8 Things to Consider for a Successful Multi-Touchpoint Customer Experience
John Mancini

By: John Mancini on May 12th, 2010

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8 Things to Consider for a Successful Multi-Touchpoint Customer Experience

Enterprise 2.0  |  Social Media  |  Intelligent Information Management (IIM)

Consumers use several sources of information before making purchase decisions – they may seek independent opinions, speak to customer service agents, or examine goods physically. And they are accessing information via myriad touch points, including mobile devices, social networks or company websites. Companies recognize this, but consumers consistently rate satisfaction levels for cross-channel experiences as poor, so there is a disconnect.

It is hard enough to ensure that a website delivers an excellent user experience. When you factor in the vast number of web-enabled mobile devices, companies face a huge challenge in creating a consistent and personalized experience for every user. Social media adds additional touch points and complexity.

Organizations that succeed in integrating their communications across all channels can then customize their approach to each specific user, creating the most powerful form of personalization. This ensures that the customer feels valued, helps to identify the best cross and up-selling opportunities, and delivers truly engaging customer experience.

Below are eight key strategies for delivering excellent multi-touchpoint experiences to engage consumers, build customer loyalty, and ultimately drive greater revenue and profitability.

  1. Make sure your website is intuitive on all mobile devices.

    Consumers are increasingly accessing the Web from mobile devices. By 2014, 80 percent of all mobile devices will be 3G enabled – up from 40 percent in 2009. With the number and type of mobile devices proliferating, you must provide a solution optimized for all devices.

    Optimization is not simply a matter of resizing the screen; you should think about the task that users want to perform across different channels and devices. For example, smartphone users are frequently looking for answers to specific questions – they may want to find a particular news item or to locate the nearest retail outlet. Your goal is to guide them to the answers quickly and intuitively. By contrast, when people visit your website on a laptop, they expect a more immersive experience, which allows them to browse as well as search. The key is to be able to recognize customers and prospects as individuals and customize your content for them, whatever channel, device, or system they choose.

  2. Address the customer’s context –not just the channel or device they’re using.

    When delivering information across different channels and devices, consider the information that they are seeking to create a personalized experience that addresses the user’s context. By context, I mean the interaction between the user, the device, the environment, and the content itself- this could include the season of the year, time of day, physical location, type of mobile device and, of course, the user’s interests and profile. Understanding how these factors interact enables a company to deliver relevant content and target offers with precision.

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  3. Start a conversation- invite opinions, ratings, and reviews.

    One of the most powerful ways of engaging people is by opening up your website to their reviews, ratings, and comments – enabling them to engage in discussion with you and with each other.

    This not only demonstrates your commitment to improving the customer experience but also creates a forum for passionate brand advocates to persuade others to purchase your products and services. In addition, you can respond to issues through blogs and comments, heading off problems by addressing them early.

    Ratings, comments, discussion boards, and forums can provide invaluable feedback on your current products and services and insights into what is on the minds of your users. You can float ideas and invite users to test products– in effect, running a 24x7 market research campaign, giving you greater assurance that new products and services will find a ready market at launch.

  4. Unleash the power of self-help!

    Offering intuitive Web self-help can greatly reduce the burden of supporting your customers through contact centers, decreasing costs, and increasing customer satisfaction. It must not only be intuitive but also appropriate to each channel and device. The key is understanding the potential problems that users encounter and providing the right help at the right moment.

    There are many users who relish the opportunity to help others, so providing a forum that allows them to do so unleashes their potential, builds a powerful database of solutions, and takes the pressure off your own contact center agents.

    If you think of the Web purely as a way of eliminating calls to your contact center, however, you run the risk of frustrating your customers. So don’t hide your contact center number away – let people approach you in the way that they feel comfortable. You can offer alternatives to the phone – such as live Web chat. Most important is to ensure a smooth handover between channels so that customers don’t have to repeat information – this reduces their frustration and the time your agents need to serve them.

  5. Always recognize your customer.

    Many companies take a silo approach to channels – each channel is managed by a separate department. As a result, loyal customers may be greeted as strangers if they approach through a new channel.

    An integrated solution provides a total picture of a customer’s interests, preferences, and buying history across all channels. It ensures that you treat people like valued customers – so, for example, they never have to enter their details twice – and it helps you to identify the most effective cross- and up-selling opportunities.

  6. Use social media if it’s relevant to your customers.

    In 2009, membership of social networking sites rose by 46 percent. There is no doubt that social networks can bring you closer to your customers, and offer candid insights into their views and desires that can inform your decision making and drive your business forward. Using analytics feedback, social networks can automatically inform your Web presence while your content is drawn into the conversation on social networks. Traffic can be driven to your website, user comments can inform your contact center agents, ratings, and reviews can be reflected on your website. You can increase the size and loyalty of your audience and maximize your return on engagement.

    But two notes of caution. First, only engage in social networks if they are relevant to your audience – there is no point in developing a Facebook presence if your potential customers will never visit it. Second, be honest and open. You should assume that any scheme designed to generate an artificial ‘groundswell’ will be exposed.

  7. Embrace opportunities to create innovative marketing campaigns.

    Mix different channels together to create innovative marketing campaigns that ignite the excitement of your target audience. Draw on a blend of online, mobile, and real experiences to differentiate your company, strengthen its brand persona, and drive new revenues.

    Today’s proliferation of channels, devices, and social networks massively increases the number of ways to approach customers. Creative marketers can seize the opportunity to differentiate products and services through campaigns that intrigue, excite, delight, and ultimately sell.

  8. Show that you are REALLY listening.

    There is no point in creating these communication channels and taking the time to make them as engaging and personalized as possible if you are not actually listening to what your customers are saying. The best way to get that return on engagement is by taking the insights and feedback you’ve gotten from your audiences and putting it into action, making some real changes to your business. Then, take it a step further, and tell them about it! Empowering your customers can go a long way in creating brand loyalty and advocacy.


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About John Mancini

John Mancini is the President of Content Results, LLC and the Past President of AIIM. He is a well-known author, speaker, and advisor on information management, digital transformation and intelligent automation. John is a frequent keynote speaker and author of more than 30 eBooks on a variety of topics. He can be found on Twitter, LinkedIn and Facebook as jmancini77. Recent keynote topics include: The Stairway to Digital Transformation Navigating Disruptive Waters — 4 Things You Need to Know to Build Your Digital Transformation Strategy Getting Ahead of the Digital Transformation Curve Viewing Information Management Through a New Lens Digital Disruption: 6 Strategies to Avoid Being “Blockbustered” Specialties: Keynote speaker and writer on AI, RPA, intelligent Information Management, Intelligent Automation and Digital Transformation. Consensus-building with Boards to create strategic focus, action, and accountability. Extensive public speaking and public relations work Conversant and experienced in major technology issues and trends. Expert on inbound and content marketing, particularly in an association environment and on the Hubspot platform. John is a Phi Beta Kappa graduate of the College of William and Mary, and holds an M.A. in Public Policy from the Woodrow Wilson School at Princeton University.