The race to monetize CX: What can you really do?

Published date: 05 Dec 2019

Forrester 2020 prediction: CX professionals who can prove the ROI of what they do face a strong job outlook, especially at the senior level.

Unfortunately, many of their counterparts who can’t tie experiences to dollars [rather than just NPS, C Sat, CES] will find themselves in the unemployment line.firing line.

As this dynamic plays out amid growing tension over economic uncertainty, the race to monetize CX will lead to triumph for some firms and disaster for others. Consider yourself warned. Harley Manning : Forrester 10/31/19


So, what are Forrester suggesting a CX lead do first, next and later?

Ask us here at TribeCX, a group of senior CX practitioners helping to drive CX change in multi-dollar businesses, any of our clients, or indeed any senior CX practitioner “How do you really link CX to $?”, we’ll say it’s imperative to focus on the ‘execution muscle’ of delivering results from CX within your organization with the use of sprints (highly focused efforts) to deliver proof points that can then be scaled, deployed and widely used across the business.

At a time of increased economic uncertainty, organizations need to acquire and retain customers, service them effectively and sell more to them. Product functions and features can be rapidly followed, the only real sustainable source of differentiation is to persistently and consistently deliver a purposefully designed valued experience that delivers on your brand.

Secure the hard evidence in your organization that CX = $ and you’ve a chance.

So, again what can CX leaders actually do? Firstly, recognize this is a serious problem. Secondly, accept you can’t outsource this problem. The organization needs to get exceptionally good at designing, deploying and optimizing CX – not just the CX team, but whole business. The rapidly agile ‘sprints’ provide an opportunity to develop the CX execution ‘muscle’ widely.

CX practitioners who have successfully delivered CX change understand the need to focus on results for the customer, colleagues and shareholders.

But, it’s not a simple question of CX=$.

Whilst that’s better than CX=NPS or CSat, CES or CX index, it only solves one element. At TribeCX we keep coaching our customers to have this triangulated view. It’s an honest conversation with acknowledgement that some of the things you need to prioritize for customers may be to the detriment of the shareholder and employee (or vice versa). It’s critical to call it out and make a deliberate decision. That’s HOW you can make decisions about what to prioritize, and that’s how you drive sustainable and repeated success from CX, and stay in your CX role.

Don’t tell your CFO, but the approach of small agile sprints, in learning how to drive $ from CX in our business, also significantly de-risks your CX program. This will likely accelerate it in comparison to an approach that relies on external consultants to do the lifting.

For sure, there’s a burst of activity when consultants are swarming in your business, but it’s not developing the practical ‘how CX = $’ skills. Pretty quickly – and typically this is within the first 12 months – the rapid, agile learning from a proof-points approach overtakes a consultant-led approach in terms of ROI and CFO’s tell us that breakeven comes faster and at a much lower risk. CFO’s and CX leaders conclude this approach means CX projects are more affordable and organizations can do more CX = $ projects.

So, back to the Forrester prediction: As this dynamic plays out amid growing tension over economic uncertainty, the race to monetize CX will lead to triumph for some firms and disaster for others. Consider yourself warned. Forrester 10/31/19

This really IS a race! Both against time and competitors but most of all, against leadership stakeholders switching focus to other priorities. THIS is where CX leaders need to focus in order to win the race, they need to build real belief that CX = $. Belief means leadership and stakeholders will prioritize based on facilitating CX and will more likely walk the talk. 

So, to be crystal clear, to win the race to monetize CX you need to:

  1. A strategic task: convince colleagues CX = $, focus on building belief
  2. A project task: champion 1 or 2 agile CX sprints to deliver proof points and in the process learn fast how CX = $ in your organization
  3. Keep all stakeholders (customers, colleagues, partners, shareholders) in mind

You’ll then start to build the body of evidence, secure champions (who’ve delivered CX=$) and have leadership exhibiting belief and showing they’re serious, which will translate into increased adoption of CX, as it’s proven to drive $.

Rather than Forrester saying “you’ve been warned”, at TribeCX we prefer asking CX leaders, “Are you up for this race and ready to invest the time and sweat with us to sprint to the first proof points?”