Experience Management: Understanding What it is and Why It Matters
When it comes to customer and stakeholder satisfaction, there is often a substantial divergence between how businesses think they do and how they actually do. Working to understand the entire experience from the perspective of stakeholders can help boost not only your brand but also your bottom line. The process of gaining this insight and acting on it is called experience management.
Specifically, customer experience management (CEM – sometimes also abbreviated CXM) pairs quantitative analysis with qualitative metrics to get a complete view of your customers and how they feel about every aspect of interacting with your business. This spans from how they initially perceive your brand to how satisfied they are with the buying process to whether or not they will buy from you again and why.
Differentiating CEM from Customer Relationship Management (CRM)
Sometimes it is easier to understand what something is by understanding what it is not. Customer experience management is often confused with CRM. The difference is all in the name. CEM is about understanding and managing the experience of customers at every step of the business. Meanwhile, CRM focuses on the direct interactions with the customer, which is only a portion of their total experience.
Put another way, according to Digitalist Magazine, “CRM focuses on the quality of interactions with customers throughout the entire customer journey [while CEM] focuses on optimizing business processes that are associated with customers.”
Experience Management is Broad
Experience management isn’t just about customers. It’s about harnessing meaningful insights from the experience of all the main players that interact with your business. This also includes shareholders, vendors, and employees. All of these groups play vital roles in your business, and it is imperative to study, analyze, and respond or react to their experiences in a way that is advantageous for the business.
Experience Management Solutions: How to Manage the Experience
Although at Joorney we do not recommend a specific experience management software solution, we do recommend utilizing these programs. You will need to research to see what is most applicable to your industry or business model as there are multiple options on the market. Some of the most popular are ZenDesk, Gainsight, and Qualtrics. As there are many components to experience management, these companies focus on different aspects and typically offer multiple services. This may give you an opportunity to start with one service and add on others as your budget allows.
Regardless of which solutions you select for your business, making the step towards actively understanding and managing your stakeholders’ experiences is a step in the right direction. Experience management is playing an increasingly large role in attracting, servicing, and retaining customers. You can’t harness the full potential of these relationships if you can’t truly measure and understand things from their side. After all, managing relationships is far easier and more effective if you start by managing experiences.
In the end, one of the main values of experience management is it allows companies to identify opportunities as well as predict and resolve issues before they occur. The only way to do this is to observe every interaction people have with your business and extract meaningful insights from it. Becoming aware of experience management and taking the initial steps to implement it will go a long way to making your business a lasting success.