AT A GLANCE
- Complex stakeholder organizations such as airports, free-trade zones and cities can offer meta customer experience (MCX.)
- MCX is not easy. It takes a lot of time. But some organizations achieved success.
- Culture, measurement, and governance are the top three challenges of any MCX program.
The customer experience (CX) is a competitive differentiator and ultimately helps organizations to increase retention, acquisition and generates top and bottom-line economic growth. According to the Adobe digital trend 2020 report, 20% of marketers say capitalizing on customer experience is the most exciting opportunity for their organization.
However, is it possible to apply traditional CX efforts to any complex stakeholder organization, for instance, a free-trade zone or even a city? That’s where “the Meta Customer Experience (MCX)” comes into play.
“Is it possible to apply traditional CX efforts to a free-trade zone or even a city? That’s where “the Meta Customer Experience (MCX)” comes into play.”
Meta comes from Greek, meaning “across, beyond, a higher kind.” Consequently, the meta customer experience (MCX) is a large-scale customer experience effort that is more complex and sophisticated than traditional CX. It integrates multiple customer experience efforts into one meta-level customer experience. The MCX encapsulates broader segments, brand promises, values, experience principles, infinitive touchpoints, diverse offerings, and an extended duration of customer interactions compared to the traditional customer experience.
THE MCX IS A DISCIPLINE RATHER THAN A PROGRAM.
Let’s consider the complexity of the experience that a potential real estate investor. Ramsey is a senior consultant, and his company assigns him to a three-month mandate in your city. He chooses to stay at a hotel managed by your organization. Having a pleasant experience, he decides to purchase one of your apartments. After a year of renting out, he finally settles into your community with his family.
As you see, Ramsey was first a visitor, then an investor, and finally a resident. That means he interacted with your community through retailers, mobility offerings, housing, community activities, public spaces, hospitals, regulators, etc. What we are talking about here is infinitely more complicated than simple customer experience, such as buying a coffee at a shop. Ramsey is going through a life journey. That requires a meta customer experience.
IMPLEMENTING MCX IS A TALL ORDER
To be honest, even the most customer-centric companies struggle to manage and sustain the CX efforts. So, how can you execute something as complex as the meta customer experience?
MCX takes a lot of time, but you can do it. Let’s dive deeper to identify the top three challenges of MCX and discuss how to overcome those.
Picture yourself as a meta CX leader managing a city-level tourist experience program. You are dealing with a complex-stakeholder organization that involves government agencies, vendors, partners, authorities, and businesses across the ecosystem. Each of those parties has responsibility throughout the tourist journey. Yet, they possibly have different cultural mindsets, behaviours, values, practices, awarding, and recognition mechanisms when it comes to the tourist experience.
One organization might focus on customer-centricity, whereas the other on financial growth. How do you unify two organizations with fundamentally different objectives and build a customer-centric culture? How do you orchestrate the delivery of the culture strategy, working with stakeholders across the ecosystem in a nurtured way?
The magnitude of culture-related topics is countless in the MCX, which requires a central cultural integration office. This function should contain representatives from each player in the ecosystem. It would orchestrate the cultural part of CX efforts such as training, hiring practices, stories, rituals, formal and informal awards to ensure people in the ecosystem deliver the desired customer experience because they want to, not because they feel forced.
Data and Insights and Measurement
Imagine yourself as the CX leader in the Dubai Mall. On average, 80 million visitors visit the Dubai Mall annually, interacting with over 1,300 retail vendors and 200+ food- and beverage outlets. Your job is to generate customer insights. How do you capture and cluster the insights from visitors? How do you prioritize the data and enable relevant business units to take action to improve the experience on time? What kind of measurement metrics do you use? How often do you distribute insights across the ecosystem?
First, you need to align with the leadership team to build and invest in data insights and a centralized measurement mechanism in the MCX. Then, you must take advantage of AI technologies that prioritize what matters the most for your target customers.
Jeanne Bliss, the godmother of customer experience and the author of several books, once said, “You cannot boil the ocean.” Once you know what matters the most, you can detect, prevent, generate insights, and empower the team on the ground to act on time to improve your customers’ experience. Otherwise, each business would work separately, collecting visitor feedback and drive actions in silos. That would sabotage the delivery of shared experience and fulfill the brand promise.
Finally, let’s assume that you are a CX leader responsible for a country-level investor experience program. There are countless people, organizations, and partners in your ecosystem. How do you unite their behaviours? How do you connect the silos? How do you enable people to act and deliver?
Establishing the MCX governance model requires an iterative and holistic approach to mobilize the ecosystem. Besides the top-down approach with senior leadership support, you also need a bottom-up approach with a commitment across the ecosystem. The governance should be layered and must be like a Swiss army knife that encapsulates different parts and functionality that serves into one unified goal — improve the life of your target customers.
TO IMPROVE YOUR CUSTOMER’S LIFE IS EVERYTHING
“To invent the airplane is nothing. To build one is something. But to fly is everything”, says Otto Lilienthal, the German pioneer of aviation. Likewise, to design a meta-level customer experience discipline (MCX) is easy, to implement it across the ecosystem is something, but make it to improve your customer’s life is everything.
“To invent the airplane is nothing. To build one is something. But to fly is everything.”
We have helped public and private organizations to design and implement both traditional and meta-level customer experience (MCX) programs, as well as uplifting internal capabilities to elevate and sustain.
August 17, 2020