Emotions play a big role in determining the customer’s overall experience. They may be the single biggest factor in the customer’s overall experience of your service or business.
During one session of the CX Pro Course with CXP Ghana Association (I highly recommend you register for this), the facilitator shared a compelling view of what customer experience (CX) is from an interaction she had had with her colleague.
This colleague defined CX as “how you make the customers feel about themselves whenever they interact with you or your business.” It took me a while to connect the dots, but it was such a Eureka moment when I did.
Most of us correctly surmise that the phrase “how a customer feels about your business” basically refers to the customer’s emotions. I will go a bit further to say that these emotions can be calibrated with deliberate steps.
Consider this example: I visit your shop to try out the makeup products that you have on sale. As I step in, you greet me with a friendly welcome, and that instantly makes me feel good. Such a simple act of kindness can prompt me to spread the word about how you made me feel, even if I do not make any purchases. I would become an advocate for your shop, encouraging others to come and experience the same warmth that I did.
Let’s revisit our hypothetical shop. You apply some fantastic makeup on me, and I feel beautiful and glamorous to the point where I question whether the mirror has a filter. The high level of satisfaction swiftly transforms into a strong attachment to your brand. I will mentally link the positive emotions I have about my appearance with my association with your business or brand. In my opinion, this is precisely what characterizes customer advocacy. At this stage, I am confident that you can make others feel great about themselves, and I will seek out opportunities to spread the word to others.
Emotions are a big thing and as a Customer Experience Practitioner, you need to curate the emotions you want your customers to have when they interact with you. You must put in the effort to make the customer feel good about themselves when they choose your brand.
Your most valuable asset in cultivating these emotions is empathy. Whenever I receive a customer complaint, I am never taken aback or irritated by the seemingly severe nature of their criticism. This is because I promptly empathize with them and put myself in their position, mentally retracing their steps and identifying my emotional state at each stage of their experience. To put it simply, more often than not, I would have probably reacted even more strongly than the customer did. 😅
Understanding the importance of a customer’s emotions can be beneficial in managing different types of customers since each person reacts differently to the same scenario. If someone has previously been disappointed by your business, they may become upset if you describe an error as a ‘minor oversight.’ It is easy to contrast this reaction with that of another customer who accepted your apology and departed, resulting in the assumption that the previous customer is merely hard to satisfy.
Both customers felt emotions but on different points of the spectrum. Again, if you felt the angry customer was overreacting, you subconsciously limit yourself with the extent you’d go to recover the service. Fully understanding these emotions will help you choose an appropriate course of remedial action.
In the case of the angry customer, recall that the person had a disappointing experience. Such persons require very quick resolution such that as you apologize, you confirm the resolution of the issue and offer some form of compensation.
Handling customers, their emotions, and experiences can be an intimidating task, much like managing human resources. There is no definitive approach, only a structured framework for arriving at the optimal solution. This is likely why customer experience (CX) training programs frequently welcome diverse perspectives. While many options appear viable and may be effective for certain customers, there is no single best solution for every situation.
In conclusion, my guidance remains unchanged. It is crucial to continue your personal development, refine your inherent abilities, and attentively listen to the customer’s voice. They communicate, even if it is sometimes through silence, and the solution lies within their voice. Your trained skills will assist you in discovering that solution and effectively managing their emotions.
Remember, humans are emotional creatures, so emotions drive their perceptions(experiences), and perceptions drive their behaviour (advocacy).
Let us continue striving to help our customers feel good about themselves, thereby improving their overall experience!
If you are embarking on your CX professional journey, consider joining the CXP Ghana Association and take advantage of the numerous opportunities provided to enhance your skills.
#cx #cxtips #cxm #cxandemotions #customeremotions