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Know Which Customer Touchpoints Drive Customer Satisfaction

Published October 23, 2009

Is your organization trying to improve the experience for all customers at all touchpoints? 

Customers-Touchpoints_MCXThough this is going to sound like a self-evident truth, the implications will still confound many marketers. Here it is: all customers are NOT created equal. For instance, a typical community bank will lose money on nearly 70% of its customers, yet they often still market to them all equally. (Now I’m not advocating for treating customers less well based on the size of their account, but when it comes to managing your marketing dollars intelligently….)

Instead of trying to improve customer satisfaction for all customers at all customer touchpoints, I believe that an organization must intimately understand the financial and satisfaction metrics associated with each individual audience segment, as well as individual touchpoints. If you don’t know which touchpoints drive customer loyalty, you’ll have a hard time “turning that dial.”

One reason is that less valuable customers can often be served with less expensive touchpoints that still make it easy to do business, increase overall satisfaction levels, and add value to each interaction with a customer.

To achieve a measurable return on your communications investments, your organization must intimately understand the needs and associated economics of each customer group throughout their Customer Relationship Lifecycle. This includes identifying the cost of acquisition, customer lifetime value, service and retention cost, purchase tendencies and other key metrics, for your customers.

With this data in hand, you can identify your most valuable existing and potential customers, and understand the metrics of your other customer segments as well. This will allow you to tailor appropriate offerings and service levels for each segment. If, for instance, a web-based transaction costs your organization $1, a telephone transaction $5 and an average in-person transaction $25, you can make better decisions on how to deploy resources knowledgeably, ensuring that all offerings, communications, and interactions are delivered at the highest appropriate level of quality for each audience.

Just as we believe that delivering a positive customer experience (at every touchpoint throughout the Customer Relationship Lifecycle, for – almost – every segment) is critical to broader relationship metrics, we also believe that customer experience delivery and marketing communications investments based on a given segments value is simply good business.

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