What is an experience?

 “The process of doing and seeing things, and of having things happen to you.

Organisations are investing more and more every day into improving experiences. We often talk about KPI’s for customer satisfaction, Trustpilot scores, Feefo reviews and “CX” (Customer Experience) results.

Profit margins are directly linked to customer experience. Experience scores are being fed into data metrics, such a NPS, will help businesses to further enhance the value of the customer and that data is fed back to customer service teams.

The Age Of the Customer:

CX is often a top KPI for many organisations. And rightly so. It can help improve brand awareness through customer referrals and positive sentiment. It can help increase the lifetime value of the customer orders. It keeps customers coming back and engaged with brands and it helps businesses grow by listening to their customers.

However, it doesn’t all start with great CX. The customer had to find the brand first at some point. There was a moment in time when they had to have a positive experience to complete their first purchase.

In terms of digital transactions, I’m specifically referring to “UX” (User Experience). This is the journey a customer takes from the first time they saw your brand, whether it was a PPC ad or social media post. From the moment they click to initiate an engagement through to the confirmation of a sale or enquiry, the user experience that customer takes is a critical component to their future relationship with your brand.

UX therefore is an important component of the overall “Customer Experience” of a brand. There is an inherent link and relationship between the two.

Denys Sergushkin illustrates this perfectly in his post CX vs UX

Don’t Forget about UX Research

All too often we see brands investing heavily in improving their CX but actually they’re forgetting about their UX. This is where the journey starts.

Sure, it’s far cheaper to ensure your existing customers are happy. But there’s a fine line between satisfaction and dissatisfaction and the beginning of their journey has a direct impact on the end.

Qualitative UX research is necessary to understand and embed the relationship between the user and the business.

Good UX = Great CX = Increased Revenue 🚀

Look Mom I can Fly!

Building a successful business is a like crafting a paper aeroplane. As a piece of paper it won’t fly without some care and attention first. So you invest a significant amount of time crafting, shaping and folding the paper until it’s in a suitable shape to launch.

You throw your aeroplane into the sky. Sometimes they crash straight away, you haven’t invested enough in crafting your plane – or it’s not right for the conditions. Other times, it flys a long distance, but never really gets to soar.

Typically the trajectory the plane takes is a ascent towards the sky, a short plateau and then down towards to the ground.

Successful businesses continue to soar. Successful businesses have crafted a well thought out plane. Successful businesses continuously invest in UX and CX to keep that plane flying.

How well is your plane flying now? Food for thought.

Here’s one you’ve not probably thought about

UX and CX is specifically focussed on the customer and the outward perception of a brand. However, it’s also important to consider delving within your organisation. Internal beliefs affect external perception.

It is believed that organisational culture exerts its external influences on reputation and experience in different ways.

Researchers have analysed culture and corporate reputation magnifies external stakeholders sense of who the organisation is and thereby enhances their perception of reputation“.

(de Chernatony, 2001; Dowling, 2001; Hatch and Schultz, 2001, 2003)

So if we apply the same principle, then actually great “UX” and “CX” inherently starts from within the business. This is something I have been pondering on lately.

You can invest in great UX, get an agency, conduct research etc but actually if you don’t invest in providing positive experiences internally this can also directly affect the external performance of your business. This is a cultural consideration.

TX or Team Experience is just as critical as UX and CX. Having a motivated and harmonious team and investing in individuals can help ensure the internal experiences feed into the way you engage and communicate with your customers.

97% of employees and executives believe lack of alignment within a team impacts the outcome of a task or project“.

(McKinsey)

Steve Perkins, MD of GoTo Events a professional Teambuilding and Corporate Events company in Dorset states that effective team building can:

  1. Boost Engagement – team building and engagement when done well fosters new workplace friendships. It can also build the trust between office supervisors and managers, and those who work under them. 
  2. Improves communication skills – team building activities require team members to communicate with each other to resolve a problem or win a team competition. Past clients have split their teams  based on people from different departments. This has allowed them to communicate with new people outside of their working group and develop relationships.
  3. Improves creativity – team building puts employees in an environment that requires them to perform tasks and solve problems that are not a part of their daily routine. 
  4. It can attract and retain top talent – team building may help those who are usually sheltered at work, express their skills that in hindsight could help the whole team and improve productivity.

Steve, goes on to write about why Team Building in the workplace is important – it’s worth a read.

Aside from building a great team, ensuring that every member of the organisation understands the relationship between positive internal culture and customer experience is essential.

Having a disgruntled or ineffective team, is not something that can be hidden, it will always come out whether positive or negative. And your customers will know all about it.

Of course UX is probably the most ambiguous here as it related specifically to digital interfaces as opposed to human to human interaction. Though you could argue if an ineffective team applies the UX will they fully consider the customer?

The UX, CX & TX Ecosystem

So, it’s clear from the above that UX, CX and TX are all related and we believe it is a mistake for businesses to invest in one and not all. The relationship between internal and external experiences is close nit and are integral to the success of the business.

Below I have re-imagined the model provided by Denys Sergushkin, now including TX.

So where to start

We often find that a workshop with your team is a great way to engage staff members as well as get them to really consider the customer experience, particularly with our 5 stages of UX Workshop.

Ok, here’s the sales pitch.

We’ve run 100’s of workshops across content, branding, design thinking and UX. Every workshop has a unique output but there are two common threads that every workshop consists of: 1) They always involve internal teams to think deeper about their customers needs and 2) participants always come away feeling energised and motivated.

UX research, both qualitative and quantitative can feed into workshops and not matter what flavour or objective all three experience touchpoints are considered. Why not start by speaking to us about an experience workshop today. 

Written by
Chris Newnham

Chris Newnham

Co-Founder & Director
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