Blog

Why Luxury Brands Need To Focus On The Human Customer Experience

Posted by Morana Bakula

Apr 4, 2017 10:26:46 AM

Yes, brands are dazzling customers with virtual and augmented reality, interactive screens and AI-powered everything, yet this provides an opportunity for brands to differentiate through the emotional value customers gain from their entire purchase experience.

It means brands need to get better at being emotional. Customers want “emotional luxury” derived from feeling recognized, special, and known; yet, only 20% of consumers say they feel special and recognized by a brand representative. This is a massive, untapped opportunity for brands to better engage with consumers.

Read More

Topics: Loyalty Program, Customer Experience, Loyalty Report, Training and Learning, Retail Luxury, CX

Meeting Your Objectives Through Your People: 12 Considerations for Business Coaching

Posted by Nancy Dewar

Sep 8, 2016 3:02:03 PM

When or Why Would You Need to Hire a Business Coach?

Customer-centricity seems to be the new buzzworthy topic in boardrooms. But a customer “obsessed” culture is not created overnight. One way to accelerate through the change curve is to bring in a coach to ensure that the organization has the right guidance, support and focus needed to create the new customer-centric way of being.

A change toward customer-centricity starts with your people committing to making changes on a personal level. Business coaches are trained to help organizations meet objectives through their people.

Business coaches are individuals who have worked in various aspects of the corporate world, who have extensive real world experience, and who have the business acumen to deal with anyone from a CEO to a frontline employee. Coaches also typically have high EQ’s and the strategic ability to ask the pertinent questions, digging deep to uncover the insights of what’s really going on.

Read More

Topics: Customer Experience, Coaching

#autobond: Marketing Intangibles and Intangible Marketing—Lessons for the Automotive Industry

Posted by Chris Travell

May 26, 2016 3:22:13 PM

Back in 1981 the economist and Harvard professor Theodore Levitt published his landmark article in the HBR, “Marketing Intangible Products and Product Intangibles.” It’s a great read since his insights relate directly to many of the challenges marketers face today. 

When prospective customers can’t experience the product in advance, they are asked to buy what are essentially promises—promises of satisfaction. Even tangible, testable, feelable, smellable products are, before they’re bought, largely just promises.

Largely just promises. Doesn’t that just encapsulate the challenge marketers face?

Read More

Topics: Customer Experience, #autobond

#autobond: The Importance of 2nd Delivery Nights

Posted by Chris Travell

May 13, 2016 9:08:49 AM

Picking up a new car is magical. The new car smell. The technology. The enhanced performance. Brands and dealers that place an increased emphasis on the delivery (and do it well) increase the chances of a higher rating on their CX surveys. And when you think about it, it makes sense. It’s the last impression a customer has before they drive home and share their experience–hopefully positive–that they had at the dealership.

However, the bloom is still on the rose when the customer picks up the car. Even though they were shown how to pair their phone, operate the NAVI, or use voice commands, it doesn’t always stick. And if it doesn't stick, the result could be lower CX scores both on the brand’s internal program and on syndicated studies like JD Power. The technology may work as planned but if the customer doesn’t know how to use it, they think something is wrong with the car and offer up a poor score.

Read More

Topics: Customer Experience, #autobond

Westjet—You Were So Close!

Posted by Chris Travell

Apr 7, 2016 1:43:09 PM

 

Flew back from NADA in Las Vegas on Sunday on Westjet 1117 (in case you’re reading Westjet). For what should have been a routine flight, the experience turned into a considerable delay resulting in an arrival in YYZ about 12:30 a.m.

In a touch of serendipity, I sat next to Sham Ahluwalia, an executive with General Motors who has a ton of experience in the world of CX. As the afternoon and evening unfolded, we dissected and discussed the way the airline handled the situation. A great learning exercise.

Read More

Topics: Customer Experience

#autobond: The Importance of the Front Line

Posted by Chris Travell

Mar 31, 2016 4:25:16 PM

I’ve been involved in measuring the customer experience (CX) for over 20 years. It’s critical to get the voice of the customer to understand where a brand, dealer, salesperson, service advisor etc is strong or weak so they can improve. I get that in spades. However, over that time one of the areas that has been noticeably absent from the public discourse on this stuff is measuring the employee CX on an ongoing basis. This is odd because these individuals are absolutely critical in delivering the brand experience. They’re on the frontline so wouldn’t we want to hear regularly what they have to say so we can continuously improve?

My observation has been that the employee survey is done about once a year. Tick that box.  

My call today is to incorporate measuring employee CX into your overall CX strategy. Yesmeasuring how the customer feels is criticalbut let’s start putting a little more emphasis on what our frontline people have to say, and doing it on an ongoing basis.

Read More

Topics: Customer Experience, #autobond

#autobond: Differentiating Lexus in the Hyper-Competitive Luxury Market

Posted by Chris Travell

Mar 3, 2016 2:22:00 PM

At the recent Canadian International Autoshow in Toronto, I had a chance to talk to Jennifer Barron, the new Director of Lexus in Canada. Jennifer is a very interesting personwith Lexus since 1990, she has played an instrumental role in designing the brand’s customer experience. Now, things have come full circle and she’s running the place.

Jennifer talks about what differentiates Lexus in the crowded luxury market and what it will take to compete in 2016 and beyond.

Read More

Topics: Customer Experience, #autobond

#autobond: Changing Customer Expectations in the Automotive Industry

Posted by Chris Travell

Feb 25, 2016 11:00:23 AM

At the recent Canadian International Autoshow, I had a chance to speak with Cyril Dimitris, Toyota Canada’s new Vice President of Sales. The former Director of Lexus and Scion Divisions (among several other previous positions with Toyota), Cyril brings years of automotive brand expertise and deep understanding of the automotive customer to his new role.

In our conversation, Cyril talks about changing customer expectations, how Toyota is adapting, the U Squared concept, and the recent decision to nix the Gen-Y oriented Scion brand. 

Read More

Topics: Customer Experience, #autobond

#autobond: Making Goal Setting Work in 2016

Posted by Chris Travell

Feb 10, 2016 12:42:18 PM

I get worried sometimes when I hear manufacturers talk about their goals. Obviously everybody in the dealer network needs to know where the goal posts are, but sometimes the goals can be so unrealistic that they are actually setting dealers up for failure. Is it reasonable, for example, that a brand will jump up 15 spots on JDPA or NVCS? Maybe not, especially when few resources, aka – money and management expertise, are dedicated to achieving the goal.

Here’s a few more thoughts about goal setting in 2016. Let’s be practical about this. 

Read More

Topics: Customer Experience, #autobond

#autobond: Twitter and Unearthing Not-So-Hidden Opportunities

Posted by Chris Travell

Jan 28, 2016 3:00:25 PM

At the recent Automotive News World Congress in Detroit Robert Pietsch, Director Sales, Auto and Tech at Twitter, quoted some statistics which I found fascinating. 140,000 people per day tweet that they are going car shopping and most mention the brands they’re looking at. However, only about 5 percent receive a response back from the brand.

Read More

Topics: Brand Loyalty, Customer Experience, #autobond