Why is Siloed Thinking Bad for Customer Happiness Scores

Think about it this way:

What use can a doctor be if they can only spot (and thus, only address) injuries or illnesses suffered during an appointment? They may only have that appointment time to provide treatment, but they need much broader context to reach an accurate diagnosis.

Diminishing returns kill operational efficiency

Even if your company is an industry juggernaut with bottomless pockets, you don’t have unlimited time to spend on ceaselessly improving isolated elements of your CX.

What do you do then?

If you’re being narrow-minded, you’ll just carry on making changes. After all, there’s no such thing as a perfect page — perhaps an alteration to the background color would prove useful.

A chain is only as strong as its weakest link

Think about that bodybuilder again:

Opinions are (almost) always nuanced

Suppose that you reach out to a customer for some feedback on how they view you, and they give you an 8 out of 10. That’s a strong score, so it’s reason to celebrate, yes? But then you ask another customer and receive a 3. Wildly different opinions that you need to unpack. And in ideal circumstances, those customers will tell you exactly how they arrived at those scores, but that isn’t tremendously likely.

Here’s why:

  • Customers are rarely generous with their time. If someone has taken the time to score your service, that’s probably the best you’ll get from them.
  • Customers don’t always know how they formed their opinions. It’s perfectly possible for someone to dislike you without understanding why. (More on this later.)

It underestimates the importance of wider context

I just mentioned tiny issues wearing away goodwill, and I want to expand on that by touching upon the role of general context in the customer journey. Not all opinions of a brand can be easily attributed to specific high-level elements in your CX. Some are results of various factors that are heavily affected by external experiences — let’s look at an example.

Do you see the flaws in that reasoning?

For all you know, that second tool pioneered that great feature, only to see it copied by the first tool. And despite doing at least one thing worse, the second tool might otherwise be absolutely perfect for your requirements.

Why you should think bigger

You want to make your customers happy (that’s how you develop brand advocates) and to do it you need to understand them. Don’t just look beyond specific steps in your customer journey — look beyond your customer journey altogether.

Victoria Greene



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