I missed the weekly #custserv Tweetchat last night – “Customer Service Trends for 2011″ Jan 2 #custserv chat Tweetshow – which was discussing Forrester’s post by Kate Leggett – Forrester’s Top 10 Trends for Customer Service in 2011.
After reading the summary, it left me thinking that actually what customers want is: what they want when they want it.
We all have different expectations and baggage, different likes and dislikes, our moods constantly change and sometimes our expectations change depending on our mood.
For a business how do you design for this?
Traditionally, a process drove an outcome, and the technology determined the process. The options a customer had were limited, therefore a business could (rightly or wrongly) ignore. Customer-centricity at times equated to: like it or lump it. I generalise.
Now, in this age of social, we, the customer, want – actually we don’t want, we expect. We expect businesses to replace process with experience, and furthermore, we expect them to wrap empathy around that experience. Customer-centricity is about sensing my pain, feeling my frustration, acknowledging your fault. In Facebook terms: like me. And if you don’t like me, tough, but don’t, whatever you do, ignore me. You do so at your peril.
So where does that leave businesses out there? Still designing to the lowest common denominator or the average customer?
If only the lowest common denominator was saying ‘Thank you’ and ‘I’m sorry’.