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From Customer Experience to Community Experience

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Over the past year or so there has been much said and done on Customer Experience (CX) across all sectors. The Optus Financial Services and Insurance (FSI) Future of Business Report shows that this sector is leading the charge in digital channels for CX, making the user experience more enjoyable and simple.

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Digital marketers have made major advancements and are empowered with new data analytics engines. The focus has shifted squarely to the individual, and customization of their experience to add value and further improve that experience. Banking customers, for instance, are able to access better offers when analytics are deployed to suggest products that suit individual needs, based on previous activity and product searches on websites. Merchants can also have their products and offers matched to customers who browse online stores or even large shopping malls.


How can CX be further improved?


Another area that banks and finance companies have been keen to build is the sense of community among customers, and for branch networks put locals in touch with company representatives who understand local issues and customer needs. This is the next evolution in CX, or what I like to call, Community Experience.


What is Community Experience?


I'd like to illustrate this with a simple example. Customer A is selling their house and has a mortgage with Bank Y. Another prospect customer of Bank Y, call them B, wants to buy a house. A Community Experience is where the bank, knowing both customer A and B, would put them in touch. Why? It allows the Bank to ensure that the mortgage that A holds on the property can be converted to a mortgage for B and make the sale process a whole lot easier.


Another example might be where customer A from above wants to renovate their house. Bank Y has a small business customer that does renovations. Business Intelligence rules could match these two.


The benefits to the organisation would be substantial. Not only do they make a further improvement to Customer Experience with greater simplicity, they also increase the reach of the services they can provide and open up new opportunities for revenue. The jewel here though, is that they are becoming more valuable to their customer.


As more organisations look at how they can better service their customers, the meshing of digital and physical community environments can provide real advantages to your organisation.


By Darren Wathen, Optus Business Industry Manager. More from Darren on Twitter: @wathend


All views expressed are the author's own.