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customer experience, Customer experience awards, customer-centric, customer-first, Digital customer experience, tech

We’re delighted to announce that lens Co-Founder, Helen Fennell, will be judging at the UK Digital Experience Awards 2018, which will take place in London on 12th July.

With a great list of finalists announced, we’re really looking forward to being part of the judging process.

We’re also interested in seeing if/how the key considerations that we discussed in our previous blog (focused on the UK Customer Experience Awards 2017) might have been applied to digital experience specifically.

If you’re involved in and/or are going to be at the Awards, please do get in touch – we’d love to hear from you!

 

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Customer journeys, customer-centric, data, Digital customer experience, tech

Our clients come to us at many different starting points and with a range of different business challenges.  Here is a summary of just some of the questions that a customer journey approach has helped our clients to answer…

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  • What do our customers want to achieve with us and how are we delivering? Customer journeys are defined by customer goals (intended outcomes).  Defining your journeys from a customer perspective identifies why your customers are engaging with your brand – and the goals that you do/ don’t currently help them to achieve.  The extent to which you’re delivering against customer goals should be an ongoing measure of success
  • How do we attract/ convert/ retain more customers through our CX? Many businesses, particularly those with a digital presence / focus, have lots of data on where customers come in to / ‘drop out’ of their CX; however, it is only when we take a journey approach that we truly understand why customers come in or ‘drop out’.  This is often due to the cumulative impact of different touchpoints or the extent to which the business is meeting customers’ rational/ emotional needs throughout the experience
  • When, where & how should we communicate with our customers? The comms / contact strategy and the customer journey are intrinsically linked. A CRM strategy should also therefore be aligned around the customer journey and should be both an input and output of a customer journey mapping exercise
  • How do we improve our CX and where should we prioritise?  The customer journey is a framework that enables businesses to connect all relevant sources of data and insight – customer, operational, and commercial. This provides a business with a holistic picture and enables prioritisation and decision-making
  • How do we deliver a consistent experience?  And where can we differentiate? Many businesses have a brand promise and a CX vision…and some may also have a set of CX principles.  An understanding of customer journeys is then required to ensure that a) these are delivered consistently across the customer lifecycle and b) the business is able to identify the key moments where they can differentiate the experience through ‘signature actions’ that tie into the brand
  • We have a new idea/ product/ service – how do we design the right CX? With start-ups and fintech businesses on the rise, innovation is all around us!  An approach that applies the principles of design-thinking will be invaluable here; taking a human-centred approach and starting with the ‘jobs-to-be-done’, overlaying the possibilities of technology and the requirements for business success
  • What should the ideal ‘to be’ experience look like and how do we close the gaps?  With industry trends/ changes (e.g. open banking), innovation and competitor activity in mind, businesses are understandably looking to the future – understanding the ‘as is’ versus desired ‘to be’ customer journeys informs the CX roadmap and clear actions required to achieve the business’ aspirational state
  • What should our channel strategy be?  How do we future-proof our CX?  There are lots of emerging channels and new tech. that can support the delivery of the CX – AI, machine learning, chatbots, and the ‘internet of things’ (IoT) are all hot topics.  However, just because we can, doesn’t mean we should – a customer journey approach helps to understand the role of different channels and tech. across the CX and identifies where digital is key vs. where phone/ F2F human contact (etc.) is required by customers

Is your business currently facing any of these challenges?  We’d love to hear from you if you’d like to chat through your challenges and how a customer journey approach might be able to help…

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customer experience, Customer journey, Customer journey mapping capability, Customer journeys, customer-centric, Digital customer experience, financial services, life insurance

The life insurance industry continues to face several long-standing and well-established challenges –  low levels of consumer interest and engagement, a lack of knowledge/ understanding of products, and generally low levels of consumer trust in insurance brands (to name a few). Today, in the age of the customer, life insurance companies are also faced with:

Recently named as ‘Best Online Life Insurance Provider’ at the 2017 Your Money Awards, Beagle Street are a company who have, since starting out in 2012, faced these challenges head on and are truly embracing the age of the customer.  A recent experience of purchasing life insurance with Beagle Street has enabled us to illustrate the key success factors that contribute to them getting it right…

#1 Strong and differentiated branding

I’d personally been putting off purchasing life insurance for months, having done some initial research via specialist online aggregators and then telling myself that I would ‘do it later.’  I was only prompted to think about life insurance again when I saw Beagle Street’s recent TV ad.  My initial reaction was, ‘Who?!’  Being honest, I’d never heard of the brand; however, their informal and friendly branding and tone of voice stood out against my perception that life insurance brands can be ‘stuffy’ – so it got my attention right away.  The ad. went on to build positive perceptions of the brand in two ways – 1) it spoke to me in my own language – plain English, not insurance jargon and 2) it highlighted Beagle Street’s free will service (amongst other things) which, to me, said that the business has integrity.  This wasn’t enough to convert me at this point…but it did put Beagle Street firmly on my shortlist.

Again, I waited a while before acting – prompted to re-engage with the sector by a text message from a (rather persistent) Independent Financial Advisor.  My further research, this time via one of the big four comparison sites, put Beagle Street at the top of the list on price (they were cheaper for a higher level of cover) – reaffirming my perceptions re. integrity. 

What stood out to me next was the ‘about us’ section on their website, which gave me the impression that their proposition genuinely had been developed based on a sound understanding of customer needs…and this, in turn, made me feel that I wanted to take the next step on my journey – a deeper exploration of how they might be able to meet my needs.

#2 A clear and simple explanation of products

I then decided to start the online application process, though wasn’t completely sure if I’d see it through to purchase at this stage.  It’s worth pointing out that I do know a little bit about life insurance, having previously worked with various insurance brands; however, this was the first time that I had personally purchased it – so I’m by no means an expert.

The clear and concise explanation of the different product types was therefore really helpful – not too much information but just enough to confirm that what I thought was correct…and there was further information available if I needed it. 

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#3 A quick and easy online purchase journey

The application process itself was super quick (it took me about 10mins from start to finish) and was really easy.  A couple of things that contributed to this were:

  • I was able to do a ‘quick quote’ before the full application
  • Throughout the ‘quick quote’ I was only shown one question at a time
  • Questions were displayed in a clear and visual way, using large icons (like in the screenshot above) and boxes
  • The application form was really intuitive (e.g. my personal details were pulled from the ‘quick quote’ through to the full application) and…
  • …finally, it felt like minimal effort for me as I didn’t have to do a lot of typing!

As well as the above specifics, it’s also worth noting that I was able to complete the end-to-end application form online – i.e. via my channel of choice – something that, even today, we shouldn’t take for granted.

#4 A memorable welcome

At the end of the application process a pop-up appeared, offering web chat with a message along the lines of, ‘Hello, welcome to Beagle Street, would you like to chat?’ I didn’t take them up on the offer as, at that stage, I didn’t feel that I needed to; however, it did make me feel ‘welcomed’ as a new customer.   You may argue that they could/ should have offered web chat earlier in the journey (when I may have still had some product-related questions to answer to inform my decision) – and there is definitely a case for this.  However, the fact that it was offered when they already had my business made me feel that they genuinely value me as a customer. They also followed-up quite quickly with an invite to complete a survey, which tells me that they are interested in my feedback – and, as a result, it re-affirmed that they value their customers.

#5 Clear comms. that set my expectations

And last, but by no means least, was the way that they clearly set my expectations at key points in the journey.  Upon completion of the application, I was told the three things I should expect to happen next, alongside my key policy details, who to contact if I had a problem, and three things I may want to do myself (see below).

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I’ve gone ahead and done the first of those two things and, on their part, Beagle Street both sent my documents and uploaded them online.  However, if I were to highlight one area for consideration, it’s the role that other channels may play in supporting this digital experience/ ensuring a connected experience across channels – e.g. I don’t recall them contacting me directly for my ‘welcome call’ (as promised above).

The impact?

I was left feeling genuinely positive about a) the fact that I had purchased life insurance and b) that I am now a customer of Beagle Street.  I now have high hopes about my experience moving forwards as I sense that Beagle Street values me as a customer – it will be interesting to see if or how they engage with me to remind me of how my policy meets my needs throughout life over the next few years…

 

 

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