To thrive in today’s hyper-competitive and hyper-connected customer-focused world, you must not only deliver a positive Customer Experience every time you interact with a customer, but also create, deliver and refresh value, as perceived by customers, on a continuous basis.
The Kano Model (theory of product development and customer satisfaction developed back in the 80’s) classifies customer requirements into categories, and can be used in experience management to help us understand how customers perceive the value they get.
- Must-be or the unspoken customer requirements are so obvious that the customer doesn’t expect to have to spell them out. They’re the absolute minimum, and the customer won’t even notice if you meet them. But if you don’t, it will be so crucial that you should be prepared to lose a customer.
- One-dimensional requirements are related to product features or elements of service delivery. The more of those you meet, the better the Customer Experience, and the highest the customer will think of you. If you fail to deliver them the customer will certainly be disappointed and open up to competition.
- Delighter requirements are the ones that surprise the customer and will delight or even wow, having an extremely positive impact on the Customer Experience, leading to word-of-mouth and advocacy. But no harm is done if these aren’t there, as they are not expected anyway.
The interesting thing is that with time Delighter requirements become One-Dimensional, and One-Dimensional requirements become Must-be. And that is one of the reasons you need to continuously update your understanding of the customer, and their perception of value.
There is only a limited number of ways to increase your knowledge of the customer. Look into solicited and unsolicited feedback – two good examples of that are the voice-of-the-customer (VoC) from surveys, or the interaction and buying information from CRM systems.
But the challenge is: how quickly and effectively can you collect, gather, aggregate or analyse data, and find actionable insights that will allow you to enhance an individual’s Customer Experience with your company and its products or services?
You will definitely need to assemble a cross-functional team. As OVUM says “the twin engines of growth – Customer Experience and continuous innovation – are not departmental challenges, as they have implications for the entire enterprise, its ecosystem of partners and suppliers”.
And you will undoubtedly need technology to enable and support you. An agile technology platform, focused on experience management, which allows you to collect valuable information and data at every customer journey stage, and from every touch-point or channel.
A technology platform that allows you to incorporate customer knowledge and feedback into every decision, by offering powerful capabilities to analyse, prioritise and predict based on statistical, text or sentiment analysis. As well as allow tracking of progress and immediate action.
So, if you are trying to keep up with your customer’s perceived value make sure you surround yourself with the right people, gear yourself up with the right tools, and put in place a continuous improvement plan, that will certainly have a start date but no end date.