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It’s well known that companies who put their customers at the heart of their business and treat their customers well, outperform those that don’t....

How many times have we all heard the statement “The customer is king” and actually believe it?

The truth is, when a business truly means what they say or do, the effect that it can have on you can leave you feeling just like a “king” - special, warm and engaged. More importantly, you are likely to tell your friends and family about your experience and you are more likely to purchase from the company again, becoming a loyal customer.

It’s well known that companies who put their customers at the heart of their business and treat their customers well, outperform those that don’t on almost every growth metric - they reduce costs, increase revenue, create a better customer experience and are on average 60% more profitable and more profitable than their competitors!.

So, what are they doing differently?

They put a great deal of focus on the customer journey.

Research by econsultancy has found that 50% of organisations have little to no understanding about their customer journey...

What is a customer journey?

A customer journey is the complete experience a customer has with an organisation. It encompasses all customer interactions across all channels, devices and touchpoints throughout every stage of the customer lifecycle – from awareness through to loyalty.

For the customer journey to be successful, it’s important that every aspect of the business is connected - if sales and marketing strategies become siloed and isolated from one another, this leads to a disconnect customer experience, unhappy customers and potential loss of sales

By mapping out the customer journey it enables you to identify where there are key gaps in communication so you can determine the optimum communication strategies and technology to use at each stage of the journey.

Customer Journey Lifecycle

You may think that the customer experience and customer journey are the same however, they are different - here’s how  

- The customer journey is what a customers does at each stage of the customer lifecycle

- The customer experience is how the customer feels throughout the entire customer lifecycle

For example

A customer searches for a new washing machine, they make the purchase online, it is then fitted and used the next day - this is all part of the customer journey.

Finding the website quickly, easy to use, being surprised with overnight shipping and feeling appreciated with a hand-written thank you note from the brand, is an example of customer experience.

86% of customers are willing to spend more on products for a great customer experience.

Today not only can businesses leverage technology for more efficient interaction with their customers to provide a seamless customer journey but also enhance with personalisation and customisation as well to result in a more engaging and pleasurable customer experience, one that they are excited to share with friends and family.

A virtual personal video assistant can be integrated into the customer journey to help greater human connection and interaction with your customer whilst they are on your ecommerce site to provide guidance and support through what may be a complex process. Personalised video assistants can provide a more human experience, with important information at points that are typically roadblocks to completion. At any point in a video communication, on-screen menu buttons can appear allowing viewers to choose the next part of a video they would like to go to, enabling a sense of exploration. This helps to lead customers along the path to purchase, where on-screen clickable CTA buttons encourage them to take action. This interaction delivers a wealth of data and insight that are invaluable to inform and optimise future marketing strategies. This technology can simplify and increase the online signup, purchase or joining process.

Personalised video chatbots on the other hand can offer advanced customer support featuring a real person. In the same way that customers would receive a text response, chatbot platforms can deliver a personalised video response. Where customers need support for issues, or have problems they need addressing, virtual video assistants (chatbots) can offer empathy, compassion and a personal connection that they could never receive through other messaging technology. This technology can help to reduce call centre traffic and allow a greater focus and support to be directed to those customers who have more complex enquiries.

It’s important to note that the customer journey cannot be drawn out from your own perspective or from a single department of the business – for the customer journey to be successful it has to be drawn out from your customers’ point of view involving all areas of the company to ensure its success and the customers remain king!

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