Will technology save you? Not likely. It can help transform you but without a passion for amazing experiences that customers enjoy, find simple to navigate and meet their needs, no amount of technology will help. It starts with a well thought out strategy. It moves to people who committed to great experiences. It involves processes that support the designed experience. And it involves the right technology. But it doesn’t, under any circumstances, start with technology.
It is a myth that this is about technology. Everyone thinks that technology is changing behavior. The opposite is true. Our behavior is using technology. For example, the inclination to share is nothing new. We have been sharing our experiences before technology could enable it. All technology is doing is speeding it and enabling it on connected devices.
Are you betting that social media and mobile devices are the new channels for engagement? What data do you have to support that? You may have some and that is great. You may not and that is dangerous. What role does Facebook play in improving the experience for your major customers? What ROI are you getting out of Twitter?
Trust me, I believe in the strategic use of technology. I’m not a fan of blind faith. Hope is not a strategy. Soft or non-existent metrics aren’t useful. You can measure most if not all of your customer experience initiatives.
What is needed for transformation is a path that begins with discovery and completely rethinking the new customer journey. It is intentional and it is cost effective. To get somewhere, we need some discipline to test and prove that it works. We also need to have courage to find out it doesn’t. We can’t get paralyzed because we don’t know if it will work or not. Avoid the temptation to pilot something and have the courage to embark on a small test.
If you have seen the TV show Dragnet, you remember Jack Webb making famous the line “Just the facts”. That should be our internal mantra. The truth is that results can and should be quantified. Someone advocating the flavor of the month with no tests and results needs to be challenged. It is generally a question of who will have the courage to do it. A spirit of discovery will lead you to know where you are losing customers and where you are gaining them. Donations are constantly being earned and lost. Some that is happening through new channels and touch points. A willingness to test and discover is your friend. Blindly following what hasn’t been tested is your enemy.
A great starting point is to always walk on the same path you think your customers are or should be. What is the experience you have? Is it the same one you want for your customers?