I’m often asked why I spend so much time talking about customer experience (CX) and helping companies improve their focus on being customer centric. I focus on it because it delivers a competitive advantage that will in turn deliver a financial return. I could go on with lots of concepts and theories to prove my point but instead I will share my recent experience with a company and industry that we have come to love to hate – Time Warner Cable and the Cable industry. I am certain that it is not surprising to that the cable industry has some of the worst NPS Scores among all other industries and according to NPS Benchmarks even worse than the airlines!
Although the scores haven’t necessarily improved, the shift to becoming customer centric has been dramatic over the last twelve months. Last week my internet was sporadically going in and out. I called customer service and as we went through the troubleshooting it was clear that we needed to have a technician visit. Shortly after setting the appointment I got an email with the confirmation for a next day appointment – on a Saturday – with a one-hour window. Saturday morning, I got a reminder email with the option to confirm or change my appointment – emergencies happen so giving me the option to change my appointment without having to call was a real delight. Within the email was a link that informed me of the technician that was assigned to perform the service and also showed me his truck on a map so that I could see in real-time where the technician was. I had time to sit back, have a cup of coffee and relax knowing when to expect him. What a big change from a couple of years ago when I would have cancelled all my Saturday plans!
Time Warner Cable recognized that they were not focused on the customer at all, changed their practices and are now apologizing on TV and other media channels for how bad they have treated us over the years.
Why do this? Well, the cable industry is under intense pressure – customers are cutting the cord and moving to digital sources for entertainment, content providers are trying to raise prices and finally their satellite competitors are getting gobbled up by competitors with deep pockets. Yes, but why focus on the customer? Simple… acquisition cost. What are the two cheapest customers to acquire? First – the customer you already have, and second a referral. I don’t know about you but I get tons of offers to switch my home internet but why go through all the hassle to switch when I pay a good price and have good service? And as for referrals, I know not everyone might want cable but we all sure need home internet… it’s not a luxury, it’s a basic need like water and electricity. So when I get asked about what internet I would get at home, I always say get cable. Not sure I would have said that a couple of years ago. Kudos Time Warner Cable.
It’s never too late to become customer-centric which is why we at The PocketSuite focus so much energy on it. Is your company focused on becoming customer-centric?