TechBytes with Katie Hickey, Marketing Manager, Usabilla

Katie Hickey

Katie Hickey
Marketing Manager, Usabilla

The Customer is a king; the experiences, priceless. The ever-growing importance of customer data platforms has led marketers to hunt for better data accuracy and quality so that they can improve omnichannel experiences. To better understand how marketing teams can optimize user feedback and refine their campaigns, we spoke to Usabilla’s Katie Hickey.

Tell us about your role at Usabilla and the team/technology you handle.

I am currently the US Marketing Manager for Usabilla, a voice of customer (VoC) solution that focuses on helping brands improve the performance of the digital and non-digital experiences of their customers. Usabilla is unique because it offers clients the ability to capture customers’ expectations, intentions, and brand perceptions to highlight the most pressing customer needs and to help understand the customer journey. From websites to mobile apps and even email, Usabilla’s technology is providing companies with intricate customer insights in real-time to improve their customers’ overall experience.

At Usabilla, how do you verify the authenticity of data?

VOC, in essence, is a panoramic view of the customer, for the most authentic data, we take into account multiple data sources covering the customer journey end to end.

Data accuracy and quality is of the utmost importance when it comes to customer data. After all, what good is that panoramic view of your customers if you can’t trust the data?

The most accurate customer data comes from multiple data sources. Additionally, data needs to be sourced in real time. Traditional surveys and focus groups show one part of the picture and are a lagging indicator. Collecting data at different stages of the customer journey will provide the most authentic data.

How do you define ‘Customer Experience’ at Usabilla?

The industry defines customer experience as how customers perceive their interactions with a company. But at Usabilla, customer experience is about understanding what matters most to your customer, and then working to continually improve it. It’s the practice of designing and reacting to customer interactions to meet or exceed their expectations.

We also don’t don’t think of customer experience in digital and non-digital categories, just like most global consumers. It’s about looking at how the digital and non-digital experiences complement each other and optimizing both.

What is the ‘State of Customer Experience’ in 2018?

2018 is really the year of the customer, in fact, more than 80% of consumers say they will switch to a different company as a result of poor customer service with only about a 50-50 chance of returning.

For industry-leading companies, the importance of customer experience in today’s marketplace is well-understood as a competitive differentiator. Many companies also recognize that, when executed well, customer service drives brand loyalty, business growth and reductions in cost.

Just as customers are becoming more digitally savvy, so too must the companies that serve them. To keep up, organizations must come to together to develop CX programs that garner deep customer insights beyond the typical email customer surveys.

How do modern marketers differentiate between UX and CX? How are these two interrelated in a mobile-first ecosystem?

Although UX and CX are different, they need to work in tandem to truly be successful. UX is reflective on the usability of a company’s digital channels, whereas CX focuses on customer interactions and meeting overall expectations. To succeed, it’s essential that brands not only know the differences between the two fields but understand how to address them individually. The ultimate goal is a website or app, that beautifully meshes the required elements of navigation and ease. From there, brands can find the balance needed to keep customers happy.

Why do marketers find it hard to attribute customer success to experience management?

Some marketers may find it difficult to attribute customer success to experience management because they’re failing to acknowledge the industry’s shift to a more customer-centric approach to marketing. Today, brands should focus on building a mutually beneficial relationship with customers.

When a customer feels like they’ve achieved their desired outcome with a company, it should be counted as a win for marketers. To achieve this, companies must develop strategic customer experience strategies that permit the collection and analyzation of elaborate customer insights.

How do you leverage AI/ML and data science at Usabilla? Which AI companies are you particularly interested in?

The team at Usabilla understands the voice of the customer and customer sentiment through AI. We are doing this with our own technology. It’s our goal to build and power an AI solution to not just better analyze the data, but truly understand the sentiments and emotions expressed in the conversations with the business.

By using Usabilla (AI) to access that vast amount of data, our data is becoming intelligent and we notice trends more quickly and are able to act on that. The analytics of our Voice of Customer gives my team the flexibility to view data in a way that we can harness the insights needed to improve our strategies and processes. This overview of trends can be dissected to granular topics and requests and the AI allows to view in context, geo-location, and customer profiles.

Thanks for chatting with us, Katie.
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