Your journey as a customer starts with you. 

And your journey as a company starts with your customers. Maybe it’s about where the rubber meets the road. Or maybe it’s about putting yourself in your customers’ shoes. Or maybe it’s about the evolution of CRM applications. Or all of the above!

Customer Journey Map Experience Engagement CRM

 

I like the idea of journeys and evolving concepts, which is nowhere more evident than in the realm of Customer Relationship Management (CRM). The predecessors of CRM were contact management (on the sales side), database marketing (on the marketing side), and the help desk (on the customer care side), which were narrow tactics as opposed to broad strategies. And the predecessor of all of those things was the omnipresent Rolodex. Remember those days? We’ve come a long way since then! 

The shift we’re seeing today is from companies managing customers to customers taking more control. Perhaps it’s not quite a seismic shift, but we may be approaching that. Today’s customers generally want more control over their destinies. That’s why self-service applications are becoming more prevalent in CRM technologies. 

Understand Your Customer Journey Map

When you walk a day in your customer’s shoes you develop empathy and understanding. You become a participant in your customer’s journey.  Here are a few ways to do that.

  • Ride Along: Ever heard of a “ride-along?” It’s what Harley-Davidson does with their customers. They literally ride along with their customers to experience their product with them. The approach has led to many innovations that include better motorcycles, but also, other customer experiences that go far beyond the bike.

  • Research and Advisory Boards: There are many traditional approaches to learning more about your customers too. Form an advisory panel. Do survey research. Conduct won/lost account interviews.

  • Journey Maps: When you’ve walked a mile in your customer’s shoes, put together customer journey maps. Find the highs and lows of their experience, and form a strategy to create higher-highs, and eliminate the lows. From there, re-design your processes to align with a better vision of the customer journey.

  • Integrated Customer-First Technology: And, yes, you need a modern CRM (or, perhaps CES – Customer Engagement System).  And it needs to integrate across sales, marketing, service and other customer-facing channels so that the entire team can service the customer while exchanging information in real time.

Time to Transform from Customer Relationship Management to Customer Engagement

When you’re managing customers, you’re trying to be in control – that’s the more comfortable position for most legacy business leaders.  But when you’re engaging customers, you recognize that control can be shared. By giving up some control you’re able to deliver experiences that will result in accelerating new customer generation and longer-lasting, more mutually-beneficial relationships with your customers.

C5 Insight thrives on creating more engaging customer experiences.  Contact us today to plan ride alongs, create an advisory board, build journey maps, or select and implement a CRM solution. Give us a ring at 704-895-2500 or use our contact form to reach out.