5 July 2013

Chasing innovation in customer experience

Recent research published by Forrester in the Harvard Business Review has uncovered a disconnect in how customer experience professionals are aiming to deliver innovation. Despite their hard work, misguided approaches too often fail to deliver the experiences customers truly value.

The first impression of a survey carried out by the research consultancy on 100 customer experience professionals is a good one; significant numbers of respondents report investments of time, money and staff into providing innovative customer experiences.

And the investments are being put into practice; nearly three-quarters of those surveyed report that they will launch these customer experience innovations in the coming year, and many already claim they have.

So where’s the issue? According to report author Kerry Bodine, these innovations aren’t making an impact where they’re needed most: At the intersection of┬áconsumer needs, business model, and brand. Forrester’s annual Customer Experience Index still only counts the percentage of companies delivering outstanding customer experiences – as ranked by their own customers – in single-digit numbers.

Furthermore, this innovation is too often based on mimicry of competitors and reliance on technology, rather than truly fresh thinking.

The solution is three-fold, according to Bodine, and “requires a structured approach that goes beyond traditional find-and-fix methods and helps firms identify and create experiences that really matter”: Reframe innovation opportunities, ground innovations in the business model, and infuse innovations with the brand.

Source: “New Research: You’re Doing Customer Experience Innovation Wrong” (Forrester via Harvard Business Review Blog Network)

Business processes (14), Customer experience (78), Innovation (6)

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