Interview with Gary Magenta
What defines a great customer experience for you?
Customer experience (CX) is an organization’s unique fingerprint. It is the only thing that will set one company apart from the competition because any product or service can and often is knocked off. It is the only thing that cannot be duplicated. I’m a consumer and many of the products and services I shop for are drowning in a sea of sameness.
Competition is fierce. As such, CX is the differentiator that determines where I want to vote with my dollars. I base my decision on the emotional connection created during my journey, which is comprised of multiple touchpoints from the moment I identify a need until reflecting and evaluating the entire experience. For a company to win my loyalty they need to differentiate and create an emotional connection at every touchpoint whether that’s online or inline.
Is it possible customer loyalty is becoming outdated?
Customer loyalty is almost never determined when the customer experience runs smoothly—it doesn’t occur in the status quo. It happens in the fringes, when a step in the customer journey breaks down. The opportunity to build loyalty is at its best when a problem occurs and you fix it to your customer’s satisfaction. And it’s not becoming outdated.
In fact, because it can be difficult and painful for consumers to change their routines and buying habits, they want to remain loyal. Help them to do just that! However, if you really give them reason to try the competition, it is twice as hard to get them back. Customer loyalty never goes out of style; it’s the lifeline of every successful business.
Customer service employees and managers alike need to be attentive to the people around them. What tips would you give people who struggle with this?
Hire for attitude and desire, and train for skills. If you don’t like being a problem solver, if you don’t like to give your full attention to others in the spirit of service, then you shouldn’t be in the customer service industry. Organizations need to remember that the customer experience will never exceed the employ experience. Hire employees who love to deliver a great customer experience and give them a great employee experience along the way.
What goals drive you in your life and career?
I’m on a mission to help organizations deliver differentiated customer experiences through differentiated employee experiences and to help everyone understand the connection between the two. I believe in engaging people in the reasons why a disruptive customer experience is critical to the growth and success of an organization and how every individual—across the leadership, management and frontline levels—plays an essential role in delivering a differentiated CX in the marketplace.
Which of your achievements are you most proud of?
I’m at my best and happiest when I can inspire, motivate and help create a better employee and customer experience for my clients. I’m proud of the research, consulting and publications focused on customer experience that I’ve created to help my clients win in the marketplace and really believe that my success is my client’s success in delivering a differentiated employee and customer experience and winning in the marketplace.
How do audiences typically gain from your keynote presentations?
I work hard to create an keynote experience that allows the audience to have a great time while challenging their thinking—I use storytelling, humor and even music to fully engage participants in what I call “edutainment.” My goal is for people to have an experience they will remember and takeaway meaningful insights that help them further their business.
My audiences will gain the secrets to creating and delivering a differentiated CX. They’re going to have a great time, be challenged to think differently and takeaway valuable information they can act on.