopment.
Vancouver Canada 2006. Photo by Tannoy.
We tend to be more optimistic.
When photography was invented,
many in the art world forecasted
the death of painting. - and
within a few generations we saw
Van Gogh, Picasso, Matisse,
Monet, Pollock and Rothko.
Those who can evolve will thrive.
http://www.ickr.com/photos/maveric2003/2153529955/
http://www.artnews.com/2013/05/13/photography-in-art-museums/ by rebecca robertson
photo (C)2014 Rebecca Robertson.
CONTENTS
1. Whats An Experience Worth?
CX, Commerce and Culture.
2. Ten Key CX Principles
Building a Customer-Centric Business.
3. The Art & Science Of
Engineering Experiences
Design Tinking and CX.

4. The New CX Toolbox
Six Methods for Building a Better
Customer Experience.
5. Lets Get Phygital
Ten Ways to Connect with Customers
in an OmniChannel Universe.
At Lenati, we help clients create stronger
connections with their customers.
This is a collection of articles about what
weve learned through our practice,
developing customer experiences.
We dene customer experience as the aggregate of a person's
perceptions, feelings, memories and associations around their
engagement with a brand. All competitive businesses are somehow
dependent on their customers experience to drive their growth and
prosperity. I cant think of any exceptions, past or present. Even
businesses that are focused on a basic need - for example healthcare
or grocery retailing - use experiential drivers in some way to set
themselves apart. Some monopolies are known for neglecting
customer experience - but once they are forced into competitive
environments they tend to smarten up quickly. Telecommunications
companies have made this shift, some better than others.
At the top level, treating your customer well just seems like the right
thing to do - for altruistic reasons if for nothing else. Te
interactions that happen every time a business makes a connection
with a customer add up to aect much more than the individual
transaction. It has been shown that loyalty, brand perception,
spending, likelihood to recommend and overall satisfaction are all
aected by CX - but I believe that there is a much bigger story. At
the top level, customer experience is really about making personal
connections with people - treating them with respect, with
consistency, with dignity, with foresight and with style. But to make
the business case, there need to be a clear way to measure the
nancial impact of improving customer experience. So the question
shifts from why do we make experiences better for people? - to
how much is an experience actually worth?
For a question this big its important to get a lot of opinions - so we
have scrubbed recent research and combined it with our own
ndings to give a top-level view of real-world business impacts from
dierent industries...
by Paul Conder, Lenati LLC. 2014
A CEI survey found that 86% of customers are willing to pay more for an
improved experience, but only 1% feel they are having their expectations
met by vendors.
(Source: Forbes CX: the Chicken or the Egg)
The Harvard Business Review found that focusing business activities on
a holistic customers journey (as opposed to developing individual
touchpoints separately) is 30-40% more strongly correlated with
customer satisfaction - and 20-30% more strongly correlated with
business outcomes such as revenue, repeat purchase, reduced customer
churn and positive word of mouth.
(Alex Rawson, Ewan Duncan, and Conor Jones, HBR, Sept. 2013)
Lenati CX engagements have resulted in over $1 Billion dollars in new
business for their clients, and have connected with over 100 Million
customers worldwide.
(2014)
CapGemini discovered that over 50% of customers of nancial
institutions are at risk of switching banks based on customer experience.
(CapGemini 2013 World Retail Banking Report)
Oracle found that businesses can lose 20% of revenue from poor
customer experiences yet many are stuck in an execution chasm, unable
to implement new CX strategies.
(Oracle CX Survey, 2014)
86% of leaders interviewed by Forrester Research place customer
experience as their top strategic priority. In another study, Forrester
found that better CX can deliver more that $1Billion in revenue growth to
large businesses.
(Differentiating on Customer Experience Forrester, 2012. and Make the Business Case 2014)
Peppers and Rogers found that CX has emerged as the single most
important aspect in achieving success for companies across all
industries - both B2B and B2C.
(Return on Customer Don Peppers, Martha Rogers 2006)
Deloitte found in its research on cross-channel selling that the use of
mobile devices in retail inuences 36% of sales, or approximately 1.1
trillion dollars of revenue.
(Deloite the New Digital Divide, 2014)
Tesco chairman Sir Richard Broadbent was quoted as saying "customer
experience is more important than our products"
(Sunday Times, Nov. 2013)
87% of companies in the process of implementing a CX strategy who
were surveyed by the Temkin Group in late 2013 saw positive business
results in the rst year. They also found in a separate study that nearly
60% of large companies have ambitions to be industry leaders in CX
within three years.
(Temkin Group Research 2013)
Customer Experience is a personal thing, and is not
something that can be created by a company. It is the
aggregate of a person's perceptions, feelings, memories and
associations around their engagement with a brand. Each
customer brings their lifes memories and associations to each
interaction, and so it is inappropriate to say that we create
specic experiences for each customer. We can only aord the
customer the chance to engage. CX is similar to branding in
this way. Companies put a lot of eort into creating their
brand - but people's perceptions of a company are personal,
and belong to people not the company.
Engagement and understanding between people and
businesses is becoming deeper - but in ways that are more
complex and less predictable. When channel models were
more monolithic and uni-directional, companies were able to
separate their customer face from their operations with an
opaque curtain between the two. Te explosion in digital
communication channels means that people can see the
totality of the company including behind the curtain. Every
facet of the company needs to be understood from the
customer's point of view - its all on display. Tis goes far
beyond service interactions with sta or engagement with a
product. Customers have expectations that need to be met
around a companys ethics, values and where and how it
conducts its business.
Building a Customer Centric Business
by Paul Conder, Lenati LLC. 2014
1.
2.
A Customer Journey is the framework of customers
interactions and experiences while engaging with a brand.
Its not just a physical journey. It also includes all the
interactions with digital media, social interactions, word of
mouth, service interactions the works. Mapping the
Customer Journey across available channels (omnichannel
analysis, in retail terms) is the key to understanding how the
experiences can be enabled, communicated and focused.
Touchpoints are only physical or digital enablers in the
Customers Journey. Touchpoints aord the customer the
opportunity to carry out a certain pattern of interactions. (In
the eld of design, they are called aordances) Every
touchpoint designed into a website, app, retail interior,
hospital, oce, store xture, airport, smartphone or table
setting is put there to enable certain interactions, carry certain
messages, and pattern certain behaviors. Many companies
focus on their touchpoints when they speak about customer
experience because the touchpoints are the items that the
company produces in the end - and there is a lot of thought,
eort and money put into building things like websites, sales
networks and retail spaces. When the focus is placed too
strongly on the touchpoint, the bias is towards the operational
aspects of the company not what the customer is actually
thinking, feeling, saying, doing or spending.
3.
4.
Any point in the customers journey has the potential to
drive the customer away from a company. We have seen
companies insist that long service wait times allow customers
the opportunity to explore and engage. - When in reality
about half of them were leaving within a few moments of
entry. Te operational obstacles were enough to blind the
companys leadership to the real impact this experience was
having on their business. Tis is an extreme example - but
we have seen many companies suer from similar blockages
in connecting with their customers.
Te customers experience can be directly linked to the
customers spending. We wrote about this in the previous
article we published called Whats an Experience Worth?
Companies are seeing an enormous upside in revenue and
loyalty by framing their products, services and systems
around the customers experience.
5.
6.
Tere is no such thing as an oine customer. Whatever
industry you are in, you can be sure that your customer can
be present in several channels, sometimes at once -
comparing you to your competition, and learning about what
others say about you. For the companies that see every
aspect of their business as customer-facing, this is their best
opportunity to make a connection.
Te value in aligning the customers experience to sales
performance can be massive. In our projects, we have seen
sales increases, improved brand perception, more positive
reviews, increased loyalty and retention AND simplied
operations by taking a customer-centric view, generating
billions of dollars in new business.
7.
8.
Customer Experience is not about projecting a made-up
theme for your companys brand. Many companies jump to
the idea that the customer should be delighted or surprised
at each step - but attempting to make this happen in the real
world is often cumbersome and contrived, creating a brand
perception that is fake, insincere and inauthentic. For the
customer it can feel like the company is trying too hard.
Like that kid in school who wanted so desperately to be
friends and seemed to stick to you like glue. Teatre was
often used metaphorically as an approach to staging
customer experiences. Much of the most famous writing
about CX, for example Te Experience Economy by Pine
and Gilmore, caught on so well that the language in it
permeated business and creative culture in North America -
but sometimes the original context was missing. For many,
the rst taste of CX strategy demonstrated the artice and
superciality of a Broadway theatre production - and often in
complete misalignment to the brand or the product. Te
same authors later wrote a follow-up book called
Authenticity which was aimed at reigning in this trend.
9.
Tere are three key areas for measuring CX:
1. Customer input helps us understand what the
customer is thinking and feeling - capturing perceptions,
opinions, preferences, feelings, associations and reactions.
Tis can also include input on subjects like their likelihood
to recommend the company, brand cohesion, or their
general satisfaction. Tis rst area is extremely useful, but
can be prone to errors that are typical for surveys - for
example coverage, (size and quality of the sample)
response, (problems related to the way questions are asked)
and non-response (customers providing erroneous
responses - sometimes because they are being asked about
a subject that isnt of any consequence to them.)
2. Observational research helps us understand what the
customer is doing. It includes everything from eld
observations, online analytics, trac and browsing
patterns, social listening data, dwell times - anything that
can be observed with a minimum of aect to the
customers behavior. While this might seem more
objective, it leaves out the more personal aspects to the
experience - favoring behavioral data.
3. Financial data helps us understand how the customer
is spending. It can be correlated to the rst two areas,
creating performance or value-based models.
For a deep dive on CX research methods, see Te New
CX Toolbox - available at Lenati.com/cx
10.
SUMMARY:
Customer experience is not about
layering themed touchpoints into the
customers journey. Nor is it really
about surprising and delighting your
customer at every step.
For the most part, CX is about making a
personal, meaningful and relevant
connection with a customer.
Other times its about simply getting out
of their way, and letting your
relationship evolve naturally.
Photo: Muns
THE ART AND
SCIENCE OF
ENGINEERING
EXPERIENCES
Tere has been a great deal written about design thinking in the past
few years. Much focus has been placed on its value in helping dene
business strategy, with design rms around the world claiming that they
have evolved beyond their role as developers of products into a new role
as business visionaries. It seems nearly every rm with a design practice
has a proprietary and unique problem-solving process that will unlock
the magic combination of Customer Experience, Brand Vision and
Strategy - transforming any company into the next Apple.
Tis is only half true.
Design is a process that helps people develop systems that other people
will use. Tis process can be applied to software, buildings, space-
shuttles, tea kettles and organizational structures. CX design is about
applying designs problem solving capacity to align a business to face its
customers. It needs to work across channels, touchpoints and media -
making it dierent from other elds. Software designers make software.
Automotive designers make cars. CX designers enable experiences.
But no one owns this process. Its origins are ancient. Its eects are
ubiquitous in the modern world and permeate every facet of our lives.
Tis is the story of how this process came to be, how it works, and how
it can be leveraged to build a better connection between a business and
its customers.
DESIGN THINKING AND CX
by Paul Conder, Lenati LLC. 2014
Explore - research
Creation - concept design
Reection - prototype
Implementation
- Jakob Schneider, Marc Stickdorn
from This is Service Design Thinking
Te design process, a term thats used almost interchangeably with design
thinking, turns up in some form in several disciplines. Ign al-Haytham
was an eleventh century Persian Scientist who debunked theories on optics
developed by such scientic heavy-weights as Ptolemy, Euclid and
Aristotle. But just as importantly, he articulated the process behind his
work. - Empirical evidence drove his ideas, which were tested using an
iterative process of experimentation, continuing until he knew his ideas
worked in the real world. Tis was one of the rst well-documented
examples of the scientic method - and while he wasnt the only one to
work this way, his successes in the eld combined with his well-known
intellectual rigor helped spread the word. Some version of this process can
be seen in elds as diverse as mechanical engineering, physics, visual art -
and customer experience design. Te basic principles are:
1. Learning as much as you can about a problem or opportunity
- We will call this area of focus Discovery
2. Asking questions, developing hypotheses, creating concepts to test
- We will call this area of focus Ideation
3. Testing those ideas to learn from them - feeding learnings back to step 1
- We will call this area of focus Testing
A version of this is taught in virtually every design, art, engineering and
science school in the rst year. Te process itself is renamed from eld to
eld, but the components remain basically the same. - In science its called
the scientic method - in engineering its usually referred to a problem
solving process and in design its usually called design thinking or the
design process. No one owns this process - but the perspective that each
person or team brings to it is what makes it unique.
"The seeker after truth is not one who studies the
writings of the ancients and, following his natural
disposition, puts his trust in them, but rather the one
who suspects his faith in them and questions what he
gathers from them, the one who submits to argument
and demonstration, and not the sayings of a human
being whose nature is fraught with all kinds of
imperfection and deciency.
- Ign al-Haytham
"The electric light has caused me the greatest amount
of study and has required the most elaborate
experiments... I would construct and work along
various lines until I found them untenable. When one
theory was discarded, I developed another at once. I
realized very early that this was the only possible way
for me to work out all the problems.
- Thomas Edison,
paraphrased by by George S. Bryan 1926
ORIGINS
Design projects must ultimately pass through three
spaces... We label these inspiration, for the
circumstances (be they a problem, an opportunity, or
both) that motivate the search for solutions;
ideation, for the process of generating, developing,
and testing ideas that may lead to solutions; and
implementation, for the charting of a path to
market.
- Tim Brown, IDEO, Harvard Business Review.
Children are born true scientists. They spontaneously
experiment and experience and reexperience again.
They select, combine, and test, seeking to nd order
in their experiences which is the mostest? which is
the leastest? They smell, taste, bite, and touch-test
for hardness, softness, springiness, roughness,
smoothness, coldness, warmness: they heft, shake,
punch, squeeze, push, crush, rub, and try to pull
things apart.
- Buckminster Fuller
Despite its ancient history and diverse origins, today the design process
is usually associated with the eld of industrial design, consumer product
development and with the broader eld of invention. Te focus here is
on developing manufactured products. But there was always an
understanding that those products have to work for people. At each
phase of the process questions around how people value, purchase, use,
store, maintain and eventually dispose of a product would sit side to side
with how the product actually worked to satisfy those needs. Te
question would the user like it? would have the same weight as does it
work? For this reason, designers became schooled in how to understand
users needs, market trends and cultural frameworks.
As design went beyond the focus on the product to focus on the person,
each phase in the process was aected. Discovery centered around
research into users needs, perceptions and wants. Ideation employed
techniques like role-play, use-cycle-analysis and participatory-design
(bringing users into the creative sessions.) And testing involved taking
mock-ups of the product concepts to the users to see how they would
interact with it and to capture their thoughts on its value. Each area of
focus started to employ techniques from the social sciences to help
connect peoples preferences and perceptions to the product.
Identify the Problem then the Criteria and Constraints
Brainstorm Possible Solutions and Generate Ideas
Explore Possibilities and Select an Approach
Build and test a Prototype and Rene the Design
- NASA engineering process
FROM PRODUCTS
TO EXPERIENCES
photo: Nic Redhead,
photo: Raneko
photo NASA
Te design process was later adopted by people who were designing
software. As they worked to make new technologies usable and valuable
to a larger audience, they grabbed hold of the tools that had long been
employed by industrial designers and applied them to non-physical
products.
One of the most important tools that was adopted by this new group was
the journey framework. Tis set up a visual representation of each step
of the users experience. Te product wasnt the primary focus here - it
was about mapping the interactions, experiences and perceptions of a user
in the real world, and predicting how a product should intervene in those
interactions - patterning the behavior of the user and delivering some
kind of value to them. Larger maps could be constructed that showed the
systems that supported the product, the lifecycle of the relationship
between the user and the product, multiple users interacting through the
products features, cyclical patterns and repeated interactions etc. Tis
tool (often resembling a kind of storyboard or process diagram) helped
systematize the design process. Ideas could be worked out as part of a
larger system of interactions. Its hard to imagine the development of
todays software or interactive products without this tool, and without the
larger process to enable it. Tis technique is the origin of customer
journey mapping which is a key process for anyone in the eld of
customer experience.
Principles for the Development of a Complete
Mind: Study the science of art. Study the art
of science. Develop your senses- especially
learn how to see. Realize that everything
connects to everything else.
- Leonardo da Vinci
Any system that sees aesthetics as irrelevant, that
separates the artist from his product, that fragments
the work of the individual, or creates by committee, or
makes mincemeat of the creative process will, in the
long run, diminish not only the product but the maker
as well.
- Paul Rand
photo: Richard Huppertz
RICHARD JAMES
BACK COUNTRY SKIING
BACK COUNTRY SKIING
LOCAL ECOLOGY
WILDLIFE CORRIDOR
WILDLIFE CORRIDOR
DOWNHILL CYCLING
SHOPPING
SPORTS CLUBS
BIRDING
SWIMING LOCATIONS
RUNNING GROUPS
DOWNHILL SKIING
CROSSCOUNTRY SKIING
SENIORS ACTIVITIES
DEVELOPER CREDIBILITY
LOCAL GEOGRAPHY
BARS & NIGHTLIFE
TRANSPORT
NEARBY AMENITIES
SPA
ROAD BIKE
SCHOOLS
CAMPING
LOCAL MATERIALS
HIKING
GOLF
HUNTING
FISHING
FISHING
LOCAL VEGETARIAN ORGANIC
LOCAL VEGETARIAN ORGANIC LOCAL ECOLOGY CREATE ATTRACTION
ENTRY FROM MAIN ST.
VISIBLE BUT UNWELCOMING
CLOSED IN AND DARK
BASECAMP TO ROCKIES: ENTRY
STRONG EXTERIOR SIGNAGE PROGRAM
REINVENT DARK EXTERIOR -
OPEN UP TO OUTSIDE
ACTIVE CAFE / BAR ENVIRONMENT
STRONG DIRECTIONAL LIGHT FEATURE
FOSTER DIALOGUE
NOT SALES AGESTS IN CAFE
GUIDE ACTS CONNECTS VISITOR
TO WHAT THE AREA HAS TO OFFER
STARTS CONVERSATIONS TO
GENERATE PROFILE
ALTERNATE TOUCHSCREEN INTERFACE
FOR DIRECT INPUT FROM VISITOR
WILDLIFE EXHIBIT OVER STEEL FIREPLACE
LONG BAR, CAGED ROCK, RECYCLED WOOD
INTIMATE, WARM, DISARMING
EAST WEST PARTNERS
THREE SISTERS MOUNTAIN VILLAGE
DISCOVERY CENTER
CANMORE ALBERTA
IPHONE INTERFACE CONTROL
WIRELESS CONNECTIONS TO
MULTIMEDIA SYSTEM
08.174
1. ENTRY - CREATE ATTRACTION 2. CAFE - FOSTER DIALOGUE 3. PERSONALIZE - GENERATE GUEST PROFILE 4. EXHIBIT - ORIENTATION AND BIG PICTURE STORIES 5. MODEL SPACE - PERSONALIZED PRESENTATION 6. INTERACTIVE - PERSONALIZED PRESENTATION
DOWNHILL CYCLING
LOCAL ART
LOCAL MUSIC
RAIL LINE HISTORY
PLANT LIFE
FESTIVALS
LOCAL TRAILS ORIENTATION LOCAL HERBS, VEGIES SUSTAINABLE INITIATIVES
INDUSTRIAL HISTORY
LOCAL PRIORITIES
SOCIAL SUSTAINABILITY
HORTICULTURE
FARMING
MICRO FARMING
WILDLIFE CORRIDOR
GUIDE RESOURCES NAVIGATION ORGANIC FARMS
DIFFICULTY LEVELS TRAILS LOCAL SPECIALTIES
IMAGES SPECIES ABORIGINAL DISHES
LOCAL EQUIP. SOURCES HISTORY LOCAL RESTAURANTS
GUIDED TRIPS GUIDE RESOURCES RECIPES
LESSONS & CLINICS CHEF PROFILES
TOUR RESERVATIONS
TRIP RESERVATIONS
RESTAURANT GUIDE
RESTAURANT RESERVATIONS
GENERATE GUEST PROFILE
FOR NAVIGATION OF EXHIBIT, TOUR, OUTPUT
INTRODUCE STORY
BIG PICTURE - GEOGRAPHY,
CULTURE, HISTORY
PERSONALIZED PRESENTATION
INTEGRATED MODEL & MULTIMEDIA
IPHONE SYNCHRONIZES
WITH BASE STATION UPON
VISITOR AND GUIDES RETURN TO
DISCOVERY CENTRE.
COFFEE, SNACKS, WINE
OFFER OF SETTING UP RESERVATIONS
FOR FURTHER ACTIVITIES - RESTAURANTS
BARS, SPORTS CLINICS ETC.
PHONE DOWNLOADS DATA FOR PRINTED
OUTPUT - COMPUTER AUTOMATICALLY
CREATES DOCUMENT OF JOURNEY
PHOTOS OF SITE
TOUR STORED IN
IPHONE FOR
DOWNLOAD UPON
RETURN TO
CENTRE
CUSTOM DOCUMENT:
INFORMATION FROM PROFILE
PDF VERSIONS OF DIGITAL
PRESENTATION,
KEY IMAGES FROM EXHIBITS,
RESERVATIONS FOR RESTAURANT,
TOURS ETC.
MAP OF SITE TOUR,
PHOTOS TAKEN ON TOUR,
LOCALRELEVANT BUSINESS GUIDE
RELEVANT REAL ESTATE OFFERINGS
SUITED TO VISITOR.
9. PRODUCT SPECIFIC INFORMATION 7. EXIT TO GUIDED TOUR - COMMUNITY STORIES 8. PERSONALIZED GUIDED TOUR
SITE INFO
TOUR MAP
PERSONAL PROFILE
KEY AREAS OF INTEREST
GPS CO ORDINATES - SITES
VISIT RECORDER
8. RETURN TO CENTRE -
C
L
O
S
E
CAFE EXHIBIT
FOUR MICRO-STORIES AROUND LOCAL DIFFERENTIATORS:
FISHING, ART GALLERY, RESTAURANT, HORTICULTURE
TOUR SITES GUIDED BY GPS
ENABLED IPHONE APP.
CUSTOMIZED STORY LINE
FROM GUEST PROFILE,
TOUR GUIDE
PERSONAL PHOTOS
OF SITE VISIT
This is an example of a Journey Framework, where
a customers experience is visualized using a
combination of storyboarding and process
mapping. - In this case, the project involved a
series of orientation, customer service and sales
interactions at a mountain resort. Rather than
focus on the touchpoints themselves, the
framework focuses on how the customers
experience is fostered by the physical, digital
and mobile environment - all from the
customers point of view. This was used later to
develop the physical and digital infrastructure of
the resort, and to ensure each touchpoint
supported a positive customer experience.
Within a few years, the process that used to be known for designing tea-
kettles was used for designing interactive systems and experiences - even
businesses. Its business applications connected marketing and customer
insights with operations and distribution - helping entire companies to
become more customer-centric. Te process is making things work for
people - but now, the things were fast dissolving into services,
environments, software and media - the people were becoming more and
more diverse and inter-connected - and the channels through which
people connected were fragmenting and overlapping. Who could
possibly be an expert in all of these elds at once?
Te simplest answer is no one.
Bill Buxton has developed the idea of a Renaissance Team. - In
essence, he said that the design challenges of today are too complex and
involve too many disciplines to be solvable by a single expert. Te
Renaissance Team takes over from the notion of the Renaissance Man.
Te collective knowledge of a diverse group trumps the lone genius.
Te process, the teams who applied it, and the types of problems it was
aimed at solving, all evolved simultaneously. It became a unifying force
for innovation behind extremely diverse teams and businesses. Where it
used to focus on physical products, it became a powerful methodology
for developing complex, people-centric systems of any kind. It shifted
the conversation away from the supply chain and towards the customer.
Its not a renaissance man or woman that we need to
be cultivating, but the renaissance team. In todays
world of specialization, the problems are such as to
require a great deal of depth in each of a range of
disciplines. We have already mentioned a few:
business, design, engineering, marketing,
manufacturing and science. No individual can
possess all these skills at the level that is required to
execute in a competitive way..
- Bill Buxton, from Sketching User Experiences.
Hell, there are no rules here - we're trying to
accomplish something.
- Thomas Edison.
Love your experiments (as you would an ugly child).
Exploit the liberty in casting your work as beautiful
experiments, iterations, attempts, trials, and errors.
Take the long view and allow yourself the fun of
failure every day.
- Bruce Mau,
From The Incomplete Manifesto for Growth
photo: Eddao,
photo Cory Doctorow
photo by SparkCBC
Te design process is usually modeled as a linear sequence. But from
our experience, thats not how it works in the real world. In this model,
the structure of process - made up of the basic building blocks of
discovery, ideation and testing - becomes less and less rigid. Its not
about following three steps in sequence as much as shifting focus from
place to place, depending on the needs of the team and the types of
questions they are asking. (Others have pointed this out too, for
example, Tim Brown from IDEO.)
Making the process work has a lot more to do with the diverse
capacities and perspectives of the team than about a formalized step-
by-step process. Even the team itself isnt static. Dierent people - the
client, analysts, researchers, stakeholders, and sometimes the customers
themselves - come into the process to oer their perspective when its
relevant to the problem.
You usually enter here.
If you do, its good to have a
clear problem or opportunity
identied rst. However,
these will likely shift as you
go through the process.
You should
probably exit here.
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.
T
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S
T
I
N
G
T
e
st yo
u
r id
e
a
s o
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p
a
p
e
r, in

th
e
la
b
a
n
d
in
th
e
re
a
l w
o
rld
.
L
e
a
rn
a
s m
u
c
h
a
s yo
u
c
a
n

fro
m
th
e
te
st. F
e
e
d
it b
a
c
k

in
to
th
e
syste
m
.
Sometimes you enter here - for
example when a great idea comes your
way and needs some research and
testing to prove it out - most literature
on the design process tries to play this
down because it is dicult to predict
when you will have a great idea.
DISCOVERY.
Research the opportunity, problem, context,
culture, stakeholder and customer patterns.
Use whatever research tools make sense for
your context.
In much of the literature on customer experience design, there is
an emphasis on problem solving. But there is a lot more to
customer experience than solving for existing problems. In order
to foster a great experience, a good rst step would be to identify
and eliminate known painpoints - but that in itself will not be
enough to compete against other companies who focus on
moving towards opportunities in the market, cultural or
technological shifts, or to better satisfy a customer need. Worse
still, it can be very dicult for companies and teams to align on
(or sometimes even notice) real problems without substantial
evidence being compiled rst - leading to a chicken-and-egg
question - you cant start the research without identifying a
problem, and you cant settle on a problem area without research.
Our team uses a wide set of research tools, from ethnography
and voice of the customer to online analytics and e-commerce
performance statistics to build a deep understanding of the
customer in the real world - identifying better opportunities to
engage, but also building knowledge of the terrain. Our next
article, titled Te New CX Toolbox will feature a deep dive into
our customer experience research methodology.
D
I
S
C
O
V
E
R
Y
R
e
se
a
rc
h
th
e
p
ro
b
le
m
,
o
p
p
o
rtu
n
ity, c
o
n
te
xt, c
u
ltu
re
,
sta
k
e
h
o
ld
e
r a
n
d
c
u
sto
m
e
r
p
a
tte
rn
s. U
se
w
h
a
te
ve
r
re
se
a
rc
h
to
o
ls m
a
k
e
se
n
se

fo
r yo
u
r c
o
n
te
xt.
I
D
E
A
T
I
O
N
D
e
ve
lo
p
c
o
n
c
e
p
tu
a
l so
lu
tio
n
s
to
th
e
p
ro
b
le
m
, a
p
p
ro
a
c
h
e
s
to
re
a
lize
th
e
o
p
p
o
rtu
n
ity,
b
e
tte
r w
a
ys to
d
o
so
m
e
th
in
g
,
m
e
th
o
d
s to
fo
ste
r a
b
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tte
r
e
xp
e
rie
n
c
e
.
T
E
S
T
I
N
G
T
e
st yo
u
r id
e
a
s o
n
p
a
p
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r, in

th
e
la
b
a
n
d
in
th
e
re
a
l w
o
rld
.
L
e
a
rn
a
s m
u
c
h
a
s yo
u
c
a
n

fro
m
th
e
te
st. F
e
e
d
it b
a
c
k

in
to
th
e
syste
m
.
RICHARD JAMES
BACK COUNTRY SKIING
LOCAL ECOLOGY
WILDLIFE CORRIDOR
DOWNHILL CYCLING
SHOPPING
SPORTS CLUBS
LOCAL HISTORY
BIRDING
SWIMING LOCATIONS
RUNNING GROUPS
DOWNHILL SKIING
CROSSCOUNTRY SKIING
SENIORS ACTIVITIES
DEVELOPER CREDIBILITY
LOCAL GEOGRAPHY
BARS & NIGHTLIFE
TRANSPORT
NEARBY AMENITIES
SPA
SCHOOLS
CAMPING
LOCAL MATERIALS
HIKING
GOLF
HUNTING
FISHING
FISHING
LOCAL VEGETARIAN ORGANIC
IPHONE INTERFACE CONTROL
WIRELESS CONNECTIONS TO
MULTIMEDIA SYSTEM
DOWNHILL CYCLING
LOCAL ART
LOCAL MUSIC
RAIL LINE HISTORY
PLANT LIFE
FESTIVALS
GENERATE GUEST PROFILE
NAVIGATION OF EXHIBIT, TOUR, OUTPUT
INTRODUCE STORY
BIG PICTURE - GEOGRAPHY,
CULTURE, HISTORY
PERSONALIZED PRESENTATION
INTEGRATED MODEL & MULTIMEDIA
IDEATION.
Develop conceptual approaches to realize the
opportunity, to solve the problem, build better
ways to do something, and foster a better
experience for the customer.
Ideation has always been a sort of black box - the moment
when the magic happens, out of sight of the client - when a new
concept comes out of all that knowledge. Tere has been a lot
written about creative tools that can help spur this along - rapid
visualization, generative approaches, free-association, lateral and
visual thinking, oblique strategies, brainstorming - techniques to
get a group to work up new, more diverse ideas faster. Tese
techniques help to frame up new questions about the customer
and their context - or to gain a dierent perspective on an
opportunity. I would like to say that these tools will be eective
in the hands of anyone who has access to them - but
unfortunately, thats not the case. Te success of all this comes
down to the creative capacity of the team and its individual
members in the end. I dont believe that creativity is something
that some people have and others dont - I feel strongly that its
something that is learned. And it comes in a lot of forms - many
confuse drawing ability with creativity - a mis-conception that
has kept many important points of view out of the conversation.
Success here comes from being inspired by the group around
you, the richness of the knowledge at hand and what you have
taken from the people you have worked with in the past. Te
best approach is to build a team that makes up for each others
blind spots - the more diverse the better - and let the group learn
their way to a solution together.
D
I
S
C
O
V
E
R
Y
R
e
se
a
rc
h
th
e
p
ro
b
le
m
,
o
p
p
o
rtu
n
ity, c
o
n
te
xt, c
u
ltu
re
,
sta
k
e
h
o
ld
e
r a
n
d
c
u
sto
m
e
r
p
a
tte
rn
s. U
se
w
h
a
te
ve
r
re
se
a
rc
h
to
o
ls m
a
k
e
se
n
se

fo
r yo
u
r c
o
n
te
xt.
I
D
E
A
T
I
O
N
D
e
ve
lo
p
c
o
n
c
e
p
tu
a
l so
lu
tio
n
s
to
th
e
p
ro
b
le
m
, a
p
p
ro
a
c
h
e
s
to
re
a
lize
th
e
o
p
p
o
rtu
n
ity,
b
e
tte
r w
a
ys to
d
o
so
m
e
th
in
g
,
m
e
th
o
d
s to
fo
ste
r a
b
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tte
r
e
xp
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rie
n
c
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.
T
E
S
T
I
N
G
T
e
st yo
u
r id
e
a
s o
n
p
a
p
e
r, in

th
e
la
b
a
n
d
in
th
e
re
a
l w
o
rld
.
L
e
a
rn
a
s m
u
c
h
a
s yo
u
c
a
n

fro
m
th
e
te
st. F
e
e
d
it b
a
c
k

in
to
th
e
syste
m
.
Testing breakout.
TESTING.
Test your ideas on paper, in the lab and in the
real world. Learn as much as you can from the
test. Feed it back into the system.
Te importance testing as a part of the process cannot be
overstated. In a perfect world, this is where the team should be
spending the majority of their time. It is the only opportunity to
make a mistake, learn from it, and improve on tactics without
exposing them to the entire customer base. Still, its amazing
how many companies fail in this critical step. So much emphasis
is placed on research and creative - often this part gets
downplayed - or worse yet, overlooked completely.
Te key to getting this activity right is to prototype initial
concepts quickly - using simple, inexpensive means - and to let
them fail. Ten, feed the learnings back into ideation and
discovery quickly to get new concepts. Tis is why the process
isnt linear - it needs to not only feedback on itself, it needs to do
so unpredictably. In a recent project, we developed a simple set
of prototypes that could be tested and modied very easily. Te
models were reworked on the y based on customer input and
observation, and quickly evolved into designs that delighted
customers at a fraction of the cost of the original concept. - But
they were nothing like what we imagined in the rst place.
Testing, ideation and research were layered on top of each other,
not in sequence, to get a better result that we couldnt have
anticipated.
For a deep dive into testing and prototyping methods, see our
next article Te New CX Toolbox.
D
I
S
C
O
V
E
R
Y
R
e
se
a
rc
h
th
e
p
ro
b
le
m
,
o
p
p
o
rtu
n
ity, c
o
n
te
xt, c
u
ltu
re
,
sta
k
e
h
o
ld
e
r a
n
d
c
u
sto
m
e
r
p
a
tte
rn
s. U
se
w
h
a
te
ve
r
re
se
a
rc
h
to
o
ls m
a
k
e
se
n
se

fo
r yo
u
r c
o
n
te
xt.
I
D
E
A
T
I
O
N
D
e
ve
lo
p
c
o
n
c
e
p
tu
a
l so
lu
tio
n
s
to
th
e
p
ro
b
le
m
, a
p
p
ro
a
c
h
e
s
to
re
a
lize
th
e
o
p
p
o
rtu
n
ity,
b
e
tte
r w
a
ys to
d
o
so
m
e
th
in
g
,
m
e
th
o
d
s to
fo
ste
r a
b
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tte
r
e
xp
e
rie
n
c
e
.
T
E
S
T
I
N
G
T
e
st yo
u
r id
e
a
s o
n
p
a
p
e
r, in

th
e
la
b
a
n
d
in
th
e
re
a
l w
o
rld
.
L
e
a
rn
a
s m
u
c
h
a
s yo
u
c
a
n

fro
m
th
e
te
st. F
e
e
d
it b
a
c
k

in
to
th
e
syste
m
.
SUMMARY:
CX DESIGN IS A PROCESS THAT HELPS TEAMS
SHIFT FOCUS FROM PRODUCTS TO PEOPLE.
Te design process puts a dierent spin on the scientic method. It is a
self-correcting system, where hypotheses and new ideas come in, and
tested, validated research comes out - to be fed back in to inform the next
round of new ideas. A CX designers role is one of keeping focus on how
people, products and systems interact - using the process to explore new
ideas before they are brought to market. Tose ideas become the building
blocks of brands because they will be the main touchpoints for customers.
For that reason they can have a great deal of value to both the customer
and the business.
Te dierence between CX design and all the other types of design
(architecture, graphic design, service design, industrial etc.) is that a CX
designer is not tied to a single medium. Architects work in construction,
graphic designers work in 2D media, service designers create service
systems, industrial designers work in manufacturing. But a CX designer
works hand in hand with all of these professions (and several others) to
create a holistic experience for a customer across all media and channels.
Tis design thinking needs to be combined with analytical horsepower
and uency in business management in order to understand the nancial
impact of the work. It also needs to be mixed with a deep understanding
of research methods to build an understanding of the customer, their
preferences and patterns.
In our next article, Te New CX Toolbox, we will discuss these
research and analytical methods in greater detail.
Six Research Toolsets for Building
a Better Customer Connection
by Paul Conder.
Lenati LLC. 2014.
BETTER RESEARCH
MAKES BETTER BUSINESS
For any customer experience initiative to be successful, the
project team needs to be very well informed about the
customers preferences, opinions and behaviors. Tis is
fostered by a complex network of channels, environments,
touchpoints and media. Tats a lot of moving parts, and a
lot of dierent interests to keep in check.
It never ceases to amaze us how much there is to discover
when we embark on a new CX project. Many ideas that
seemed to be givens dissolve the moment we get into the
eld and start talking to people. Over the years, we have
developed a working set of tools that help us get a better
understanding of the customer. Its unlikely that you would
ever use them all on a single project, so knowing how each
tool can extend your capabilities to understand the customer
is key to framing up a project.
Before getting into the toolbox, we need to start by asking what
aspects of the customers experience we want to examine, and
what the scope of the project will be.....
Network Image by peer1.com
PERSONAL
PRACTICAL
CULTURAL
PROFITABLE
From what weve seen there are four conditions that need to be
satised to foster a customer experience that is mutually
benecial to the customer and the company.
Personal. Te customer will be giving their time and their money
in exchange for a product, service and experience - they deserve to
be engaged in a way that is relevant and valuable to them.
Protable. Te balance between operations costs and sales
conversions needs to be positive and worthwhile in the long term.
Practical. Te company needs to be able to eectively
operationalize the approach in the real world.
Cultural. For the customer, the experience needs to be appropriate
for their cultural framework and how they see themselves in it.
From the companys point of view, the aggregate of all these
experiences makes up the building blocks of their brand and its
place in the world.
FOUR CONDITIONS.
PERSONAL
PRACTICAL
CULTURAL
S
O
C
I
A
L

M
E
D
I
A
M
O
B
I
L
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INTERIOR SPACE
A
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WEB DESIGN
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When a customer interacts with a brand, each
aspect of the customer experience is modied
through dierent media and channels. Each of
these can be extremely complex in themselves, can
overlap each other, and are generally managed by
large diverse groups within a company. Tese
groups are often siloed into isolated management
structures, with a lack of communication between
each other. When a single tactic, aimed at
fostering a positive customer experience requires a
holistic approach to be successful, many
management teams are unable to get a complete
view of the terrain.
To dene a research approach - and to dene the
tools needed to follow it through - its important
to ask some questions about the current state
customer experience, for example:
What do we know about the current customer
journey and their prole?
Where are the problem areas or opportunities
that we can identify now?
What do we know about customers perceptions,
preferences and behavior patterns?
How does customer perception drive spend?
What and how do we need to test? What are
our priorities in research areas?
PERSONAL
PRACTICAL
CULTURAL
S
O
C
I
A
L

M
E
D
I
A
M
O
B
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BRAND ANALYSIS
TECHNOGRAPHIC SURVEY
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Te CX Toolbox - the components of which are
shown here in the outer ring - is a set of processes
and research tools to aid in the Discovery and
Testing phases of a CX project. Te toolbox is
aimed at giving a company a better understanding
of how it connects with its customers in the real
world, the experiences that customers are having as
a result, and how all of this relates to business goals
and prot for the company.
In the Ideation phase of a project there are many
creative tools - for example brainstorming, visual
thinking, oblique strategies etc. - that we will cover
in a future article.
EXISTING INTELLIGENCE
STAKEHOLDER WORKSHOP
LIVE DATA INTEGRATION
EXISTING RESEARCH INTEGRATION
BRAND AUDIT
SEGMENTS, PERSONAS AND SCENARIOS
CUSTOMER INPUT
VOICE OF THE CUSTOMER
VOICE OF THE OPERATOR
FOCUS GROUP
WEB FORUM
CUSTOMER DIARIES OR PROBES (MOBILE AND ANALOG)
PARTICIPATORY EXPERIENCE DESIGN
OBSERVATIONAL DATA AND FIELD RESEARCH
ETHNOGRAPHIC RESEARCH
PHOTO / VIDEO ETHNOGRAPHY
FIELD SAFARI
SECRET CUSTOMER
FIELD OBSERVATION - MOBILE ENABLED
ANALYTIC INPUT
ONLINE ANALYTICS
SOCIAL ANALYTICS
BEACON DATA
AUTOMATED ETHNOGRAPHY AND ANALYTICS
MOBILE ANALYTICS
VISUALIZATION
CUSTOMER JOURNEY MAPPING
PERCEPTIONS AND EXPECTATIONS OVERLAY
TOUCHPOINT / AFFORDANCES OVERLAY
OPERATIONS OVERLAY (STAKEHOLDER MAP)
LIFECYCLE MAPPING
CUSTOM DATA VIZ
OPERATIONS AND PROCESS ANALYSIS
DESIGN RESEARCH
LAB SIMULATION
ROLEPLAY
PROTOTYPE INTERVENTION
SOFT PROTOTYPING
PAPER PROTOTYPING
MECHANICAL TURK PROTOTYPING
FIELD PROTOTYPING
ALPHA AND BETA TESTING
1.
2.
3.
4.
5.
6.
The CX Toolbox splits nicely into six toolsets - each
one with a different area of focus. These are not
necessarily used in a linear sequence - for example
customer input could be obtained at several points
in a project as concepts are developed.
Photo: Mark ORourke
TOOL
STAKEHOLDER WORKSHOP
BUSINESS DATA
INTEGRATION
EXISTING RESEARCH
INTEGRATION
BRAND AUDIT
SEGMENTATION AUDIT
PERSONAS AND SCENARIOS
THE EXISTING INTELLIGENCE TOOLSET helps integrate the
knowledge that is already embedded in the company into the Discovery Phase of
a CX research project. Every company has a set of prior learnings, colloquial
knowledge, existing research and nancial data that can provide context and key
insights for understanding how the company currently connects with its
customers. Tese tools can also be used to bring stakeholders into the
conversation who otherwise would not be heard. Additionally, these tools can be
used to help the company identify gaps in its customer knowledge, to better grasp
the companys brand and corporate culture, and to help build consensus amongst
the key stakeholders.
USES
To draw out existing knowledge from leadership
and key stakeholders.
To build dialogue and directional consensus within
the project team.
To integrate current transactional data, purchasing
patterns, loyalty program data and other available
metrics into the research.
To continuously update CX outcomes.
To leverage work already done by the company
around customer patterns and behaviors, service
and operational systems.
To understand past successes and challenges
To understand how the company is perceived in-
market, and how leadership sees it evolving.
To understand gaps between brand vision and the
actual perceptions in-market and in-house.
To understand how the company views and groups
its customers, their needs and drivers - providing
insight on how to reach out to new customers, and
better engage existing ones.
To build iconic proles that are representative of
customer groups or segments - providing a set of
criteria that dene who the customer is, aligned
with their wants, needs and motivators.
APPROACH
Develop and facilitate a set of workshop activities aimed at
fostering a conversation between diverse stakeholder
groups on key topic areas and project questions. Document
and share results across the project team.
Review existing data availability at the start of the project,
to ascertain reliability and depth of information to aid
understanding of real-world patterns. Inventory and
integrate useful data sources, translating as needed.
Inventory past research into customer patterns,
segmentation, marketing and sales strategy. Critique and
lter by current relevance and alignment with project
direction. Integrate ndings to guide new research.
Build a view of how the company is perceived inside and
out - this can vary enormously with required scope. It
could start with simple stakeholder input, but scale up to
focus groups, social listening and secondary research.
Assess current customer segmentation, and how useful it is
in building a model to acquire or engage customers. If
needed, research customer base to oer insights on how to
build a more accurate and useful model.
Using research about customer segments and behaviors
gathered through ethnography, surveys and other means,
compile representative proles of typical customers that
describe each group. Answer the question who is this?
LIMITATIONS
Can be more useful for building a
cultural understanding of the
company than generating new
ndings or ideas.
Non-compatible and outdated
data systems can require
investment to translate or lead to
limited results.
Existing research can be based on
out-of-date customer needs,
technographic or cultural criteria.
Relying on a company-centric
view can lead to an idealized
version of the brand, far removed
from actual customer perceptions.
Existing segmentation models, if
built for another purpose, might
not provide a useful framework for
improving customer engagement.
Many companies have built
personas without deep research to
support them, leading to highly
idealized, erroneous proles being
put in use.
1.
TOOL
VOICE OF THE CUSTOMER
VOICE OF THE OPERATOR
FOCUS GROUP
WEB FORUM
CUSTOMER DIARIES
OR PROBES
PARTICIPATORY
CX DESIGN
THE CUSTOMER INPUT TOOLSET incorporates the customers point
of view into the Discovery Phase of a CX design project. For all tools show
below, it is critical to work with a sample of customers that is as representative as
possible of your actual customer base. As with any research design, the answers
will only be as good as the questions - the quality of the data will be dependent
on the sensitivity of the researcher not just to the experience of the customer
generally, but also their experience of the survey.
USES
To draw out customer opinions and perceptions
about a company, its products and services.
To build an understanding of the employees
experience, with the pretext that a sta member
can only deliver high-quality service if they are
empowered and enabled to do so.
To collect input from a group of either sta or
customers to understand their perceptions of a
product or service before it is launched.
Similar in some ways to a focus group, but
conducted in an online environment - constraints
of time, cost and location can be greatly reduced.
To build a detailed personal view of the customers
experience and a document of a continuous
customers journey.
To bring the customers own insights into the
creative process directly.
APPROACH
Trough a combination of surveys (either in person, via
direct intercept or online) and / or facilitated group
workshops - record, tabulate and analyze a sample group
of customers answers to questions about the company.
Similar in approach to Voice of the Customer, above -
except with a representative sample of sta instead of
customers. Use the opportunity to draw out both insights
about the customers experience and that of the sta itself.
Assemble a group of representative customers or potential
target customers and work through a series of activities
aimed at drawing out the groups opinion around their
experiences engaging with a product or service.
Bring a representative group of customers together in an
online setting, either by video or simple chat, to engage in
an open conversation about their experiences.
Distribute either paper or digital (app-based, including
photo, video and sound) diary tools to a sample group -
have them record their experiences in their own words as
they engage with a product or service.
Bring a group of customers into the actual design process
through the discovery and creative phases. Encourage
their input, especially into new concepts. Tis usually
works best with expert customers who are passionate
about the end result.
2.
LIMITATIONS
Many topics in CX are too subtle
to be summed up consciously by a
customer in an interview, and need
to be discovered in other ways.
Tere can be an implicit urge for
sta to impress their superiors or
please the researcher, resulting in
some problems being downplayed.
Many customers have diculty
imagining a future state, and so will
be better at giving feedback based
on existing paradigms only.
Communication, cross-pollination
of ideas and empathy between
participants in an online
environment is limited.
Tere can be a tendency for
inconsistent documentation from
person to person - creating a data
set that is skewed.
Choose your participants wisely!
An example of a well constructed
group was for the development of
Lego Mindstorms - see the case
study here: archive.wired.com/
wired/archive/14.02/lego.html
TOOL
ETHNOGRAPHIC RESEARCH
PHOTO/VIDEO
ETHNOGRAPHY
FIELD SAFARI
SECRET CUSTOMER
ETHNOGRAPHIC RESEARCH
(TABLET ENABLED)
THE FIELD RESEARCH TOOLSET is used to build a rich set of observational
data about customer behavior for use in the Discovery Phase of a CX project. Most
of these techniques are derived from anthropology or sociology. Te term
ethnography comes from the late 19th century, when Western researchers interested
in the cultures of indigenous peoples found that they could only understand their
subjects if they made observations up close - observing behavior and interaction in the
real world rather than basing their research on hearsay or conjecture. Tis thinking
has been adopted into the eld of Customer Experience - with teams of researchers
being dispatched to watch customers in the eld, hopefully without signicantly
altering the terrain as they make their observations. While these techniques were
originally developed for the physical environment, they have been adapted to call
centers, online and other service areas.
USES
To build a deep understanding of customer
behavior patterns in the real world.
Similar to the above, but using photo and video to
extend the reach of the study and document
ndings in real time.
To draw out the insights from a group of
customers, the rst time they engage directly with
a brand - recording both behaviors and personal
input.
To document the customers journey rst hand,
with the benet of a researchers POV.
To minimize the eect of the presence of the
observer on the outcomes of the study itself.
Similar to ethnography, above - but using the
recording capacity and speed of a digital handheld
or tablet device to record high volumes of
observational data in real time.
APPROACH
Deploy observers into a representative sample of eld
locations to observe customer behavior in the context of
the service environment, without disrupting the customer
or context. Record observations for later analysis.
Use photo and video techniques to create a more extensive
document of customer behavior patterns at several
locations at once. Tis can be augmented with automated
systems to show density and velocity of customer trac.
Bring a target group of customers into a service
environment for the rst time - record ethnographic
observations during the engagement AND customer
feedback afterwards to get a clear idea of rst impressions.
Deploy a group of researchers into the service
environment, disguised as real customers, and prepared
with an observational framework and scenario to engage
with the service. Record observations for later analysis.
Using a tablet, handheld or similar device, build a custom
framework that records ethnographic data, allowing the
researcher to record more data with less encumbrance in
the eld. Lenati has developed a proprietary tablet-based
ethnographic research tool (T-BERT) that can be
customized based on client needs.
3.
LIMITATIONS
Tis approach can yield a very high
quality view of the customers
behavior - but can be expensive to
implement across a broad sample.
Te collection of video is the least
expensive part of this process -
reviewing and analyzing it involves
signicant time and resources.
Similar to customer voice
techniques, customers can only give
feedback on things they engage
with on a conscious level.
Te acting ability of the researcher
can limit the test. Sta can react
negatively to being observed if the
test is discovered.
Cost of developing the recording
app might not be justied by the
potential benets of having more
data. (Lenatis system gets around
this challenge by being pre-built)
TOOL
ONLINE ANALYTICS
SOCIAL LISTENING
BEACON DATA
AUTOMATED
ETHNOGRAPHY
MOBILE ANALYTICS
APP ANALYTICS
THE ANALYTICS TOOLSET analyses observational data collected from
digital sources to inform the Discovery Phase of a project. It can also be used to
create a cross-channel model, integrating data from other sources including eld
research and nancial data. For example, links can be found between touchpoint
design characteristics, customer behaviors and revenue. Or relationships between
online and oine behaviors can be linked with spending across channels. Te
amount of data that can come from studies like this can be massive, so having the
analytical chops to nd real patterns in the data is key to a projects success. For a
deeper dive in this area, see our article Te Phygital Customer available from
lenati.com/cx.
USES
To build an understanding of your customers
behavior online, particularly in the context of e-
commerce.
To listen in on public channels of social media to
learn what your customers say about you.
To respond in real time in the customers medium
of choice.
To use low energy bluetooth signals from a mobile
device to track the near-exact location of
customers in a physical environment.
To use surveillance systems, either through wi
positioning or video, coupled with real time image
processing, to capture movements and dwell times
of customers in a physical space.
To understand patterns of customer interaction
through mobile channels.
To draw out purchase patterns, browsing
behaviors, loyalty data and other behavioral metrics
while using a proprietary app that a customer has
installed on their mobile device.
APPROACH
Integrate search engine analytics, website data, click-
through data from online advertising, cookie data and
other online sources to understand patterns of interaction
around your online brand.
Use readily available platforms to make real-time
observations of public social media channels - searching
for mentions of your company, services, promotions or
products. Many companies (for example Burberry) are
able to respond in a few seconds to comments/complaints.
Install a network of beacons into the environment, capable
of tracking the position of opted-in smart phones. Use the
data to understand customer patterns and to push relevant
oers and messaging based on customer location.
Tere are several services available (for example Nomi,
Swarm, RetailNext and Euclid) that oer customer trac
analytics integrated with sales data. For more information,
see our article In-Store Analytics Solutions at
lenati.com/cx. Data from these systems can be integrated
directly into CX research projects, or used to create live
dashboards of customer patterns.
Tere are three areas of study to integrate - anonymous
mobile usage data purchased from telcos, mobile website
analytics and wi- usage in the service environment.
Develop and promote the use of an app that provides a
clear benet to the customer (past purchases, assisted
browsing, loyalty programs, special oers etc.) and collects
key usage and purchasing data from those who opt in.
4.
LIMITATIONS
Blocked cookies, ad ltering and
privacy networks can block or
misrepresent data for some users,
resulting in some skewed results.
Not all social channels are able to be
scanned, and each network skews to
a dierent demographic and user
prole. You probably arent listening
to your entire customer base here.
Beacons can only track users that
have opted in, and are on the
network. Many customers are
hesitant to be tracked.
While this technique can give a lot
of useful data, it is not a
replacement for eld observation,
which can capture a much deeper
set of behavioral information - right
the way down to emotional cues and
social interactions.
Many customers feel that even
anonymous tracking via mobile is an
invasion of their privacy.
Tracking app usage patterns only
works for those who have opted in,
and this is typically a very limited
and skewed sample.
TOOL
CUSTOMER JOURNEY
MAPPING
PERCEPTIONS AND
EXPECTATIONS
OVERLAY
TOUCHPOINT +
AFFORDANCES
OVERLAY
OPERATIONS +
PROCESSES
OVERLAY
LIFECYCLE MAPPING
CUSTOM DATA VIZ
THE VISUALIZATION TOOLSET helps CX research teams during the
Discovery and Ideation Phases nd patterns in customer behavior by creating
images from the research data - related to the physical, digital and service
environment. For a deeper dive into customer journey mapping and related
techniques, visit lenati.com/cx.
USES
To build a clear picture of how groups of
customers interact with your company and your
brand, calling out moments of engagement,
challenges and opportunities to make a better
connection along the way.
To visualize the customers journey from their
point of view, layering customer voice data into the
journey map to anticipate expectations and brand
perceptions at each step.
To tie the customer journey to the digital and
physical touchpoints that customer encounter
To correlate painpoints, softspots and
opportunities with digital and physical space.
To map the operational framework behind the
customer journey, accounting for service
interactions, the sta journey, operations and
capital costs, workow. Digital and physical.
To extend the understanding of the customer
journey to include the entire relationship with the
brand - from rst contact to maturity.
To enhance the view of specic aspects of the
customers journey - using data visualization
techniques to nd previously undiscovered patterns
in customer behaviour.
APPROACH
Map the experiences the customer engages in along their
journey, as observed in the research. Base this on real-
world ndings, not on imaginary personas. Keep your
focus on the customers POV and use language that
emphasizes the subjective, the active and the personal.
Incorporate data from customer voice research around
customer perceptions and expectations at each point.
Answer the question What are the customers needs and
wants here? How are we meeting them?
Map the digital and physical touchpoints - from large scale
(e.g. architecture) to small and personal (e.g. mobile app)
into the framework. How are these items helping to
enable the customer experience? If they arent why are they
in the customers space?
Repeat the above process to match the service and
operational framework to customer journey. How can this
be streamlined to improve service and provide a better
customer connection?
Zoom out to show the framework of acquisition and
engagement pathways for each segment. Tis is likely such
a large scale that it shouldnt be incorporated into the
Journey framework discussed above.
Tis technique should only be used to solve for very
specic problems or opportunities to seek out patterns in
the data - and it is very dependent on data analysis tools
that are available. Jump 3 pages ahead to see an example.
5.
LIMITATIONS
Tis is a fairly abstract view of
aggregate data which can confuse
some viewers - for a more granular
approach, consider storyboarding.
Tis layer (and others) will only be
as good as the data from previous
VoC research - but VoC can be very
subjective and dicult to obtain.
Overemphasizing this part of the
customer journey map can lead to
an operational bias in how it is
viewed, shifting focus away from
actual customer patterns
Focus needs to be placed on the
operators journey and associated
support systems - not a complete
view of every back of house system.
Capturing data for a map of this
scale - often spanning years of
engagement - can be a challenge.
Tere can be a tendency to create
beautiful visualization from all this
data - that might not carry much
relevant information.
Data Visualization Of Customer Patterns
In A Physical Environment.
Using Lenatis Tablet-based ethnographic research
tool (T-BERT) an extensive dataset was collected,
including customer browsing patterns, pathing,
emotional cues, group pattern behavior, and
service interactions. This was then mapped to
sales data to create a performance-based model of
the environment. Using a proprietary visualization
system, the data was mapped into an image of the
store to reveal density of customer activity and
spending. The same technology can be applied to
other industries that involve complex customer
pathing - for example healthcare, banking, food &
beverage and transportation.
SOCIAL SOCIAL SOCIAL
MOBILE MOBILE
IN STORE FOLLOW UP ONLINE
ORIENTING
LOCATING
SEARCHING
DISCOVERING/
SELECTING
TRYING
PURCHASING
SELECTING
PURCHASING
CUSTOMER
PATHING
PRODUCT ENGAGEMENT
ACTIVATION PRODUCT RETIREMENT
OPERATIONAL
ZONES
PRODUCT and
SERVICE
OFFERINGS
TOUCHPOINTS
AND
AFFORDANCES
BRAND CUES AND
MESSAGING
CUSTOMER
EXPERIENCES
PHYSICAL
DIGITAL
Customer Journey Mapping
A customer journey map is a visualization of customer
experiences, aligned to a sequence or process chart. They
can take many forms - the one pictured here is a simple
sketch created by a leadership team of an omnichannel
retailer. The map starts with the customer experiences laid
out in the center - enabled through both physical (orange)
and digital (blue) media. Connections are made along likely
paths made by different customer groups. The product and
service offerings, operational zones, service interactions,
physical and digital touchpoints and messaging are layered
into the map - bringing focus to bottlenecks, painpoints and
softspots in the process. Similar to the data viz technique
on the previous page, Customer Journey mapping has been
adapted to several industries that deal with complex
customer interactions and processes.
TOOL
SOFT AND PAPER
PROTOTYPING
LAB PROTOTYPING
MECHANICAL
TURK
WORKING PROTOTYPE
INTERVENTION
FIELD PROTOTYPING
THE DESIGN RESEARCH TOOLSET provides techniques for informing
a test of CX concepts during the Prototype / Testing phase of a CX project. In
the process of creating a new CX strategy, this stage is often downplayed due to
the high cost of creating a functional prototype - but many lower-cost options are
available to get the bugs worked out and inform the research and design teams.
Te toolset below is arranged in order of cost, from the lowest to the highest.
Tis is usually the same order in which these tools are employed - testing more
ideas faster and cheaper at the beginning - and testing the more rened ideas
using more accurate methods later in the process after the rst ideas were weeded
out. In fact, the rst few tools are commonly used in the previous Ideation
Phase of a project to inform the team about their ideas as they work.
USES
Using extremely simple and inexpensive means to
test basic concepts for customer interaction.
Testing a concept in a controlled environment
without aecting the perceptions of the general
market.
Testing an interactive system without having to go
to the expense of building out the AI or database
portions - replacing them with an operator who is
out of sight of the subject.
Testing a fully functional prototype in a real-world
environment, intervening in a customer journey
with a realistic model of a concept.
More extensive testing in multiple locations,
testing for variations by market, geography, etc.
APPROACH
Devise the simplest and the least expensive ways to test an
idea - for example model an app using a pad of paper and
marker to represent the interface, or create cardboard and
acrylic mockups for physical objects or environments.
Modify the models quickly as the concepts are assessed.
Tese models should be seen as sketches of ideas -
disposable, inexpensive and quick. Move on to more
denitive prototypes when the best path is chosen.
In a studio or workshop environment, work through test
scenarios like service interactions, mock-up environments,
digital interfaces etc. Run subjects through the scenarios,
using similar methods as described for the discovery phase
of the project.
Build a mock-up of a digital interface on an appropriate
hardware platform - but allow the role of the computer to
be played by a member of the research team through the
back-end of the interface, connected through a network.
Collect data on test subjects preferences and behavior for
use in further developing the interface.
Build implement and test an accurate working model of the
concept in the actual environment - this could be an
environment, a physical touchpoint, digital interface,
website or app. Use previous toolsets as applicable to gain
insights on customer patterns and business impact.
Repeat the working prototype test, but at multiple
locations, sampled to be representative of the companys
reach and future target markets.
6.
LIMITATIONS
Soft models can be easily
misinterpreted by those who arent
accustomed to mock-ups produced
by inexpensive means. Tis can lead
to misunderstandings around the
purpose of the test. Also, many
features cannot be tested eectively
using simple media.
Te controlled environment can
produce ndings that do not
replicate in the real world due to
unforeseen environmental
interactions.
Without clear guidelines, it is easy
for the operator to overstep the
abilities of an actual digital interface,
giving a false sense of do-ability
for a concept.
Te cost of building fully-
functioning prototypes can seem
very high for many types of
touchpoints. However, these last two
tools represent the last opportunities
to eliminate any potential mis-steps
before they intersect with the
customer. Plan for the cost and
timing of a real-world test.
AFTERWORD:
PEOPLE > TOOLS
While these toolsets can be extremely powerful in the hands of
an experienced research and design team, its important to
remember that they are only a means to an end. Teir value lies
in how much they help build an understanding of the customer.
Tere has been a lot of attention paid to big data as customer
insights have become more and more data-heavy. Our analytical
capacity has exploded in the last few years. It has a lot of
potential upside for business, and that has had a lot of press.
With all that attention, we need to guard against the allure and
the power of the tools themselves overwhelming our industry and
relegating something as broad-reaching as Customer
Experience to some kind of digitally-enabled game of numbers.
But overall my concern is outweighed by my optimism, fueled by
the potential Ive seen in these tools to foster better design, better
business practices, and stronger connections with people.
THE NEW PATHS TO PURCHASE
Customers arent connecting with companies the way they did
even a few years ago. Its dicult to overstate the enormity of the
change as companies adapt to new channels, and try to meet their
customers on their own ground. And this change is only going to
accelerate as new channels come into being and recombine to face
the customer. All we know for sure is that most companies (over
three quarters of them according to Forrester Research, 2013) are
working hard to evolve their approach - and that the approach will
probably be partially obsolete by the time it is crystallized into
sales and marketing tactics on the ground.
Older models, which are still taught in some form today, often
visualized the customers path to purchase as an inverted pyramid
or funnel, with customers following a simple linear path. Every
point of contact was about moving the customer to the next step,
and then driving the sale. A few years ago this was a reasonable
way to look at the process.
We could see this changing as early as the mid 1990s as the web
was adopted into business and everyday life - but the seismic shift
in customer patterns didnt peak until the online world became
simultaneously social and mobile. Tats when e-commerce came
o the desktop and collided head-on with other, more mature
channels. Te physical overlapped with the digital. Now, an entire
generation has been raised in a phygital culture where anything is
accessible, from several sources, through any channel, at any time.
TEN WAYS TO CONNECT
WITH YOUR CUSTOMERS IN AN
OMNICHANNEL UNIVERSE
by Paul Conder
Lenati LLC
2014
1. OMNICHANNEL CUSTOMER JOURNEY MAPPING
Tink of all the ways your customer connects with your company.
How many dierent moving parts are involved in fostering that
connection? Everything from customer service to interior design to
social media channels to web interactions to traditional media all
come into play. You even need to consider the operations and
infrastructure that supports all these connections - where are your
products manufactured? how much energy do you use? how do you
support a customer after-purchase? - and how all of these operations
can become visible to your customer, especially when things to wrong.
Te key to creating a holistic view of your customers journey is to
build a map of each of their interactions over time, and across
channels, from their point of view. As channel models become more
complex, newer models of customer journey mapping have been
developed.
Consider two paths to purchase. - One typical of a customer a few
years ago, and one now. Te rst case might look like this:
Awareness was built through traditional media and word of mouth
Interest was reinforced with possible contact with a sales touchpoint
Consideration usually involved person-to-person consultation.
Purchase was also in person at a physical location.
Follow-through was usually spotty, if it happened at all. A bill
would be sent in the mail, most one-time purchases had no follow-
through, large purchases warranted a phone-call.
AWARENESS
INTEREST
CONSIDERATION
PURCHASE
FOLLOW THROUGH
OLD MODEL
photo: Garry Knight
In our second case the customers journey might look
more like this:
Te customer becomes aware of a brand through
social media.
She becomes more interested through repeated
contact through multiple channels. She may simply
purchase online at this point - or....
She may need rst-hand contact with the product or
service - in which case she reserves it online, and
visits a physical location.
During the visit, she uses her smartphone to connect
with social media. She looks at competitors pricing
on the web. She uses the companys app to access a
promotion. She compares online pricing.
Te customer decides to purchase. During the
process, a second o-site product has caught the
customers interest. - No problem. - It will be ordered
and shipped to her directly from the e-commerce site.
During the process, she has opted in for sharing her
information with the company. Tis is used to follow
up with her in a personalized way.
Te rst customers journey could be visualized on a simple linear
path. Te second model requires another dimension that tracks
options through various channels, many of which are in play
simultaneously. As always, it is important to visualize this journey
from the point of view of the customer themselves. Painpoints and
softspots in the journey should be considered as you go, developing a
clear brief for creative. Tere are many ways to visualize this - the one
pictured here is only one example.
For a deep dive on customer journey mapping, see our articles Te
New CX Toolbox and Customer Journey Mapping - both available
from lenati.com.
AWARENESS
linkedin
website
twitter
blog
linkedin
blog
INTEREST
website
PURCHASE?
CONSIDERATION
website
linkedin
app
PURCHASE
e-commerce
site
e-commerce
site
FOLLOW UP
app
social
customer
support
loyalty (app)
DIGITAL
MOBILE
PHYSICAL
W
E
B
S
O
C
I
A
L
I
N
-
P
E
R
S
O
N
A
P
P
NEW MODEL
According to Googles Mobile In-Store
Research (2013) Shoppers who use
mobile more, spend more in-store:
Frequent mobile shoppers spend 25% more in-
store than people who only occasionally use a
mobile phone to help with shopping. And 1 in
3 prefer to use their phone for self help in
store, rather than asking staff.
2. ALIGNING MANAGEMENT ACROSS CHANNELS
Many companies - and the agencies and consultancies that work for them
- took a siloed approach to building out their companies as channel
options started to grow. Tis probably made some sense at the time -
making separate business units for each channel allowed for rapid growth
in the short term. But that didnt help the customer. Let the fun begin:
A conversation a customer was having in one channel didnt carry over to
another. I was on the website - I put all my information in, and then your
site crashed my browser - now Ive been on hold for an hour and you need
all my info again!!?? $%*@!
Prices and promotions dont align. It costs how much if I buy it from you?
your own website has it for half that!
After a wonderful, personal experience learning about a service, the experience
at purchase is lengthy and horrible. Why do you need my address from ve
years ago for me to get a new phone?
Usually these problems stem from how the company is organized and
managed. Each channel is operated separately by people who arent co-
ordinating with each other around the customers journey and the
companys brand. None of them are empowered to work across
channels to make a better experience - and the companys operations
and supply chain take precedent over building connections with
customers. Weve seen some companies where each VP is somehow
visible in the design of their website or store interior. Te result is
clutter and disorganization.
In the long term, there is only one way to combat this problem - from
the top down. Te top leadership of the company needs to have a clear
vision for how the brand manifests itself across all channels, and then
bring the silos into alignment.
CX integration = integration of services = co ordination of teams.
Photo: Lauren Manning.
3. REDUCING EFFORT vs SURPRISE & DELIGHT
Tere are two competing approaches to cross-channel customer
experience - and they are both valid depending on the customers
context. Tere seems to be some confusion around which approach best
suits each channel.
First is the premise that customers should be surprised and delighted at
every step of their journey. Customer service, website, app, and
especially in-person interactions should be of the highest quality,
personalized, compelling and memorable. I believe that this approach
stems from older service models, where the industry benchmark was
high-service, one-to-one interactions. Tink of the kind of service you
would expect from a high-end tailor. - In-person channels can demand
personal service.
Te second approach relates to how much eort is required on the part
of the customer. In his book Te Eortless Experience Matthew
Dixon explains that expensive initiatives on the part of brands to stage
compelling experiences often lead to no improvement in loyalty - or
worse. According to his research, a customer service interaction is four
times more likely to foster disloyalty than loyalty. He found that 57% of
inbound calls to call centers come from people who were on the website
and couldnt nd what they wanted. If you are booking an airline ticket
online or paying a parking ne, the last thing you want is to take the
time and eort to be delighted and surprised by call center sta.
Sculpture by Yayoi Kusama, Photographed at Naoshima Japan..
In CX design, the approach you take should be dependent on the
channels in question, the characteristics of brand, and on the
expectations of your customer. Most transactions or queries -
especially those in digital channels - improve with increased
simplicity and ease of use. Te less information the customer needs
to provide, the lower the wait times, the less keystrokes, the better.
But this isnt always the case for in-person experiences. A luxury
purchase guided by the personal touch of a well-trained sales
associate, the brief conversation with a barista, or the extra moment
spent with a family doctor can all be worth that extra bit of time and
eort. Tere is a tendency for designers to aim to make every
experience this compelling - which unfortunately can lead to a lot of
misplaced investment - but sometimes this connection is the essence
of the brand.
In architecture, there is a saying if you cant hide it, make it a
feature - in other words, anything that is visible to the visitor needs
to be meaningful, and everything else needs to disappear completely.
Te same can be said for CX - reduce the customers eort where
you can. Everywhere else, align the experience to brand.
REDUCE EFFORT WHERE YOU CAN.
IF NOT, ALIGN EXPERIENCE TO BRAND.
4. CREATING CONSISTENT EXPERIENCES
ACROSS CHANNELS
Te explosion of communication channels has altered how we interact
with brands and with each other on a fundamental level.
We can be present in multiple channels at once.
We can bring competitors into once-private conversations.
We can be extremely well informed.
We are in social relationships with hundreds of people around the world.
We have a dierent system of values than we did a few years ago.
We have very high expectations
And we are extremely ckle.
People tend to consciously notice the channel they are using only when
something goes wrong - a website crashes, there is a long wait in the
emergency room, or the call-center drops a call. Once a channel has
been adopted and the novelty of it wears o, its use becomes second
nature. All of the customer characteristics mentioned above are usually
only noticeable from the outside - for example from the point of view of
a company that is trying to do business in these channels and needs to
build systems to allow people to do what now comes naturally. Our
customers are way ahead in understanding how this should all work. Its
our job to catch up.
Older communications channels (TV, radio, print) eectively broadcast
the same message to a large group - and newer channels (web, social,
mobile) enable more of a conversation between companies and people.
So aligning experiences across channels starts with being ready to have a
consistent conversation wherever the customer is present.
Te next points are all hinge on that principle.
Real time visualization of major internet nodes by PeerOne Hosting iPhone app. peer1.com
5. MESSAGING
You can assume that the customer has access to an enormous
amount of information about you and your company. - So at all
points and all channels, you need to be ready with a consistent
message about:
product
service
pricing
Tis is usually the rst place companies fall down in an
omnichannel space. Getting this right is the low hanging fruit.
While top-down approaches are not as in-favor as they used to
be, they have their advantages here - a strong customer-centric
vision from the top management needs to be disseminated
through every facet of the company for this to work.
fullment and delivery
follow-up
operations
6. TRANSPARENCY
With all the information about your company that is online
and with many customers (especially younger ones) becoming
more conscious about who they do business with, the way your
company does business is every bit as important as what you
are selling. Your brand, your ethics and values, where and how
you operate your business are all on display. Window-dressing
and a veneer of social responsibility dont cut it. Your company
needs to be everything it claims.
Real time visualization of major internet nodes by PeerOne Hosting iPhone app. peer1.com
7. DATA COLLECTION
Tere has been an explosion in the amount of data that can be
collected about your customers patterns and preferences.
Insights can be collected and collated across channels - from
behaviors, pathing, emotional cues and dwell-times in a physical
environment (hospital, retail space, airport) to online browsing
and social media patterns, there is no shortage of information
available about how your customer is connecting with you. In
response, customers expectations are shifting in two opposite
ways:
Concerns about privacy around how the data is used and collected.
Higher expectations of service now that the data is available.
Tere is no one-size-ts-all method that will tell you what kind
of data your customer expects you to collect and how they will
expect you to use it. Some industries - for example nance and
healthcare - need to be extremely sensitive and cognizant of
privacy - but the potential upside to the customer could be
enormous (even life-saving) if all the right service providers can
get access to the right information about the customer at the
right time. Tis balance needs to be carefully considered for
each business, and co ordinated throughout the organization.
Real time visualization of major internet nodes by PeerOne Hosting iPhone app. peer1.com
8. CHANNEL OPTIONS
In the simpler path to purchase model illustrated earlier,
customers had much less choice in which channels they used. - It
was easy to confuse this limitation with the idea that the company
controlled the choice of channel itself. Now with the proliferation
of channels it has become evident to even the most backward
company that the customer is actually the one in control.
Tis doesnt mean that you need to be present in every single
possible channel. Much of the shift towards digital has been
driven by potential cost savings as older, physical or more labor
intensive channels become repurposed or obsolete - while still
resulting in a much-improved customer experience, combining
digital and physical channels.
Some examples of omnichannel thinking:
Uber implemented an app-based system to hail and pay for
limousine service - bypassing many of the hassles typical in the
customers experience of a taxi, while greatly cutting costs.
American Airlines used social media to alert the public about
shut-downs during super-storm Sandy- getting word out
quicker and to more people at less cost. It is now one of the
airlines key communication channels.
Royal Bank of Canada has been questioning the role of their
physical locations as more services go online. Te response is a
digitally-enabled streamlined service framework in banks that
oers highly personalized service, with many transactions being
accomplished cheaper and easier online.
photo of Tibesti Mountains and Tributaries, Chad, by Juan Ramon Rodriguez Sosa, Creative Commons
9. THE POWER OF THE PERSONAL PROFILE
Notwithstanding the previous point about the balance between
privacy and service expectations - customers seem to be less and
less tolerant of companies that are unwilling to create a
personalized experience. For this to work across channels, a secure
and robust prole about the customers history, preferences, and
interactions with the company needs to be constructed - with the
customers permission. It also means that it needs to be shared -
very carefully - on an as needed basis - with all services that come
into contact with the customer. Tis can mean:
Reducing service/wait times by using prole data to pre-
enable a transaction.
Curating and recommending choices for the customer based
on previous purchases or social input.
Increasing sales motion by opening up more channels for a
customer to connect. (e.g. order from mobile, pick up
immediately at a location of their choice, make a
recommendation when they arrive, follow up by email.)
Eliminating the need to provide information repeatedly when
switching between channels.
Providing incentives or rewards to increase loyalty.
gel electrophoresis of DNA, photo by MNolf.
10. OPT-IN
Many data collection methods may look great from a companys
point of view, but can be intrusive (or downright creepy) from the
point of view of the customer. Wi can allow you to track the
movements of people in a physical space through their phones,
cookies can track people online, cameras can be installed almost
anywhere - but for every new technology there is an example of a
company that has gotten into a public-relations nightmare by
implementing them without the customers consent.
Te safest approach in almost every case, at least until another
cultural shift comes our way, is to ask customers to opt-in to the
program. Be completely transparent about how the data is being
collected and used, and stick to your own rules without exception.
It may be appropriate and helpful to provide incentives or loyalty/
rewards to the customer who opts-in, in exchange for the
information that is collected.
While this seems like a fairly new area of focus, it has actually
been in common practice in several industries. For decades,
nancial institutions, airlines and charities have been designing
programs where the customer knowingly exchanges information
for rewards.
photo: Maximilian Schnherr
I am enthusiastic over humanitys
extraordinary and sometimes very timely
ingenuity. If you are in a shipwreck and all
the boats are gone, a piano top buoyant
enough to keep you afloat that comes along
makes a fortuitous life preserver. But this is
not to say that the best way to design a life
preserver is in the form of a piano top. I
think that we are clinging to a great many
piano tops in accepting yesterdays
fortuitous contrivings as constituting the
only means for solving a given problem.
! Buckminster Fuller
AFTERWORD:
LET THE CUSTOMER DRIVE THE CHANGE
Taking an omnichannel approach to your business needs to be driven by
the customers needs and expectations - followed by a search for better
opportunities to meet them. Technology can play a role in this, but for
each of the points raised in this article, the most important aspect is how
the business faces the customer. - not the technology and tools to make
it happen.
Te unfortunate tendency is for technology to drive change. According
to a study by Altimeter Research called Digital Transformation, as
corporate budgets for digital marketing, automation, mobile and social
media increase, many companies are letting the technology drive the
change rather than customer preferences. Tis can result in a patchwork
of technology, which is misaligned to the customers expectations and
patterns. In the eld of technology, its easy to be blinded by the novelty
of a new trend without understanding what its signicance or meaning
will be once that novelty has worn o.
Te key to avoiding this is to start with a deep understanding of what
your customers patterns and needs, and where they will likely be in the
coming years. Designing new ways to meet them is a form of
intervention in the customers life - you are placing a new bridge along
their path to allow a connection that wasnt there before. Map their
journey and establish the value proposition to the customer before
committing to rolling it out. Constructing the bridge can be a lot of
work, but its work thats wasted if it has no value for the customer.
photo of geodesic structure by Michael Day
THE ART AND SCIENCE OF CUSTOMER EXPERIENCE
ABOUT LENATI
Lenati is s sales, marketing and customer experience
strategy consulting rm, helping clients build a stronger
customer connection. Competitive advantage today
depends on a companys ability to deliver a rich set of
interactions across the customer lifecycle, ultimately
creating value for the company and the customer. We
have assembled a deeply experienced group of
professionals, blending consulting, analytics, design
and industry backgrounds, delivering innovative
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LENATI LLC
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Seattle WA 98109 USA
1.800.848.1449
lenati.com
info@lenati.com
All articles written by Paul Conder, edited by Erin McMonigal
All photos and illustrations by Paul Conder except where noted.