How operations managers can roll out a personalized customer experience in 5 steps

Julian Alvarado

6 min read Last Updated Oct 5, 2020

Does your business prioritize the customer experience? If you answered yes, we have a surprise for you. Statistics show that while 80% of businesses believe they offer superior customer experiences, only 8% of customers believe they receive one. Personalized customer experiences are how businesses can bridge the gap.

Welcome to the experience economy, where businesses can no longer rely solely on their product or service to differentiate themselves. Consumers expect personalized experiences at every point of the buying journey, so businesses looking to accelerate their growth and long-term success must provide outstanding personalized customer experiences at every touchpoint. 

Fortunately, operations managers can use technology to create enduring relationships between the brand and the customer. Unfortunately, only 9% of companies say they have implemented digital transformation to the degree that would give their business an edge over their competitors. 

What’s missing? The gap is in the strategies needed to create personalized experiences and their ability to execute. In this guide, we’ll outline 5 things Operation Managers can take to overcome the challenges of implementing personalized customer experiences. 

Why are personalized customer experiences so meaningful?

Marketing legend, Seth Godin, is noted for stating that “[Personalization] is a chance to differentiate at a human scale, to use behavior as the most important clue about what people want and, more importantly, what they need.”

73%  of American consumers say that the customer experience is a critical factor in their purchasing decision, even if they have a strong affinity to a brand or product. And almost a third of consumers wish their experiences were “far more” personalized; they expect an enhanced customer experience across multiple channels and touchpoints. 

It’s no wonder, then, that 70% of businesses consider personalization a top priority. According to a study conducted by Monate, there are 3 main reasons to invest in personalized customer experiences: 

  • 93% of companies with an “advanced personalization strategy” saw revenue growth compared to 45.4% of companies without a personalization strategy. 
  • Companies with ROI of 2x or more reported that personalized customer experiences composed 20% of their marketing budget.
  • Brands focused on personalized customer experiences and customer loyalty as their top KPI had an ROI of 3x or more. 

However, providing personalized customer experience is often easier said than done, especially for Operations Managers that have to overcome disparate systems and oversee multiple cross-functional teams.

In the next section, we’ll give you a playbook into how to create personalized customer experiences. 

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How to systemize personalized customer experience across your organization

Non-existent or ineffective customer experience management creates internal inefficiencies that damage your business’ bottom line. 

Customer experience management refers to a systematic process of collecting customer feedback, analyzing it, acting on the feedback, and engaging with the customers to close the loop. Implementing a customer experience management system will help your team systematize and build personalized customer experiences. 

Truly personalized customer experiences require a deep understanding of your customer’s journey. And once Operations Managers know what customers desire, they can serve them the right message at the right time, resulting in business results.

Here are 5 tips Operations Managers can use to roll out personalized customer experience strategies in their organization. 

Map the customer journey to give customers the “white glove” treatment

Every customer experience framework starts with mapping the customer’s journey. The customer journey is a representation of your customer’s lifecycle from awareness to advocacy.  Mapping the customer journey from end-to-end so your organization allows you to segment your customers based on their unique desires. Ask yourself, “what is the job your customers are looking for your product or service to solve?”

Building personalized customer experiences requires specific tailoring, extra services, or additional check-ins. Splitting the journey into different tracks gives consumers the impression that your goods or services are tailor-made to their needs.  

Set targets and goals… but have a single source of truth 

After all, you can’t improve what you can’t measure. Organizations need real-world data on their customer’s past interactions with you to personalize their customer experiences–and they need to be able to track all these interactions across teams and in one place. Developing an omnichannel approach can help cross-functional teams stay on top of the customer experience. 

Read our post for more information on how to measure customer experience. 

Get specific about your customer’s world

Meet your customers where they are and deliver content in whichever touchpoint they prefer. But remember to ensure that communication remains consistent through channels like your website, webchat, social media, and more. Personalize their marketing visuals and messaging on these mediums to satisfy customer expectations. 

The benefits are clear: personalized customer experiences have a direct effect on buying behavior. For example, a study by Accenture found that 56% of customers would rather buy from a retailer that recognizes them by name.

Collect (and listen) to customer feedback 

According to research, 68% of consumers abandon a business because they feel the brand does not care about them. Conducting regular customer satisfaction surveys is a great way to collect feedback and make your customers feel heard and valued, especially when a business turns that feedback into a product or service enhancement.    

Customers that know a business is listening to them are much more likely to have a positive experience with your business and are much more likely to return. 

Take control of your customer experience 

Experiences are everything. Today, customers have more opportunities to remain connected with businesses–and each other–than ever before and expect businesses to serve their needs instantaneously.

And if a business fails to meet customer expectations, a customer can easily find another option. In such an environment, the businesses that win are those who deliver superior customer experiences from the very first touchpoint.

Offering a frictionless customer experience is how your business can set itself apart from the competition through real-time engagement that spans touchpoints and multistage journeys.

Operations managers can set up successful personalized customer experiences by setting targets to track customer satisfaction; sharing data, and results of customer experience analytics to ensure there is a shared understanding of what’s happening, and listening to your customers.

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