ICYMM: The Modern Customer Interaction

(ICYYM: In Case You Missed Me: linking to writing done elsewhere)

Another area where I spent a long time working in 2014 is customer interactions.  I mean, I am supposed to be a customer strategist… and customer interactions are the representation of what companies and customers do together… so why not? Right?

I talked to many organizations that are embarking on initiatives to redo their customer interactions.  Unfortunately, most of them are merely focused on documenting and extending what they are already doing (usually via <gulp> Journey Mapping and Customer Experience projects… sigh) instead of focusing on transforming them into something better.

I tried to imagine what a new customer interaction would look like and talked to vendors, organizations, and even consumers in that effort to get a better idea. I read most of what was written about it and then set out to summarize this information and came up with a new model for customer interactions.

Outcome-driven Customer Interactions.

Thanks to the sponsorship and support of my friends at InsideView, I published initial thoughts and models in their blog in a three-part series.  Here are links and quotes to  start the conversation.

Part 1: The Modern Customer Interaction – Introducing the concept and delineating the four outcomes: intent, satisfaction, knowledge, resolution, and engagement.  Quoting from the post:

All of these outcomes have the same thing in common: they use insights derived from the exchange of information at the moment of interaction to co-create value for both the customers and organizations. (…)

It is about delivering complete interactions at each step that co-create value to both sides resulting in long-term engagement.

Part 2: Outcome-driven Customer Interactions – Introducing a visual representation of this model – one that extends the work I’ve done previously with customer engagement.  Quoting from the post:

These outcomes ensure that even if there is no final resolution (or engagement over the long run) significant value is created at each stage that can then be used to move to the next step – or used in the future to generate better interactions.

Part 3: Customer-centric Outcomes – Finalizing the series by giving more details on the outcomes introduced and how organizations can start planning for them.  Quoting from the post:

These outcomes, in turn, will force organizations to change the way they work, the processes they utilize, the way they leverage their systems, but more importantly how they manage the information triumvirate (data, content, and knowledge) to seek engagement over the last run with customers.

Does this resonate?  Are you planning your interactions with customers with these goals in mind? Should you? Want to?

Leave me a brief note, let me know your thoughts…would love to talk and expand this model.

Disclaimer: InsideView is a client and they have generously sponsored this research. This research was conducted as part of my sponsored research model, where kind and generous clients pay me to do research I needed to do anyways and in exchange they get to use the content and their name associated with it. If you know me, and my work, you know this research is continuation of work I’ve done in the past few years – and that no one, even sponsors, get a saying in editorial control or content. In other words, they kindly sponsored me to write what I find out there.