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The Modern Customer Podcast

Go behind the scenes with customer experience leader Blake Morgan to explore the secrets of the world’s most customer-centric companies. Blake is one of the world’s top keynote speakers, authority on customer experience and the bestselling author of “The Customer Of The Future” The Modern Customer reaches thousands of people each week conveying a message of how we make people feel - in business and in life - matters. Her weekly show explores how businesses can make customers’ lives easier and better, featuring experts that provide simple, tangible advice you can immediately apply at your own organization. Today’s customers have the luxury of choice. The answer is simple; choose customer experience and customers will choose you. Learn how to put a stake in the ground on customer experience by tuning into The Modern Customer Podcast each week with Blake Morgan.
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Now displaying: November, 2021
Nov 30, 2021

Net Promoter Score, or NPS, is one of the most widely used customer experience metrics across all industries. But according to its creator, Fred Reichheld, countless companies are doing it wrong and end up abusing the system. 

The Net Promoter System involves asking a simple question to customers, typically after an interaction with a brand—how likely are you to recommend the brand or company to family and friends? 

Best-selling author Reichheld says the core principle of NPS is love and the idea that you should treat others the way you would want a loved one to be treated. Reichheld created the Net Promoter System before cellphones were widely used, and the system has grown with new digital technologies. Even as the digital world grows, the core of NPS is timeless and is just as relevant today as ever. 

The issue with using NPS in our modern world, Reichheld says, is that too many companies are sloppy about how they ask the question, including asking it at inopportune times, asking it too frequently or using it as a relationship question to grade employees. Many companies reach out to customers after a contact center interaction and ask the question with a strong implication that the service rep will get in trouble if they don’t receive a perfect score. 

Instead of a way to discipline or grade employees, NPS is about tracking how well customers are treated and how loved they feel by the company.  

Successfully using NPS starts with a company culture of loving and serving customers. Leaders set the example as they inspire their employees to make customers’ lives easier and better. Reichheld says the customer-first philosophy has to be at the center of every conversation and decision of leaders. When leaders set the example of running their companies as a way to show their love for customers, it comes through in how employees interact with and serve customers and leads to higher Net Promoter Scores.  

With that mindset, companies can focus on asking the NPS question at the best times instead of throwing survey requests out left and right to get a mountain of abstract information. It can also lead to NPS innovation and reaching customers in convenient ways. 

NPS is a powerful tool for all companies, but it has to be rooted in the right mindset: love and service. As leaders and employees aim to love their customers and treat them how they would friends and family, the NPS process is improved and scores will continue to rise.

*This episode is sponsored by Quiq.

Quiq is a leading conversational AI platform that drives two-way conversations to deliver a better experience for people and brands. Quiq enables enterprises to connect and engage in two-way conversations with their customers across varied messaging channels — including Facebook Messenger — in more than 170 languages. Quiq is the future of business-to-consumer messaging; it’s the wingman every brand and CX’er needs.

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Blake Morgan is a customer experience futurist, keynote speaker, and author of the bestselling book The Customer Of The Future. For regular updates on customer experience, sign up for her weekly newsletter here.  Join the new Customer Experience Community here.

 

Nov 23, 2021

Every day, we text to communicate and quickly share news and questions with our family and friends. 

Why can’t contacting a brand be that simple? 

That’s the question that caused Mike Myer to create the digital CX company Quiq. As CEO, Myer has a unique view of the future of conversational AI and its power to transform customer experience.

Conversational AI allows customers to chat with human agents or bots through text on a variety of channels and quickly and conveniently get the information they need.  

One channel Quiq’s customers have seen strong success is through Facebook Messenger. Most customers are already using the platform, which makes it convenient for them to also use it to connect with brands. Through Messenger, customers and agents or bots can send images, create a menu of choices and even provide a carousel of options for quick replies. Myer says Messenger provides rich interactions that can greatly improve a customer’s experience with a brand. It’s a huge improvement over calling a contact center on the phone, which has dominated the industry for decades. 

Conversational AI can be tailored to meet the needs of nearly any type of customer and is helpful with reducing churn, increasing return on ad spend and greatly increasing efficiency. Instead of contact center agents talking to customers individually on the phone, companies can do twice the customer volume with only 25% more agents. Quiq customers have also seen a 40x return on ad spend through Facebook Messenger. In most cases, adopting conversational AI actually leads to a decrease in budget, but it requires the courage to reallocate funds away from traditional contact centers to new technology and bots.

Myer says conversational AI is still on the left side of the bell curve of adoption. But as more companies innovate with conversational AI through Messenger and texting and see the financial and service improvements, the practice will continue to grow. 

Conversational AI is growing, and this is just the beginning. Myer predicts that in three to five years, the majority of customer interactions with large brands won’t be over the phone but will instead be through texting. Brands that take the leap of faith and get on the conversational AI train now are creating the next generation of customer engagement and shaping the future of CX.

*This episode is sponsored by Quiq.

Quiq is a leading conversational AI platform that drives two-way conversations to deliver a better experience for people and brands. Quiq enables enterprises to connect and engage in two-way conversations with their customers across varied messaging channels — including Facebook Messenger — in more than 170 languages. Quiq is the future of business-to-consumer messaging; it’s the wingman every brand and CX’er needs.

_______________

Blake Morgan is a customer experience futurist, keynote speaker, and author of the bestselling book The Customer Of The Future. For regular updates on customer experience, sign up for her weekly newsletter here.  Join the new Customer Experience Community here.

Nov 16, 2021

Customer expectations have changed over the past 18 months of a pandemic, leaving brands with the challenge of pivoting and adapting not only to a new way of living and working but also to a new way of interacting with and serving customers. 

Scott Finlow, CMO of PepsiCo Foodservice, has noticed two major trends during the pandemic. First is that people are looking forward to re-entering the world and having meaningful connections. As they do so, they want to try new products and have new experiences. Second, people are looking for more purpose in their lives and in their brand choices. That manifests in a variety of ways, including being more aware of the impact of their decisions on the environment and their health and wellbeing. 

But Finlow says understanding and recognizing those changes is only the first step. Companies need to understand where customer needs are heading so they can focus on re-inventing a better normal. It’s not about going back to how things were but instead moving forward and creating a better future. 

Perhaps nowhere is that more important than in the B2B world, where many companies are adjusting to new ways of doing business. Throughout the pandemic, PepsiCo has focused on forming partnerships to help support its restaurant customers as they pivot. The company is also investing heavily in digital and building out services to help its customers along their own digital journeys. 

As customer expectations change, innovation is crucial. B2B companies need to find new ways to meet customer needs and break out of how things have been done in the past. With an increased focus on health and safety, PepsiCo set out to create contactless fountain drink equipment. Finlow says it required the work of multiple departments to deliver on the new hygiene standard. But it doesn’t stop there—the company is also piloting a drink machine in Europe that allows customers to gesture and pour the drink of their choice. Continual innovation provides B2B customers with the tools they need to best serve their customers.  

Customer experience has always required continual change and evolution, but especially in a post-COVID world. B2B companies that stay in touch with their customers to understand their new needs and expectations, find ways to support their journey and continually innovate will lead the way towards the future.   

 

*This episode is sponsored by Quiq.

Quiq is a leading conversational AI platform that drives two-way conversations to deliver a better experience for people and brands. Quiq enables enterprises to connect and engage in two-way conversations with their customers across varied messaging channels — including Facebook Messenger — in more than 170 languages. Quiq is the future of business-to-consumer messaging; it’s the wingman every brand and CX’er needs.

_______________

Blake Morgan is a customer experience futurist, keynote speaker, and author of the bestselling book The Customer Of The Future. For regular updates on customer experience, sign up for her weekly newsletter here.  Join the new Customer Experience Community here.

Nov 9, 2021

The last nearly two years have been dominated by short-term thinking. With the pandemic and world changing so rapidly, most companies had to abandon long-term plans to focus on what’s right ahead of them. In our personal lives, most of us are more focused on getting through the day than working towards our long-term plans. 

Short-term thinking isn’t bad, but according to Dorie Clark, author of The Long Game, we can’t live our whole lives in emergency mode. When individuals and companies are too focused on short-term thinking, we miss the chance to proactively direct our strategy and outcomes. Long-term thinking helps us take back control and get us where we want to go. 

As the pandemic slowly subsides in many places, long-term thinking is making a comeback. But the adjustment from focusing only on the here and now to the bigger picture can be jarring. 

Clark suggests three steps to becoming a long-term thinker:

  1. Create white space. You have to have mental space to be able to think long term. It is almost impossible to engage in strategic thinking if you are mentally maxed out or overwhelmed.
  2. Focus on the right things. Get clear about what your priorities should be. Each person needs to focus on the right things for themselves.
  3. Keep the faith. Nearly every long-term goal faces setbacks and challenges along the way. It’s easy to get frustrated and give up, but Clark says it’s crucial to understand where you are in the process and persevere. 

Thinking long term can get us out of the rut of monotony and searching for daily balance to instead see things from a different perspective. Clark calls it thinking in waves or the idea that we don’t need to have balance every day or every week as long as we have balance eventually. There are seasons and phases to life, and long-term thinking allows us to recognize those phases and shift so that we continually improve and work towards our goals. 

The pandemic has changed how we think. But even as we adjust to new ways of doing things, the ability to embrace long-term thinking and proactively take control of our lives and careers can lead to tremendous growth.

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Blake Morgan is a customer experience futurist, keynote speaker, and author of the bestselling book The Customer Of The Future. For regular updates on customer experience, sign up for her weekly newsletter here.  Join the new Customer Experience Community here.

Nov 2, 2021

To say the real estate market in 2021 is a wild ride would be an understatement. 

Anyone who has looked at buying or selling a home recently can understand the roller coaster of emotions in this crazy climate. 

But the ups and downs of real estate, especially in the current fast-moving state, require a special focus on relationships and customer experience. 

According to Deanna Haas, SVP of customer experience at SOLD.com, one of the biggest challenges for consumers navigating the real estate world is the abundance of options. Aside from the traditional ways of buying and selling homes, numerous alternatives are popping up that can also be great options. The challenge for people is to discover what option best meets their needs. 

Haas says that above anything else, modern real estate customers are looking for education and an unbiased perspective. Real estate is emotional. And while the numbers are important, Haas says consumers need more than just the data—there must also be a human side to the transaction. 

No matter how people choose to buy or sell their home, they want someone who is as invested in the experience as they are. With properties moving so quickly, it can be easy for sales to become routine for agents and companies. But each sale is unique for its buyers and sellers, who want their real estate professionals to take time to help them understand their options and be invested in the success of the transaction. Consumers want their feelings about real estate—both their fears and excitement—to be heard and acknowledged. 

Personalization is crucial in customer experiences across all industries, and real estate is no different. Consumers want to have a personalized experience, especially as they make such a large and important purchase.  

Ultimately, Haas says consumers are looking for individual and memorable real estate experiences where they are valued and understood. Real estate is emotional and should be treated as more than black and white. 

And the need to deliver a strong experience will only increase--as the real estate industry continues to shift and evolve, understanding modern customers will become even more important.

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Blake Morgan is a customer experience futurist, keynote speaker, and author of the bestselling book The Customer Of The Future. For regular updates on customer experience, sign up for her weekly newsletter here.  Join the waitlist now for the new Customer Experience Community here.

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