You Can’t Hack It: Customer Experience

Hacking A Solution

Many people know of MacGyver, the television show that ran from the mid-1980s until the early 1990s. MacGyver was great at solving problems by using everyday materials. While these items were not purpose-built for his use, they worked in a pinch. Tied up by bad guys, MacGyver would look around the room, eye the duct tape and some paper clips, and build a rudimentary device to save the day.

While not an ideal solution, MacGyver jerry-rigged or hacked a solution out of something that sufficed when he was in a bind. Can you imagine living every day like that? Can you imagine running your business that way? Neither can we.

Ingenuity Gone Awry

Every day, I speak with existing QuestionPro clients who are taking a MacGyver approach by hacking their own customer experience solution with standard survey software. They tell me how much the value their customers and how important customer experience is to their business, but they are using inefficient processes and tools to get the job done. Now, I admire their drive and ingenuity. These intrepid folks are fighting the good fight, but the efficiency and results suffer. Ultimately, the customer experience suffers.

At the other end of the spectrum are very expensive, custom-built software solutions. These solutions are typically heavy-laden with consulting expenses and human efforts that fill in the gaps where smart software does not exist. Beyond this, they encourage you to divorce yourself from really understanding your customers, instead relying on your expensive consulting partner to tell you who your customers are and how you must serve them. There has to be a better way.

A Better Way

Basic surveys were never meant to solve for all of your ambitions. Own your customer experience with intelligent, purpose-built software that puts you in charge. Here are some tips to get you started:

Ongoing feedback. If you only want to gauge your customer experience at a specific point in time, then run a one-time survey. If you want to keep your fingers on the pulse of the customer experience, then implement an ongoing feedback program.

Customer Journey. Your customers don’t experience your business at a single point, but across many interactions like email, your website, your app, your store, restaurant, or airplane. It’s easy and cost-effective to measure the customer experience across in all of these places, so implement a holistic approach.

Automate. I regularly hear about clients who are downloading, uploading and crunching numbers to understand and manage their customer experience. Every bit of this can be automated with smart, affordable software to increase efficiency, reduce errors, and make smart decisions faster.

As much as we love MacGyver, we don’t recommend that anyone hacks together a customer experience solution. The risk is too high and your business, and your customers, have so much to gain by using a purpose-built customer experience solution.

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