Company News • 24.09.2019

HappyOrNot CX360 leader insights

Do you know what type of experience customers expect from your brand?

The following is based on a June 2019 interview with Sami Hero, Chief Operating Officer at HappyOrNot’s global headquarters in Tampere, Finland. 

He spoke with freelance writer Tom Hagy of Philadelphia. In it we will share our thoughts and best practices for imbuing customer focus into your organization’s DNA, and showing how CX will improve your competitiveness and your bottom line. To get CX right, successful organizations nurture cross-functional cooperation and integrate certain CX essentials into their culture. Our mission in producing this series is to help more organizations get CX right.

Supplier
Logo: HappyOrNot

HappyOrNot

Innere Kanalstraße 15
50823 Köln
Germany
Man in dark jacket and white shirt smiles into the camera....
Sami Hero joined HappyOrNot as Chief Operating Officer in April 2018 and manages the entire spectrum of operations and marketing.
Source: HappyOrNot
Photo: HappyOrNot CX360 leader insights

What is it and what is it not? How do you know your organization delivers a positive CX? Companies often get it wrong because they think they have a system in place, but that system could actually be damaging their customers’ experiences. That often translates into counterproductive activity in which employees defend themselves from falling satisfaction scores, rather than improving customer experience. What companies often don’t know is that persistent CX tracking can inform them when making decisions that will improve profits. Read on for what Sami had to say about his B2C and B2B experiences.

Sami, what does customer experience mean to you? 

Sami Hero: The definition changes depending on the customer. But generally speaking, it has to do with the emotional connection the customer makes with the vendor or service provider. 

Can you think of a B2B experience where the emotional connection was negative?

I was working for a large information research company on an e-commerce project and had contracted an outside firm to help with the technology. The contractor was way over budget. They were nearly $1M over, in fact. Despite that the product didn’t work! When we approached them about it they acknowledged the problem and said they could fix it, but it would cost us. 

Even though it was their work that failed?

They completely screwed it up. 

OK. What about on the consumer side? Have you had better luck there?

On the consumer side, the first experience that comes to mind is with an auto repair shop. I own a 20-year-old BMW convertible, so from time to time I have it in for repairs. After one visit I picked up the car and it ran fine, but they had broken a reflector on the rear bumper. I sent them a photo and they said they’d take care of it. Time dragged on and they didn’t fix it. I kept calling. Eventually they just gave up and said they couldn’t find the part. A year later they contacted me wondering why they hadn’t seen me lately and reminded me about the importance of auto maintenance. 

I guess they didn’t check their records. 

I generally have minimal expectations when it involves auto repair, but they managed to fail even those.  

Would you say that a company’s CX expectations are part of their brand, then? 

Absolutely. Good companies set the expectations before the engagement, then they over-deliver. If you don’t first set expectations then customer satisfaction will be a moving target. You can’t manage to everyone’s expectations. The spectrum is too broad.

Photo: HappyOrNot CX360 leader insights
Source: HappyOrNot

Sometimes employees mean well, but the CX system is broken. Can you give any examples of systemic failures?

I have traveled quite a bit in my career. I am from Finland and work here now, but have worked in America and traveled a great deal within the States and Europe. 

I was a frequent flyer with one airline. They would give me upgrade coupons fairly often. One time, even though it was last minute, they bent the rules and let me use a coupon. I was immediately upgraded to first class for a long flight from Newark to Scottsdale.  I was delighted and comfortably in my seat with all that extra leg room for about 10 minutes. Then the agent came back from the gate to downgrade me back to economy. Supposedly they weren’t allowed to use the seat for upgrade.. 

That’s a letdown.

Yes, but my original premium economy seat was already given away to another passenger, so not only did I not get first class, but I was sent to the back to the plane. 

Photo: HappyOrNot CX360 leader insights
Source: HappyOrNot

I’m sure they made it up to you. 

They said they would take great care of me and even introduced me to the purser who would be paying extra attention to me during the flight. 

Well, that’s nice.

I never saw the person again. 

Oh.  

I manage a fairly large team of people focusing on customer service and marketing, so I find this kind of attitude unacceptable. The coupons sound nice, but if they expire quickly or can only be used for short flights or flights will multiple connections, that’s a failure in the company’s system. Why would you ever have a program where you will quite consistently fail your customers? The promise of something good that you don’t deliver is cheaper for the company – like gift cards that you know will never get cashed – but does little for the customer. It even frustrates them.

What about organizations that use NPS (Net Promoter Score) systems? That’s a good way to systematically improve CX, right? 

It depends on what they do with the scores. If an organization experiences a 10-point drop in their NPS and their first reaction is how to spin the story for upper management, rather than improving customer service, then they have a broken system. Rather than a temperature gauge, too often the NPS score becomes the basis of an employee punishment and reward system. 

There are a lot of customer feedback apps and social media sites out there now which make it easy for people to praise or complain about service. Aren’t these a good free source of CX measurements for companies?

A problem with these apps is that they often focus on what one customer thinks about the service provided by one company employee. It’s as if they are playing to the critics, but they are missing the point. Employees and customers will come and go. While individual experiences can’t be ignored, it does little to serve a company that wants to improve its CX brand in the long term. If you have a growth mindset and you’re up for learning all the time, the data set you get – like the data you get from HappyOrNot — will inform you as to what the masses think both immediately and over time. 

Changing the subject to ROI. Are companies using the real-time feedback to improve profits? 

A good example of using CX feedback to generate profits is when the company can expose unknown preferences for products. For example, a café that serves an office building might find out that its customers really like their meat loaf, which might be cheaper to serve than less popular brussels sprouts but have a higher value to customers. It’s the constant micro feedback where you can see trends that help companies improve ROI by making minor adjustments.

related articles:

popular articles:

Thumbnail-Photo: Rewarding customers for sustainable shopping...
29.07.2019   #sustainability #loyalty cards

Rewarding customers for sustainable shopping

Koin Rewards & Fidel bring loyalty and card-linking together

Koin Rewards, the ethical rewards platform built on the blockchain, announced that it has partnered with card linking API Fidel to build a responsible and sustainable rewards program for shoppers.Koin Rewards is working with Fidel to build a ...

Thumbnail-Photo: Crisis management in retail: Making a mountain out of a molehill –...
18.07.2019   #online trading #brick and mortar retail

Crisis management in retail: Making a mountain out of a molehill – what now?

How retailers should prepare for crisis communication

A lengthy order, a faulty delivery, an unsatisfactory customer service - all this is quickly evaluated and spread on the Internet and can have negative consequences for the retailer. We talked to Alexander De Ruiter from OBI4wan about the tasks ...

Thumbnail-Photo: Creative Retail Awards shortlist announced at RetailEXPO...
24.05.2019   #displays #design

Creative Retail Awards shortlist announced at RetailEXPO

Innovative, inspirational and forward-thinking retail display and design

The Creative Retail Awards, which recognise and reward innovation and excellence in worldwide retail design, released the shortlist for their 2019 Awards at RetailEXPO, Olympia London last week.The Awards received hundreds of entries from around the ...

Thumbnail-Photo: Of local heroes and global players
04.07.2019   #online trading #digital marketing

Of local heroes and global players

An overview of online marketplaces

Amazon and eBay – many retailers heavily rely on these top names. Yet there are other online marketplaces that could offer useful features. After all, the easy solution isn’t necessarily the perfect fit for ...

Thumbnail-Photo: retail trends 2-2019: focus sales promotion
03.06.2019   #customer satisfaction #customer relationship management

retail trends 2-2019: focus "sales promotion"

How to win, serve, and keep customers

Read our latest edition retail trends 2-2019 online as an e-paper. ...

Thumbnail-Photo: Stores with employee background checks favored...
17.06.2019   #security #customer satisfaction

Stores with employee background checks favored

Sterling’s 2019 ‘Retail Industry Screening’ survey

Sterling, expert in background and identity services, today released the results of its 2019 ‘Retail Industry Screening’ survey. An inaugural initiative, the survey examines Americans’ perspectives, experiences and concerns related ...

Thumbnail-Photo: Choosing the right marketplace for your business: A profitable niche...
17.06.2019   #online trading #marketing research

Choosing the right marketplace for your business: A profitable niche product is key

"Platform strategies are critical for success," says Dr. Kai Hudetz of the IFH Cologne (Institute for Trade Research)

Ebay or Amazon, Zalando or Otto? Retailers have many options when it comes to an online marketplace where they can sell their merchandise. Success for retailers hinges on making good choices.Dr. Kai Hudetz, CEO of the IFH Cologne, gives tips on what ...

Thumbnail-Photo: Overspending is common when shopping online
25.06.2019   #online trading #customer analysis

Overspending is common when shopping online

Report on digital spending and its impact on American's credit card debt

About 2 in 5 (42 percent) of consumers admit blowing their budgets while online shopping in the past 6 months, according to new research from CouponFollow, an online couponing platform. The new report surveyed over 1,700 American consumers on their ...

Thumbnail-Photo: BOPIS: state of the retail industry
16.08.2019   #e-commerce #customer satisfaction

BOPIS: state of the retail industry

Customer experience in the “Buy online, pick up in-store” process

“Retailers who are winning in the BOPIS game have a mature inventory management system that clearly indicates what is available for BOPIS, but those who prioritize order fulfillment are building the greatest customer loyalty as their BOPIS ...

Thumbnail-Photo: GfK study: Brick-and-mortar retail in the EU...
14.06.2019   #marketing research #trend research

GfK study: Brick-and-mortar retail in the EU

Highest 2019 growth in Romania and Lithuania

The majority of European consumers are currently subjected to opposing forces. On the one hand, this consists of uncertainty over Brexit, trade conflicts and weaker growth prospects in important export markets such as China. But on the other hand, ...

Supplier

CCV Deutschland GmbH
CCV Deutschland GmbH
Gewerbering 1
84072 Au i.d.Hallertau
POS TUNING Udo Voßhenrich GmbH & Co KG
POS TUNING Udo Voßhenrich GmbH & Co KG
Am Zubringer 8
32107 Bad Salzuflen
HappyOrNot
HappyOrNot
Innere Kanalstraße 15
50823 Köln
iXtenso - Magazin für den Einzelhandel
iXtenso - Magazin für den Einzelhandel
Celsiusstraße 43
53125 Bonn