Magazine article CRM Magazine

How to Sell Customer Experience to a Tough Crowd: Your Colleagues: With CX Initiatives, You Have to Tangibly Prove Value

Magazine article CRM Magazine

How to Sell Customer Experience to a Tough Crowd: Your Colleagues: With CX Initiatives, You Have to Tangibly Prove Value

Article excerpt

WHEN IT comes to the products we purchase, we all want proof that they'll deliver what they say they will, whether it's whiter teeth, cleaner clothes, or better-tasting food. To help persuade us, marketers use documented research, awards, testimonials from reputable sources, and so on.

The same holds for selling customer experience (CX) initiatives internally. Colleagues will want assurances the effort toward gathering customer intelligence and launching improvement initiatives is worth it; in fact, they'll probably also want to know what's in it for them, and whether the campaign will add to their already overwhelming workloads.

Front-line employees will likely say they already know their customers. Marketers will claim they already have a handle on the market. And executives will want to hear the projected return on investment.

In other words, when customer experience professionals launch their CX strategies, they don't always get exceptionally warm support. They must constantly prove the worth of their efforts. In fact, they must sell it to their colleagues.

The question is, how? Here are four common approaches to selling an investment in CX, along with the objections to anticipate for each:

It's the right thing to do. CX professionals can state the obvious--every company should listen to their customers for altruistic reasons. In fact, one could even say companies have an obligation to listen and make changes based on their input.

But that may not go far in today's business environment. The reality is there are lots of things we should do, but we simply can't do everything. Customer experience initiatives for the sake of good feelings will probably fall flat with most colleagues.

It's been shown to improve the bottom line. Another approach is to point to research that shows that companies with strong customer experience initiatives perform better in their respective markets. My own company tracks an index of our publicly traded clients that invest in CX initiatives. We compare their performance with the major stock indices and find that these customer-focused companies outperform the market by more than six to one! Hard to argue with, right?

And yet, people tend to look at industry research and question if it actually applies to their company. …

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