ICC/Decision Services Launches Springboard Process Ensuring Successful, Results-Driven Customer Experience Programs
ICC/Decision Services, a NYC-based international Customer Experience Management company which counts many major North American retailers as clients, announces the launch of its Springboard Process today. Designed to provide the tools necessary for the successful launch and implementation of customer experience programs, the Springboard Process gives companies the confidence they need to embark on their customer experience programs.
“What gets measured gets done,” says Rich. And after years of observing many ineffective programs which resulted in frustration for agencies, brands and retailers and, in some cases, reluctance to start over without a structured process in place, ICC/Decision Services has created The Springboard Process to take the guess work out of launching critical customer experience programs such as shopper intercepts, secret shopping, retail audits, customer satisfaction and employee engagement surveys.
The process begins with an initial meeting where executives are introduced to their personal Customer Experience Team from ICC/DS Quality Assurance, IT and Account Management departments. The new team works together to establish goals, develop surveys and determine the proper frequency and sample sizes of tests to be conducted. The process continues as ICC/Decision Services runs test shops and reviews proposed programs before a full-scale launch. Customized Enterprise Reporting sites created for each client means data is delivered according to their needs and preferences.
“The Springboard Process assures that data gathered will lead to actionable results and provides real value,” says Rich. For more information about the Springboard Process and ICC/Decision Services visit www.iccds.com
About ICC/Decision Services
ICC/Decision Services was founded in 1979 to design and execute Customer Experience Management programs. ICC/Decision Services offers a wide range of qualitative and quantitative business tools, including mystery shopping, store audits, customer feedback and employee satisfaction surveys. Clients include Coach, 7-11, L.L. Bean, CVS, Foot Locker, Walmart and others. The company is headquartered at 561 7th Avenue New York, NY 10018, U.S.A. Phone: (800) 444-1717. E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Shopper Intercept Interviews solve all of the projectability problems of focus groups while still offering a customer-centered format that allows an interviewer to ask broad questions with direct follow-up questions that capture the most important and relevant concerns of your customer.
1. Providing Accurate Insights for Brands or Agencies
As you know, Scan Data produces an objective overview of your customers’ purchases, but it doesn’thelp you understand the “whys”: Why this particular product? Why this particular brand? Why this particular time to buy? Or even why did a consumer not purchase a particular item?
Because they are conducted face-to-face with your customers in real-time, Shopper Intercept Interviews allow you do a “deeper dive” that answers all of these questions and more. With Shopper Intercepts you are on the frontlines of your business and are given uncensored front-row access into the mindsof your customers that an on-line panel could never do.
Earlier this year, discount retailer Wal-Mart started selling the iPhone. Starting to surface is the discussion on whether or not Apple will expand it’s product line on the retail shelves of Wal-Mart. Considering Apple has established it’s brand as the innovative, upscale brand and Wal-Mart is the biggest discounter, the pairing brings up branding concerns. The first concern is how the match up will effect the Apple brand.
From the beginning, Apple has successful established it’s brand to be unique. Everything from the product’s innovative designs, accessories, and customer service reps, aka Apple Genius, reinforce the Apple brand. Wal-Mart’s brand is known for low price guarantee, something which is not typically associated with Apple. The iPhone’s arrival to
Wal-Mart’s shelves is one of the higher priced items carried by the retailer.
According the AppleInsider, there are rumors of Apple selling it’s lower priced items in Wal-Mart stores. You won’t see the MacBook Pro, but possible newer cheaper items such as the Mac Mini. A part of Apple’s branding is the use of their own retail storefront and the Apple Genius. It will be interesting to see how Wal-Mart’s displays and associates will extend the brand of Apple which is prevalent in their own stores.
Of course, the bigger question is whether or not extending the Apple line with Wal-Mart will hinder the Apple brand. There are ways Apple can ensure their brand is well represented at the retail shelves. Brand strategy measurement tools include:
1) Visual Merchandising Audits: Photos conducted by a third party auditor can provide Apple a visual quality check of POS marketing and product displays.
2) Shopper Intercept Interviews: Intercept interviews are a great way to find out how the consumer views the brand in the retail setting. Apple can find out whether or not sales associates are knowledgeable on product line and helpful in ensuring a positive shopping experience. The interviews can reveal whether the pricing and marketing is effective with the brand’s consumers.
Measuring the consumer attitude and the merchandising would help Apple determine whether or not it’s brand quality is represented on the shelves of any retail storefront.
What do you think about the Apple expanding it’s product line with Wal-Mart? Do you think pairing with a discount retailer hinder’s the brand?
There is a Harvard Business Review article entitled “The One Number You Need to Grow”. In it, the HBR teases us with the following nugget: “If growth is what you’re after, you won’t learn much from complex measurements of customer satisfaction or retention. You simply need to know what your customers tell their friends about you.”
The article’s author Frederick Reichheld tells the tale of a group of Fortune 500 executives at a customer service symposium swapping stories on what revs their customers’ engines and generates successful consumer loyalty. But CEO’s from high-profile brands like State Farm Insurance, Chick-a-Fil, Vanguard and others really pricked their ears up during a talk from Andy Taylor, the CEO of Enterprise Rent-a-Car, a talk that Reichheld describes as “riveting”.
According to Reichheld, Taylor and his senior team had figured out a way to measure and manage customer loyalty without the complexity of traditional customer surveys.
Good businesses are always measuring progress – - sometimes in the unlikeliest instances. Years ago, retail magnate Marshall Field was walking through the original store that bears his name in Chicago. In doing so, he overheard a clerk arguing with a customer.
He stopped and asked: “What are you doing?”
The clerk answered: “I’m settling a complaint.”
Field shot back: “No, you’re not. Give the lady what she wants.”
Marshall Field, a notorious “floorwalker” at his landmark store, was way ahead of his time. He knew that giving customers “what they want” is the heart and soul of any commercial enterprise. He also knew that the key to boosting both his company brand and his bottom line was by constantly measuring progress, not just as a customer service barometer, although that’s obviously critical to any company’s success.