Sunday, May 5, 2013

Total Experience Design – A New Model for Customer Experience

How does one create a great customer experience for their customers? What are the secrets of obtaining customers and keep them coming back? These are the questions that anyone that is involved with a business asks themselves, but may not be able to answer. Recently Al Nevarez from Allegiance recently visited the Web Analytics class at the University of Utah to provide insights on how to answer these questions.

What kind of company is Allegiance and what do they do?

According to Allegiance’s website, “Allegiance was formed in 2005 when SilentWhistle, an ethics compliance company founded by Adam Edmunds, merged with Allegiance Technologies, a provider of web-based feedback tools founded by Dr. Gary Rhoads. Since then, Allegiance has grown to become one of the leading providers of Enterprise Feedback Management solutions. In July 2009, Allegiance acquired Inquisite, an innovative provider of online survey software based in Austin, Texas.”
Allegiance also provides a company overview and describes their services, “The Allegiance Engage platform is a feedback system that continually collects and analyzes the voice of customers and employees. Engage has the unique capacity to collect feedback through multiple channels (email, Web, print, phone) and accumulate those responses in a central database for analysis and action.
The Engage technology platform encompasses a family of feedback solutions including customer loyalty and employee retention; we round out our service offerings with professional services, training and support. Allegiance experts help companies to select the best feedback channels, customize surveys, and execute a strategic action plan to yield measurable results.

Background on the ebook “Delivering Customer Intelligence”.

“Delivering Customer Intelligence” is an ebook compiled by Allegiance where industry experts share their own insight and experience in helping companies create a voice of the customer program. The book can be downloaded by accessing Allegiance’s website here. The book discusses topics such as the economic benefit of listening to customers, how to approach the customer experience, creating measurable outcomes, and gives several case studies of companies that have used the tools discussed in the book.
What is the Total Experience Design?
According to Al Nevarez, The Total Experience Design integrates functional, activity, and life needs with the right mix of basic, performance, and delight features. He writes that the “Total Experience Design model provides a simple yet comprehensive means of auditing your customer’s entire experience”. In the book “Delivering Customer Intelligence”, Al Nevarez suggests nine possible areas to analyze when addressing the experience of customers. He provides the following visual to better explain the Total Experience design:
You will notice that this model addresses the features that a customer is looking for. These features are noted as the basic features one expects from a service or product. Performance features considers any additional benefit above a basic feature, and delight feature looks at those characteristics that a customer would not necessarily expect in a product but enjoy having them. These features are then compared to the different types of needs such as Life, Activity, and Functional needs.

How would a company come to know what their customer’s needs are and what features to provide to their customers to fulfill these needs? Mr. Nevarez suggests a variety of different methods, but focuses on four key items. These include Design Thinking, Observing Customers in Another Industry, See Products as Verbs, and Buy Your Customers a Gift.

-Design Thinking is an approach to finding great ideas that focuses on five steps. These steps include Empathize > Define Problems & Opportunities > Brainstorm > Prototype > Test.
-Observing Customer in Another Industry suggests that Life Needs and Activity Needs are common to many people, that they can be identified in any industry. He says to always be listening to people no matter what the product is.
-See Products as Verbs helps one see any issues or opportunities that have not already been identified.
-Buy Your Customer a Gift encourages a company to listen and get to know their customers so that they may be comfortable in purchasing a gift that their customers would like. This requires a company to listen and truly know who their customer is.

As it becomes ever more competitive to attract and retain customers, it is imperative that we understand the needs and wants of these customers. Please visit for more advice on building a customer intelligence program.

Peppers, Don & Rogers, Martha. “Delivering Customer Intelligence” Allegiance 2012

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