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The Little Black Book Of Customer Experience Management Definitions

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If you want to be successful with customer experience management, you’ll need a deep understanding of your customers’ journey. You’ll also need to be in the know with customer experience management definitions.

Enter the B Squared Media Little Black Book of CEM Definitions. We’ll update the list periodically so you always have the most updated terms within reach.

We highly recommend you bookmark this page!

Why Is Customer Experience EVERYTHING?

For starters, it’s everything because PwC said so.

But truly, it’s because bad experiences drive customers away faster than ever. The above-linked PwC survey had the following to say about bad customer experience.

  • In the U.S., even when people love a company or product, 59% will walk away after several bad experiences, 17% after just one bad experience.
  • 32% of all customers would stop doing business with a brand they loved after one bad experience. In Latin America, 49% say they’d walk away from a brand after one bad experience.

In other words: We (consumers) don’t have time for your B.S. — but that’s why you’re here, right?! If you want to give your customers a great experience (so they’ll buy more, and be more loyal) check out our customer experience management definitions and other resources below!

Customer Experience Management

First, let’s start with the definitions of customer experience (CX) and customer experience management (CEM or sometimes CXM).

Customer experience is defined by the customer’s perception and feelings around your brand. Moreover, CX put an emphasis on the relationship between a business and its customers. This includes would-be customers, because every interaction with your brand counts towards CX. Yes, even if the interactions don’t result in a purchase.

Customer experience management is the practice of designing, managing, and improving the customer experience at every touchpoint along the customer journey. This includes the digital customer journey. Furthermore, CEM is also sometimes referred to as voice of the customer data.

Voice of customer (VOC). VOC is the data around customer experience that focuses on customer needs, wants, desires, expectations, and preferences.

Next, though the customer is vital, brands get a say too!

Brand experience is how the brand is designed, with an effort to have your customer experience match how you see your brand. Brand experience is similar to customer experience, except that CX refers to how customers define your company (not how you define your brand).

Finally, research by PWC found that 86% of customers are willing to pay more for a better experience. Therefore, for your CEM program to be effective, you need to take a standardized approach to optimizing the customer journey. And that brings me to …

Customer experience program refers to the tools and processes used to carry out your CEM strategy. Essentially, it encompasses all of the terms I’m defining in this post about customer experience management definitions.

Customer Care & CX

We focus on social-led customer care as a service here at B Squared Media. Therefore, we feel it’s important to include several of those definitions along with our customer experience management definitions.

Good CX requires Digital Transformation. This is the process of redesigning your customer journey workflows in order to shift away from traditional, in-person, heavily paper-based interactions. Digital transformation lends to more digital, self-serve experiences.

Customer Service. The process of helping resolve customer issues, answering customer questions, and addressing customer concerns, via an ever-expanding list of channels, including phone support, live chat, social channels, SMS, email, and more.

Customer Care. See above but add in tactics like social listening to move from a reactive customer service mindset to a proactive customer care mindset.

At B Squared Media, we define Social-Led Customer Care as learning what your customers value through social media intelligence and then arming yourself with that data to win the war of attention, trust, and loyalty. Social-led customer care is the service of responding to the specific demands, questions, and pain points of your current and would-be customers via social media.

Customer Signals are datapoints that help uncover what customers are experiencing, thinking, feeling, and doing, collected from a wide range of direct and indirect experience data sources (e.g. surveys, transactions, chats, voice calls, website visits, social media, and more).

Customer Preferences. Known likes, dislikes, or expectations at the individual customer level. For example, the preference to receive updates or support via email, text, or by phone.

Online Knowledge Hub. An online resource center companies create and share to help educate customers about their products and services.

It’s important you start with the above. After that, you can focus on the customer journey.

The Customer Journey

As you’ve now seen, the customer journey is a critical component of CEM. So let’s define it!

The Customer Journey is the path the customer takes, from the moment their need is realized, to purchase, and beyond (like loyalty). Mapping your customer journey will create a visual representation of the various interactions and touchpoints a customer has with your company.

Digital Customer Journey (DCJ). The DCJ is the digital path your customer takes on the path to purchase and beyond. For example, our DCJ puts the customer and customer care at the center of all digital touchpoints to create a self-propelling flywheel.

B-Squared-Media-digital-customer-journey-flywheel-customer-care

While each brand will likely have their own DCJ and stages, everyone will have touchpoints along the customer journey.

Customer Touchpoints. The touchpoints along your customer journey or DCJ are the various interactions when a customer will directly, or indirectly, come into contact with your brand. Customer touchpoints make up the customer journey. Thus, they are key to influencing the customer experience.

Personalization is when brands collect and use customer data and preferences to tailor interactions to the individual. This includes things like using a customer’s first name, suggesting new products based on prior behavioral patterns, and noting/thanking longtime customers.

Customer loyalty describes an ongoing positive relationship between you and your customer, characterized by repeat business.

Brand advocacy is when your customers recommend your brand across their network. This includes family, friends, and co-workers.

Customer Experience Design (CXD).  The design of products and services based on customer insights to ensure every customer touchpoint delivers on your brand promise.

Measuring The Customer Experience

So, how do you gauge the experience your customers are having with your brand? By measuring the customer experience!

Customer intelligence is the collection of customer data for a holistic understanding of your customers. It’s the process of collecting and analyzing customer data.

We use customer analytics to track and visualize our customer behavior data. Think of analytics like retention rate, churn rate, and customer lifetime value (CLV).

Customer insights are hypotheses you’ll make by looking at both quantitative and qualitative customer data.

Customer Sentiment. The feelings and opinions customers have about your brand. We use social listening to capture this and other VOC data.

Customer satisfaction measures how well a brand’s products or services meet customer expectations.

Net Promoter Score (NPS®) measures customer experience and predicts business growth.

Customer Satisfaction Score (CSAT). A CSAT score is the sum of all positive responses for your brand, divided by the total responses collected, then multiplied by 100. The outcome leaves you with the overall percentage of satisfied customers at your business.

In addition, when it comes to customer care, we often look at CES scores. Customer Effort Score (CES) is a CX survey methodology used to measure the effort a customer makes when interacting with your company (e.g. getting a question resolved, purchasing a product).

Next, let’s look at important tools that help with customer experience management.

Customer Experience Management Tools

To start, customer experience tools aid in evaluating issues and opportunities for your clients. Depending on your needs and size, the tools you use will differ from other companies. In other words, the tools you will need will vary.

Omnichannel is an important term (and why you need tools!). Because CX happens on a multitude of channels. Omnichannel means offering a consistent, personalized experience for consumers across all channels and devices — no matter where or how your customers interact with you. CEM tools are your best friend when looking at data across multiple channels.

CRM (Customer Relationship Management) Software. A CRM uses technology to organize, automate, and synchronize business processes—including sales activities, but also those for marketing, customer service, and technical support.

Conversely, if you don’t use a CRM you will need some sort of Customer Database. Your database is a collection of customer records containing customer details. Think: name, contact information, purchase history, demographics, etc.

Social Listening is important for gathering voice of customer and customer sentiment data. Social media listening is the process of identifying and assessing what is being said about a company, individual, product, brand, or other keywords on the internet.

social listening step by step workbook sprout social b squared media

[Check out our FREE social listening workbook with Sprout Social here!]

Customer Experience Platform. A tool or technology that connects behavioral data and feedback about customers’ experiences from a variety of systems, then applies analytics to reveal CX insights for your company.

Help center or help desk. A location where your customer receives help. This can be your website, phone number, or physical location. Increasingly, however, this refers to a web-based customer support center with self-service resources, such as frequently asked questions (FAQs). It can also include interactive resources, such as live chat or the option to submit a help ticket. For example, Zendesk.

Your Customer Experience Management Definitions

There you have it! Our top 32 customer experience management definitions. These should help anyone with grasping customer experience.

Of course, this is no way an exhaustive list. And, as promised, we’ll keep adding to it. What customer experience management terms do you think we missed?

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Brooke B. Sellas is the in-the-trenches Founder & CEO of @HelloBSquared, an award-winning social media, advertising, and customer care agency. She's also the Co-host of The Marketing Companion podcast with Mark Schaefer, where they discuss jaw-dropping marketing trends. Brooke's marketing mantra is “Think Conversation, Not Campaign” so be sure to give her a shout!
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