On this episode of The CX Show, our co-founder and CEO, Dan Michaeli, sits down with Kerri Nelson, co-founder and CEO of CustomersFirst Now, a customer delight company that specializes in customer-centricity and grabbing hold of the customer experience through customer journey mapping.
Having been in the shoes of the customer herself and having worked in the customer experience field for many years, she decided to leave corporate America and start her own business nearly 3 years ago. This decision was prompted by her observation that no other company had the right combination of thought leadership, tools, and data analytics to bring the customer experience together and drive desirable financial outcomes. Kerri and her company developed an approach that helps companies improve their customer experience and bottom line.
When CustomersFirst Now first opened, Kerri had no idea what kind of success to expect or even how they would measure this success since she had previously worked only for large companies. They just went in knowing that they wanted to take the learnings, success, and best practices they had seen elsewhere and use it to build a company that would help other companies. She wanted her customers to fully understand that customer experience is directly linked to financial outcomes and that it wasn’t just a luxury that a business could do without.
When asked to define customer experience, Kerri divided it into two parts. First, is the customer perspective – what they see, feel, or experience at every single touchpoint along the customer journey. Second, is the result of that experience – is your business growing new customers, expanding existing customers, or retaining customers? That is the real (financial) measure of success.
To put it simply, Kerri defines customer experience as the end-to-end customer journey and the results of that journey.
Kerri then dives into customer journey mapping and how to work through a customer experience framework with a customer. She says CFN breaks down customer journey mapping into a 3-prong approach. First is internal – what do we (CFN) think the end of the map is and where do we see pain points? She’ll typically conduct research using interviews and workshops which helps her build out a draft of the map, touch by touch. Second, they ask their customers where they see problems – what they think is working and not working and what matters to them and why. Lastly, they’ll find out what the customers are actually doing. Using quantitative data, they’ll look to address the top 3 areas that need attention because those are the factors impacting spending behaviors.
When asked about the future of customer experience, Kerri said she believes that business will begin to rely less on surveys and more on the data that they have collected. People will get better at reading, understanding, and anticipating patterns in data and because of this, they will not need to rely as heavily on surveys because they’ll have plenty of information on customer wants, needs, and behaviors.