If you’re a marketer, you know that Customer Experience can make or break a company. In fact, “Customer Experience is the new brand.” Did you know that around 89% of companies now mostly compete based on Customer Experience? Surprising? Not if you’ve been paying attention.
We now live in an Experience Economy. As this article by Forbes reiterates, business success is “no longer about the product.” It’s personal and memorable experiences that help in acquiring and retaining clients and customers now.
We all know that the market is saturated with choices, with most companies offering similar products. How do you inspire customer loyalty in such a scenario?
This is where ‘Emotion in CX’ comes in. Basically, the idea is that ‘Emotion’ (notice, the capital E) is a crucial metric for brand success. Why? Because,
EMOTION DRIVES LOYALTY.
Moreover, we’d argue that HOW a company delivers its product is just as (maybe even more) important than WHAT it delivers.
ROLE OF EMOTION IN CUSTOMER EXPERIENCE
Contrary to how it sounds, ‘Emotion in CX’ is not an abstract concept.
We live in an Experience Economy. What that means is “from now on, leading-edge companies will find that the next competitive battleground lies in staging experiences”
Moreover, with the “always on” social media ecosystem, our expectations of what counts as a positive experience have evolved. So it’s necessary for brands to understand how to emotionally engage customers. And tailoring CX practices according to that is a sure shot way of staying ahead of the curve.
To put it differently, inspiring positive emotion in customers is how one can inspire Loyalty- the end goal of all CX practices.
WHY EMOTION IS CRITICAL FOR BRAND SUCCESS
Look at some of these stats that display the importance of ‘Emotion in Customer Experience’-
- How a brand makes people FEEL is 5 times more important than any other factor for buying decision.
In fact, customers mostly rate brands on the basis of personal experiences and feelings, not information. (Source- Forrester Research)
- Emotion in CX plays a major role in creating brand loyalty. CX strategies that focus on customer emotion yield higher Profits.
Consider this example. Deploying plans centred on emotions led to a 40 pc increase in new credit card account growth at a major bank, double-digit sales increases for a leading household cleaner, and a threefold jump in same-store sales at a nationwide apparel retailer. (Source- Harvard Business Review, The New Science of Customer Emotions)
- 88% customers are likely to spend more, and 92% customer are likely to stay loyal to a brand that develops a connection based on positive experience. (Source- Deloitte Digital)
- Customers with a positive emotional connection to a brand have a 306% higher lifetime value.
They also “stay with a brand for an average of 5.1 years vs. 3.4 years and recommend brands at a much higher rate (71% vs. 45%)”. (Source- Motista)
CUSTOMER EXPERIENCE MANAGEMENT
Consider this for a moment.
80% companies believe that they deliver “super experiences”. However, only 8% customers believe the same.
Let that sink in.
Clearly, there is a huge gap between a brand’s and its customers’ perception of how successful their customer support services are. Therefore, there is a lot more that brands can do to understand their customers better and forge an emotional connection.
As AG Lafley of Procter & Gamble once said,
I am a broken record when it comes to saying, ‘We have to focus on the consumer.’… I don’t think the answers are just in the numbers. You have to get out and look.
Using only operational (O) Data (like sales, revenue data) doesn’t really paint a complete picture of what is going on with the customers. It fails at capturing the ‘voice of customers,’ or their emotion. This is where X-Data or Experience Data comes in. O-Data can tell you what is going on, X-Data explains the why.
Emotion in Customer Experience have a major impact on future purchases, referrals, and Customer loyalty.
Which is why a comprehensive Customer Experience Management System that incorporates O-Data with X-Data is a goldmine for CX analytics.
Additionally, as per Forrester’s 2018 CX Index, “Elite Brands” provide their customers an average of 22 positive emotional experience for each negative one.
Ultimately, Emotion in customer experience is critical for brand success. But it can be a troublesome metric to track or explain.
We, here at Numr Research suggest that the easiest way to understand what is going on with your customers is to ask them. Simple, yet effective. Constantly monitoring customer experience and emotion improves customer satisfaction and brand loyalty. And, using a CEM software can make this process easier.
SENTIMENT ANALYSIS FOR MEASURING EMOTION IN CX
Now, we know that Emotion should be an integral part of a CX strategy for higher profit, customer satisfaction and lower Churn. But, how can one measure or understand Customer Emotion?
This is where Sentiment Analysis comes in. It has recently become a buzz phrase amongst marketers and rightly so. Sentiment analysis is a part of Text Analytics specially designed to understand customers’ Emotion and feelings.
How does Sentiment Analysis work?
Sentiment Analysis tracks customer Emotion by analysing ‘unstructured’ written feedback and comments. This means analysing the continuous stream of open-ended, free text either written by or about the customers.
Basically, it measures the quality of customer comments in binary terms of Yes (for positive) and No (for negative) using Machine Learning and Text Analytics. (More on that, here)
All in all, Sentiment Analysis helps brands track customer Emotion across different touchpoints.
Many major brands have reportedly planned to increase CX-related technology spending in 2019.
Clearly, they have realised the importance delighting customers for Brand success. And tracking Emotion in CX is crucial to inspire positive emotion in customers and build brand loyalty. In this crowded economy, Emotion is also key to brand differentiation. A CEM system with technology at its center is the only way to achieve these goals.