How did it get to be August already?
Admittedly, going away for two weeks of vacation in July hit my fast-forward button. But even so, memories of our Customer Experience Forum East in New York in June are still fresh in my mind.
If you were also at CX East, here's a reminder of what happened on Day One. And if you weren't there, here's a preview of the types of things you'll see at our Customer Experience West in Anaheim November 6th and 7th and our Customer Experience Forum EMEA in London on November 17th and 18th.
Before the event we surveyed our attendees. That let me open the forum by summarizing their challenge: Although their executives' high aspirations for customer experience do them credit, their success to date lags far behind their goals.
Megan Burns, Vice President and Principal Analyst, Forrester
Megan showed the surprising findings of a recent study on what drives a customer experience that results in customer loyalty. Guess what? For customers of most industries, emotions matter more--often far more--than whether a brand met their needs or he level of effort needed to get their needs met.
Stephen Cannon, President and CEO, Mercedes-Benz, USA
Steve built on the theme of emotional engagement as a way to create "the best or nothing" CX. He's taking the dealership experience from good to great by helping employees make emotional connections with the brand. His program isn't easy and it isn't cheap, but Mercedes is doing the work and making the investment because it's worth it.
Trust me: You're going to want to show this clip to your boss.
Nancy B. Clark, Senior Vice President, Head of Operational Excellence Organization, Verizon
Nancy is leading the charge to improve customer experience at Verizon. The list of CX innovations Nancy described is impressive. What's even more impressive is Verizon's sky high goal for customer experience: Change their customers' lives.
Ironically, her talk mirrored the audience survey data I used to kick off the event, but with one big exception: Based on the data from our Customer Experience Index, Verizon is closing in on their aspirations, unlike the majority of our attendees so far. Which, come to think of it, is why we invited her to talk.
We wrapped Day One with Steve Quirk of TD Ameritrade but I don't have video of him. That's a shame because based on our audience ratings he was a big hit. If you want to get a sense of what Steve talked about you can read my earlier blog post about him here.
Stay tuned for a video recap of Day Two, coming soon!
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About the Author: Harley Manning is a vice president and research director at Forrester Research serving Customer Experience professionals. He blogs at http://blogs.forrester.com/harley_manning and tweets at @hmanning