24 January 2014

Delivering better UX through interaction and customization

Identification, Differentiation, Interaction and Customization are all key activities to better create and manage customer relationships. It’s the last two, however, that significantly impact customer experience. What do they entail? A recent post at 1to1media.com explored them in more detail.

Don Peppers, writing at 1to1media.com, has been looking at what he identifies as four steps to “setting up and managing customer relationships”. The activities are the “IDIC” process:

  • Identify customers,
  • Differentiate them,
  • Interact with them, and
  • Customize for them.

Interaction and Customization are activities that influence just how customers are served, and companies occupy different locations along each spectrum.

“A company may be able to interact with individual customers via phone and chat, for instance, while it doesn’t do so well in social media. Or a firm might have the ability to deliver different types of products to different categories of customers, but it can’t really make specific changes to its product or service for particular customers.”

The activities can be seen to be different axes of a matrix, describing the capabilities of a given company to deliver a certain kind of customer relationship:

From: 1to1media.com

Peppers describes the differences between companies that fall in different places on the matrix, summarized here:

  •  “In Quadrant 1 a company relies primarily on advertising and promotion, and its product or service offering is standard for virtually all customers, delivering a “mass” customer experience designed to be pretty much the same for everyone.
  • The “niche” customer experience delivered in Quadrant 2 is the result of a company that can alter its product in meaningful ways for different types of customers, but it isn’t capable of interacting with those customers richly enough to be able to fit specific products to specific customers.
  • In Quadrant 3 a company has the reverse problem: it isn’t capable of customizing or tailoring its product offering, but it does have the capability to interact on a real-time basis with individual customers.”

However the best customer experience is likely to be delivered by companies who occupy the remaining quadrant on the matrix:

  • “It is in Quadrant 4 that a company is capable of delivering a genuinely “one to one” customer experience. If your business is capable not only of interacting efficiently with customers in real time, but also of tailoring your product-service offering for individual customers, then the relationship you have with a customer will be more meaningful for the customer and more profitable for you… It is in Quadrant 4, with a one-to-one customer experience, that a business can realize the true benefits of managing relationships with customers.”

Source: “What Kind of Customer Experience Are You Capable of Delivering?” (Don Peppers a.k.a. @DonPeppers, 1to1media.com)

Customer experience (67), User experience (39)

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