The Beginner’s Guide to Experience Management

Can your business predict problems before they occur? Are you optimizing your website to meet customer demands, streamline information, and deliver 5 Star Customer Experiences? If so, then you’ve probably dabbled in experience management. If not, then you’ve come to the right place. 

Defining experience management 

Successful companies don’t react to problems as they happen, but rather use experience management to resolve problems before they play out. How does this work? Let’s start by defining experience management. XM is the process of closely monitoring every interaction a consumer has with a company as a means of finding opportunities for improvement.  

Why experience management matters 

As more and more business is conducted through digital storefronts, it should be the goal of any company to provide the best experience possible. Unfortunately, most aren’t. According to Qualtrics 80% of CEOs believe they deliver a superior experience, but just 8% of their customers agree with them. That’s a pretty significant disparity. Customer experience is about more than knowing where and what your customers buy. It’s about being able to craft an experience so personal that it meets all your customers’ needs, thus driving long-lasting loyalty.  

How does it work? 

Experience management is data driven. This data can be gathered in a variety of ways, including, but not limited to: 

  • Customer relationship management tools  
  • Analyzing bounce rates, exit rates, and conversion rates on your website  
  • Web-based, in-person or phone surveys 
  • Moderated user forums and blogs 
  • Focus groups 
  • Direct contact in person or by phone  
  • Analysis of specific customers or unique problems 

Have you ever been asked to complete a survey after getting off the phone or customer service? If so, then you’ve interacted with a brand actively seeking to improve their experience management. 

Customer service vs. customer experience management 

Customer service and customer experience management are related, but they’re not one in the same. Customer service is assisting a customer with a product or service your business provided. Customer experience runs deeper. It involves all the ways a business interacts with a customer, and then managing data pulled from these interactions to create better experience in the future. Customer service focuses on one interaction, while customer experience management focuses on every interaction. 

What makes for a good customer experience?  

Delivering quality customer experiences is important. It should be ingrained in the thought process of everything you do. The Five-Star Experience Management Maturity Model is a great way to measure your company’s maturity in the digital experience management space. Your digital experience should be: 

  1. Intentional. Digital experiences must be created with a purpose. What is the action you want your customers to take with each experience you create? 
  1. Consistent. A quality digital experience requires a standard brand persona that transcends individual touchpoints. When we say brand persona, we are referring to how people perceive your brand every time they interact with it. Your brand persona should be, among other things, friendly and helpful. 
  1. Measurable. Your customers’ interactions with your experiences must be quantifiable. That can be the amount of revenue an experience generated, or the number of web visits. 
  1. Valuable. Every digital experience you invest in must drive revenue or other outcomes important to your business (e.g., downloads or web traffic). Without value, the investments you make in your experiences aren’t worth it. 
  1. Personal. You must have an understanding of your audience that’s deep enough to deliver tailored experiences. Looking to increase your website personalization? Check out the 2020 Personalization Guide here

How to get started 

One of the biggest shifts in recent years has been consumer demand for personalized experiences. In fact, it is so important that according to a recent Avionos study, 88% of buyers said they’d deflect from a supplier whose digital channel couldn’t keep up with their needs. A great way to combat this shift is through implementing experience management. A good first step is to clearly dictate what you want your customer to experience when they interact with your business. From there, you can curate low-lift surveys to start monitoring how the vision you have for your company aligns with customer perception. If your business is looking for bigger results, consider partnering with a consultancy, like Avionos, to strategize a customer experience game plan.  

Connect With Me

Mary Schneeberger

Mary Schneeberger leads the Marketing Experience practice at Avionos. She has extensive experience collaborating with clients and is qualified across several digital channels and industries. Her recent projects include work on digital governance strategy, marketing automation strategy, and digital transformation. She’s been featured in several articles about integrated marketing, most recently in Martech Zone. Connect with Mary on LinkedIn.
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