As a CX architect, I am regularly confronted with which use-cases are suitable for improving the customer experience. This question comes not only from sales staff, but often directly from the customers themselves. Companies know their business best, therefore the use-cases should come from them. Our role as CX architects is to advise on how these use-cases can be translated into changes in the digital system landscape. Nevertheless, it can be observed that industry-specific use-cases often repeat themselves. A basic set of use-cases can therefore be a useful starting point for discussions with companies.
I refer to the following guide when a customer asks me how to improve the customer experience in a certain industry. It may also help you define use-cases and bring the benefits of an optimized customer experience into a CX initiative at your company.
Understand the Industry and Audience
First and foremost, in-depth knowledge of the concerned industry is paramount. Embark on a journey of diligent research and become well-acquainted with the sector in question. Absorb the details, identify the major players and comprehend the specific challenges preeminent in the field.
Next, identify the target audience within this industry. Make sure you have a clear understanding of their issues, needs, and preferences. This empathetic approach will place you in a better position to strategically and effectively address them.
Example: In order to create a more effective customer experience as a trade fair, it is essential to analyze the visitors and exhibitors in order to clearly identify the target groups. The fair visitors should be carefully sorted according to their interests, their social environment, and their demographic characteristics. At the same time, it is important to analyze the exhibitors based on their company size, geographical location, product and service portfolios, and growth forecasts. In addition, historical data and experiences from past fairs should be included in the analysis to gain valuable insights.
Define Clear Objectives
Delineate the objectives you strive to accomplish through your customer experience (CX) initiative. Typically, the paramount goals encompass enhancement of customer satisfaction, augmentation of customer loyalty, optimization of process efficiency, and the promotion of innovation and technological advancement.
Example: A potential strategy for a car manufacturer might involve expanding direct customer sales alongside their existing distribution business. This move could enable the company to boost revenue while receiving direct customer feedback, allowing for more targeted and swift market introduction of innovations.
Identify Key Touchpoints
Map out the various touchpoints where customers interact with your business. This could include website, mobile app, customer service, social media, physical locations (if applicable), and more.
Example: An insurance company should tailor its communication to suit the age group of its customers to accommodate their diverse preferences. Older customers typically prefer postal correspondence, while the younger generation wants to be addressed via apps and social media platforms. By offering these appropriate communication channels, the company can increase customer satisfaction and establish long-term customer relationships.
Gather Customer Feedback
Collect data from current customer experiences. Use surveys, interviews, social media listening and analyses of customer support interactions to gain valuable insights. Leverage networking opportunities to interact with industry experts, professionals and other participants. Conduct interviews and discussions to gain comprehensive understanding of their perspectives, needs and expectations. Ask targeted questions to learn more about their challenges, goals and interests, thus improving your understanding. Also use feedback from the media, social platforms and direct product sales channels to continuously collect valuable information.
Segment Your Audience
Segmenting your customer base based on demographics, behavior, and preferences is crucial for enhancing customer satisfaction. It allows for a personalized approach to meet the specific needs of different customer groups. By dividing customers into segments, you gain insights into their unique characteristics and can tailor products, services, and communication strategies accordingly. This enables targeted marketing campaigns, personalized experiences, and relevant content delivery. Regularly reviewing and analyzing segmentation data helps identify trends and opportunities for improvement, ensuring the strategy remains effective. Ultimately, a segmented approach fosters long-term relationships by offering tailored solutions and anticipating customer needs.
Example: Banks serve customers from a wide range of age groups, demographics, financial abilities, social positions and more. Given this diversity, it is crucial to carefully align offers, services, and financial conditions to serve customers in a targeted and efficient manner. It is important to take into account their individual needs and requirements, and perhaps proceed with a delicate touch. This is the only way a bank can appropriately support its customers and provide them with tailor-made solutions.
Develop customer personas representing different segments. These should include detailed information about their needs, pain points, and preferences.
Example: A travel agency interacts with customers who have a range of demands, such as Laura, who seeks adventure trips with a budget-conscious approach, as opposed to Julian, who prefers luxurious itineraries with high-service standards. It is now necessary to develop specific personas for both customer segments that reflect their unique needs and preferences.
Identify Pain Points and Opportunities
Analyze the gathered data to identify pain points in the customer journey. Also, recognize areas where there's potential for improvement or innovation.
A use case for a food chain is to leverage data analysis to identify and address pain points in the customer journey. By analyzing customer feedback and purchase patterns, they can uncover areas where customers experience long wait times during peak hours. To tackle this issue, the food chain can consider implementing a self-ordering kiosk system and mobile app, allowing customers to place orders in advance and reducing wait times. This innovation can lead to improved efficiency and customer satisfaction.
Additionally, data analysis can also highlight customer demands for healthier food options, prompting the food chain to introduce a new menu with nutritious choices, catering to evolving preferences and potentially attracting a broader customer base.
Based on the identified pain points and opportunities, brainstorm CX strategies and initiatives. These could range from technological solutions to process improvements.
Example: In your analysis of pain points and opportunities, you may have noticed that it would greatly enhance the customer experience if support inquiries and negative feedback were promptly handled by the designated contact person. You may have also identified that in the same situation, product advertisements, particularly an impending increase in licensing fees, could significantly impact customer satisfaction and should be prevented. However, a brainstorming session can also generate a multitude of other strategies and initiatives.
Evaluate the potential impact and feasibility of each initiative, considering factors such as available resources, time constraints, and expected return on investment. Prioritize the top three, four, or five use cases that have the greatest potential for sustainable improvement in customer experience.
Draw a Line for Each Use Case
Now, this may sound peculiar, but give it a try: Put yourself in the shoes of your customers and go through each initiative step by step. Imagine yourself being a customer of your own company and try to follow one of the relevant initiatives firsthand.
Here is the Outcome
Let me present the journey of a kite-surfing customer experience (CX) that we have mapped out, starting from the initial contact through a look-alike campaign on Instagram, all the way to the ultimate kite-surfing vacation in La Ventana, Mexico.
Do you notice something? Until now, we haven't even discussed a product, software, or system. Instead, we have shed light on the added value of our initiative from the customer's perspective and derived insights that need to be implemented afterward. And that is precisely the plan: a value-driven approach that translates into a roadmap reflecting the tools within the architecture of implementation.
If you are now inspired to define and implement your own CX use cases, please let us know! We are here to assist you every step of the way.