Through the last decade, trends in digital transformation, customer experience, analytics, and personalisation have culminated into a core challenge—and opportunity—for brands in both B2C and B2B markets. That opportunity is the digital experience (DX).
Digital experience is the accumulation of customer interactions with a brand via a litany of devices, services, and touchpoints.
Managing and shaping the digital experience has emerged as possibly the most business-critical and all-encompassing effort for modern firms. Because its implications are so far-reaching, the digital experience can be considered the key defining characteristic of most companies today.
The Era of Digital Experience
We live in an era of increasing connectivity, data collection, and automation. And consumers have a stronger appetite for personalised, omnichannel experiences than ever before.
This evolution represents an enormous business opportunity for firms that embrace and excel at the implementation of new technology.
According to a study conducted by Forrester, customer experience (CX) leaders within a broad range of industries saw, on average, nearly six times faster revenue growth over a 5-year period compared to CX laggards within the same industries.
As with many facets of business, we see that emerging technology is driving change across the board. Technology is no longer just a tool that companies use to improve their existing operations; it is an engine that enables new operations and business transformation.
Reflected in that change, we see that customers within both B2C and B2B markets increasingly expect and demand that companies embrace these cutting-edge tools to improve the overall experience.
But for companies finding their bearings in this space, it’s important to take a step back.
To frame the scope of the digital experience it is necessary to break it down into its discrete parts.
Customer experience firm Nunwood has laid out six core pillars that comprise this new era of the digital experience. A customer, they argue, will ultimately evaluate an overall experience with a brand based on these six elements. This means that companies looking to improve the perceived experience should focus their efforts on implementing technology and policy aimed at these pillars:
Using customer data and historical behaviour to customize content and experience at scale.
Delivering on a broader brand ethos beyond pure business performance. Focus on providing intangible value and enrichment for customers.
Articulating clearly the real value your company offers to customers. Setting the stage for each interaction through consistent communication.
Correcting or recovering after a poor experience.
5. Time and Effort
Reducing friction and making the customer’s experience as simple and effortless as possible.
Demonstrable understanding of the customer, their needs, and how best to serve them.
The idea of the digital customer experience is often couched in terms of service and support—providing a positive experience when things go wrong. But, as these pillars show, the digital experience is shaped by the entire experience from start to finish, both positive and negative.
DX management programs must span the entirety of a customer’s experience with a brand. It can’t begin at the breaking point. That means being both proactive and reactive. The digital experience is defined by a businesses current process and capabilities, then refined based on it’s ability to measure and analyse the experience that it provides.
Technology Drives the Digital Experience
Taking stock of the critical role that digital experience plays for consumers and how a company can be strategic about shaping that experience are just the first few steps in a much larger journey to implement a DX management program.
The next step is technology.
No matter how ambitious a team may be, it simply can’t deliver a world-class digital experience without the right technology.
Imagine trying to cobble together a system of levers and pulleys that would help you deliver personalized content and messaging to each and every customer. The mind boggles at the complexity and wasted time and resources.
Instead, there are two core technologies that enable hyper-personalized content and tailored digital experiences at scale:
- Content management system (CMS)
- Customer relationship management (CRM)
By linking a company’s content assets to it’s customer or visitor records, businesses can overcome the biggest hurdle to delivering personalization, which is a unified digital experience platform (DXP). Together, these two technologies create a framework to build a robust DX management program.
Then, by implementing a CMS and CRM stack that allows personalized experiences, businesses are able to layer on additional functionality that moves the needle on each of the six pillars of the complete digital experience.
It all starts with these two pieces of infrastructure that unlock the ability to lead the way in digital experience across any device, timeline, and touchpoint.
By Brent Heslop, Contentstack.