June 6, 2019
Customer experience mistakes
Some businesses like to think they’re customer-centric — and let’s face it, you probably think yours is too. In reality, a lot of those businesses don’t walk the talk. In many cases, these businesses have their hearts in the right place; but all too often, they make mistakes that prevent them from being truly customer-centric.
In this article, we outline 3 common mistakes and provide practical solutions to rectify these mistakes. Our aim here is to help businesses become more customer-focused — and more successful as a result.
Mistake 1: You assume all your customers are the same
As marketers, we’ve been trained to think of our customers as kings and to put them at the heart of everything we do. But all too often, many businesses subsequently treat their customers as a single, homogenous segment. And as a result, these businesses develop metrics based on the overall satisfaction of this one group.
Here’s the thing: not all customers are the same. There are many ways in which your customers will differ; demographic and psychographic variables are the most apparent variables, but engagement also has a role to play. Some customers will be fiercely loyal to your brand, while others will remain somewhat indifferent.
Our tip: Accept the fact that some customers will be more valuable than others
Rather than invest all our resources trying to turn the indifferent customers into advocates for your brand, it’s better to accept that there’s a hierarchy of customers — and that some will always be more valuable to your business than others. From there, there are 2 things you can do:
- Get better at identifying your most valuable customers: today, we are fortunate to be able to obtain so much data about our customers. If you’re an Autopilot customer, for instance, you have easy access to insights on all your journeys and emails on the Smart Dashboard. With all this data at your fingertips, it’s easier to work out which customers are the most valuable to your business.
- Personalize your interactions with them: Take advantage of all this data by customizing your interactions with them. For example, a customer who bought something from you 6 months ago and hasn’t opened any of your emails since then shouldn’t get the same attention as someone who hits the “buy now” button every month and opens all your emails.
Another way you can identify your most valuable customers is to send them a Delighted NPS survey to find out just how happy they are with your product. Use the Autopilot customer journey template below to get started. Based on your customer responses, you can then create segment audiences for future use or add the customers to an appropriate HubSpot CRM deal stage in your sales pipeline.
Your customers aren’t all the same, so your approach to communicating with them should reflect that.
Mistake 2: Your business has silos
Silos are a common problem in businesses that claim they are customer-centric. The marketing team may have one way of measuring customer value, while the sales team may have a completely different method. In many cases, other teams such as finance or HR won’t even have access to any of this information. As a result, critical decisions are often made in vacuums.
Our tip: Ensure your business works towards a common goal
As your customers move through the marketing funnel, they are very likely to have more touchpoints with different parts of your business. A siloed business structure will only make things inconsistent and frustrating, not just for your business but also for the customers. We suggest defining what customer-centricity means to the business before identifying opportunities to apply it to every team, ensuring that everyone is on the same page.
Mistake 3: Your KPIs only focus on the bottom line
We get it. It’s easy to measure a company’s success based on numbers. After all, if a business is selling a lot of stuff and producing them as cheaply as possible, they’re a roaring success, right?
Cost matters a lot — there’s no doubt about that. But the bottom line doesn’t tell the whole story. And today, we can measure success in so many different ways, yet many businesses still focus on KPIs that only reflect money.
Our tip: Make customer equity a core KPI
There’s definitely nothing wrong with focusing on volume and cost, but too many businesses spend too much time focusing on those metrics — all while ignoring other ones such as customer loyalty. Let’s pretend you’re a marketer for a SaaS company. Your competitors may have launched an epic product that millions of one-time customers may have subscribed to once… but never bothered to renew for a second year. Meanwhile, your company may have released a remarkable product that fewer people signed up for — but these people were so happy with what they paid for that they went on to renew their subscription every year. This goes to show that getting as many of the right customers engaged with the right product is far more important that one year’s worth of financials.