Customer service and advocacy

Drive customer attraction and loyalty by reimagining your service experience

Service organizations have recently dominated headlines for failing to meet basic customer expectations. In a recent survey, we found that 26% of consumers stopped using or buying from a business in the past year, citing poor customer service experiences as one of the top reasons why.

It’s time to rethink customer service and advocacy and the critical role they play in attracting and retaining customers. Companies that get service right can realize tangible benefits through cost optimization, attraction of new customers, and improved customer retention and lifetime value.

Find the right customer experience model for your business

Companies should approach service as an opportunity to create real connections, both by making technology feel more human and giving employees what they need to create better experiences. Customer advocacy also helps move service from process administration to a reflection of the known and anticipated behaviors of a customer. But getting service right often requires making hard choices about what role your organization is going to play. Recognizing that you can’t be everything to everyone, how do you decide what your service organization needs to be?

Customer service models fall on a continuum that ranges from transactional to concierge, with each model focused on driving a different set of outcomes and experiences. Defining your role in service starts by answering tough questions about what value you want to drive, how customer needs may differ by your products and services, and what resources are required to enable your service vision. Depending on your response, you’ll sit along a spectrum of service models that range from quick, frictionless transactions to in-depth advocacy and relationship building.

Recognizing there is no one “right” service model, and many businesses may fall somewhere along the continuum, the challenge lies in designing the service model that balances both your business and customer needs. That’s where our knowledgeable professionals can help.

Transform your customer service model to help attract customers

Companies can win by focusing on the values and capabilities that increase their customer attractiveness and advocacy. A service model transformation starts with key questions to help you understand your values, what your customers expect and your service capabilities.

You can’t be everything to everyone, which can force you to make difficult decisions on the service experience that you offer to your customers. The first step is to define your role in service by answering who you are as a company and how you distinguish yourself to your consumers. Use these needs to establish where you may fall on the service continuum and help define your service vision.

Evaluate what capabilities are required to help deliver your chosen service model. Identify which capabilities already exist in your organization and which ones should be built or obtained through new solutions or partnerships. This can allow you to prioritize the time and investment required to start delivering more value to your customers.

Rapidly develop and test new business capabilities that can provide the type of service you outlined. This is an iterative process that will likely require continuous monitoring and measuring of what works and what doesn’t. During this phase, it’s critical to select the key performance metrics to help track progress and identify quick wins that deliver value. Remain focused on how to best digitize your business processes and integrate industry-leading  technologies that can create a competitive advantage.

True transformation requires more than a technology investment. Identify the workforce and operating model changes required to help drive lasting change while also incentivizing the right employee behaviors. Capture customer and employee behavior and feedback along the way to continuously refine your service model.

Watch the replay of PwC's Customer Connections webcast

Attract to amaze: Evolving customer experience in an AI-driven world

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Keith Fengler

Customer Service and Channels Lead, PwC US

Nathan Meyer

Customer Service and Advocacy Transformation, Principal, PwC US

Matt Rupas

Customer Service and Advocacy Transformation, Director, PwC US

Elizabeth Carlson

Customer Service and Engagement Director, PwC US

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