Launching a customer experience (CX) management programme is one of the most-discussed topics within marketing departments these days.

But are different companies talking about the same thing?

What does it even mean to launch a CX management programme? And how are marketers overcoming barriers?

To find out, Econsultancy invited dozens of client-side marketers in the Indonesian megacity Jakarta to discuss CX management at roundtable discussions.

About the roundtables

The roundtables covered three topics all related to CX and were moderated by subject matter experts from Econsultancy and our event sponsor IBM. 

Delegates brought experiences from many different companies and industries and openly discussed their success stories and challenges with the group.

Below is a summary of the main talking points taken from the discussions around Customer Experience Management.

CX management programmes explained

Though participants agreed that Customer Experience was well understood, how to plan an initiative to manage CX was not. (For those still in the dark about CX, read Econsultancy's overview here.)

It starts with strategy

CX management programmes start with a strategy to encourage an organization to improve the customer's interaction with the company as a whole instead of just focusing on the performance of individual touchpoints.

It differs from traditional marketing by putting the customer's opinion as the success factor, not necessarily clicks or conversions. 

The aim is to deliver 'moments of magic' which delight customers, according to one participant.

How do you launch a CX management programme?

Attendees agreed that there are three steps to implementing a CX management programme: 

  1. Map the customer journey. Note all of the touchpoints customers use before, during, and after a purchase.
  2. Implement central management of touchpoints. This is required to provide a consistent CX.
  3. Improve touchpoints. Marketers then improve the overall CX through improving the channels which make up the customer touchpoints. 

How do you measure success?

Instead of measuring conversion metrics of one individual channel, participants said that it is necessary to survey customers to get their opinions and to see how many have become advocates for the company.

Using Net Promoter Score (NPS), described in detail here, is a commonly-adopted metric for measuring CX success.

Barriers to launching a CX management programme

Participants noted that there are many barriers to overcome when launching a CX management programme.

Organisational barriers

First off, many departments need to collaborate for a CX programme to be successful. Sales, Marketing, IT, Retention and Customer Service need to be at the table when a CX management programme kicks off.

Also, because cooperation between so many departments is required, CX initiatives can be hard for marketers to manage, according to attendees.  

Many of these departments do not typically report into the CMO, so starting a CX management programme can require a lot of work.

And finally, even when everyone is at the table, conflicts of interest makes it hard to implement change.

Participants noted that changing the mindset in the organisation from channel-centric to customer-centric is a difficult task.

Overcoming organisational barriers

Thankfully the tables had participants who had overcome some of these issues.

One said that it is important to have someone in management take ownership of CX to push the project forward.  

Without having someone to remove roadblocks in other departments, CX management programmes are very difficult to iplements

Another said that a CX programme also needs someone in marketing to take ownership of the day-to-day work required to make the programme a success.  

Duties for this role include setting KPIs for the various departments, producing KPI reports, and managing the CRM (more on this below).

Finally, organisational barriers can be overcome, according to attendees, by having regular meetings with the divisions to give status updates. Without these, CX programmes are quickly forgotten, one participant noted.

Technical barriers

Attendees noted that CX management programmes require technology to be successful as well.

All agreed that a well-developed customer relationship management (CRM) tool was the most important system for a CX management programme.

This was a barrier for most participants as they were working with a CRM tool which was unable to report on the CX journey or conduct analysis on touchpoints.  

Additionally, everyone was having problems with recording, measuring, and reporting offline data.

Overcoming technical barriers

Once management are convinced that a CX management programme is a worthwhile effort, they need to allocate budget as well.

Attendees said that when asking for budget for the CRM system, marketers should also ensure that they have budget for the resource to manage the CRM as well.

In order to get that level of buy-in, argued one participant, the marketing department should first develop strong KPIs for each department involved in the programme.  

This will help both with budget and illustrate the positive impact the CX programme will have on each department.

And finally, with a CX management resource, the team should commit to delivering data, insights, and competitor analysis to demonstrate ongoing success. Reporting ROI will help too!

Market barriers

Participants then discussed some of the challenges that Indonesia and other developing markets face when launching a CX management programme.

Indonesia has transformed dramatically in the last five years. Internet users in the country have doubled since 2010 and the younger generation are much more 'information seeking' than older generations.

So, it is a challenge for companies to keep in step with both the 80% of the country which is non-digital and the 20% which is newly digital. 

Overcoming market barriers

One of the most important ways to deliver excellent CX to a market in flux is to acknowledge that offline interactions may still be more important than digital.

Then, when launching your programme be sure to include them, even though offline touchpoints are much more difficult to manage and measure.

Also, one marketer said that their company had very successfully educated offline customer about their digital channels, which improved their ability to provide high-quality customer experiences, measure the effect, and improve continuously.

The CX management future is bright

Overall, marketers agreed that there is a strong will to make Indonesia the South-East Asia role model for CX.

With its human capital, striving marketers, and growing digital society, attendees said that Indonesia has the potential to be a CX world leader without limits.

A word of thanks

Econsultancy would like to thank all of the client-side marketers who participated on the day and our sponsor for the event, IBM.

We would like to extend a special thanks to the table moderator for the Customer Experience Management: Frederik Neust, Digital Marketing Manager at Celebrity Fitness Group.

We appreciate all of the helpful discussion points participants provided on the day and we hope to see you all at our upcoming Econsultancy events!

Jeff Rajeck

Published 10 May, 2016 by Jeff Rajeck

Jeff Rajeck is the APAC Research Analyst for Econsultancy . You can follow him on Twitter or connect via LinkedIn.  

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