Megan Neale, Co-Founder and COO at Limitless explores the relationship between GigCX and Customer Lifetime Value (CLV) and how it enables brands to re-think their approach to customer service.
This period of history will forever be defined by human disconnection. In its place, digital transformation initiatives have accelerated to keep up with the pace of change. Organisations have had to pivot, adopting their strategies in order to reach their Customer Lifetime Value (CLV) metrics which rely on empathy and support.
As a result, the relationship between gig customer experience (GigCX) and CLV has become intertwined, as companies strive to achieve that ‘human’ touch in a virtual world. To that end, customer loyalty can no longer be assumed as a given for brands, no matter how innovative or experimental the product on offer is. What really counts is the personal connection and relationship on offer. After all, determining customer lifetime value is all about estimating an entire future relationship with a customer – ‘relationship’ being the key word.
Experience first, product second
What many brands tend to forget is that AI – namely in the form of chatbots and other automated services – should be considered aids for the customer journey, as opposed to a replacement technology that only serves to alienate a customer.
Often with tens of other identical products on offer elsewhere, the customer experience is no longer just about the goods-monetary transaction but more about the value added experience. While AI chatbots aim to assist the customer journey, a fellow brand advocate, however, is more likely to resonate with other customers that experience a problem or query. In other terms, this is where the potential of GigCX can really be leveraged.
Customer Lifetime Value does not – and should not – concern special offers or loyalty discounts as it once did, but focus on customers getting value from the products or services and allowing them to feel heard by people who are empathetic with their responses. This can only be achieved when using human rather virtual agents. A customer making a specific query on a product function in relation to their own needs is unlikely to be successfully answered by an automated chatbot tool. Both context and understanding are essential for a genuine and useful exchange. Someone with a first-hand experience and reasoning skills will be able to give the most suitable response.
Influencing customer life cycles
An important part of supporting the customer experience is recognising the needs of the customer life cycle. Typically used to map every stage of the customer journey – from considering a product or service, to the purchasing stage and post-purchase offering – it was a model once thought as being able to predict the entire value of a customer relationship. As needs and customer demands become more complex, customer retention, loyalty and advocacy is harder to come by, and the customer lifecycle model – largely based on impersonal CRM data – can no longer map this out alone. It needs added context.
That said, GigCX tools can align closely with improved customer life cycle mapping. Used as one of the most accurate methods for achieving customer success, the personalised approach it offers enables better control of customer behaviour and outcome, navigating the exact customer experience and journey in line with their needs. What’s more, offering greater direct interaction with customers, brands are able to build a more detailed picture on their typical needs and expectations much better than any manual paper-based model could predict alone .
With GigCX, brands are able to react to customer needs in real time and give them what they really want to hear – not just a ‘best fit’ answer from an automated and impersonal AI tool or call centre agent who has been disconnected from the entire experience and query in question. With the buyer journey no longer linear, engaging with them on a closer and more personal level via gig agents will enable brands to better estimate a no longer predictable journey.
To that end, customer success is no longer just about the end customer who is satisfied with their product. Rather, it is about the next step in that journey – converting them into loyal brand fanatics who identify and wholly believe in the product and brand in question. GigCX offers the opportunity to mature satisfied customers beyond the ‘repeat purchaser’ stage and turn them into proactive ‘gig’ advocates themselves.
The GigCX model has brought a new type of brand advocacy that operates beyond word of mouth between friends and family. It is more influential and genuine, enabling a representative to truly sit right alongside the product, a brand’s ethos and goals. Therefore, if a brand is successful in using the gig model to extend the potential offered by a satisfied customer, they’ll be on their way to achieving an entire network of passionate advocates .
Out with the old
Intertwining the principles of both GigCX and customer lifetime value offers a real opportunity for brands to re-think how they approach customer service and communications. Some of the world’s leading brands, such as Unilever & Microsoft, are taking this first leap and are already achieving impressive new results. Putting the real customer at the forefront of customer experience operations will offer a vital new take on services brands can deliver .
About the Author
Megan Neale is Co-founder and COO of Limitless, a Gig CX platform powered by AI that is empowering people to earn money for providing brilliant customer service for brands they love. Megan is widely regarded as a thought leader in digital innovation for customer care. Her passion for “customer & client first” combined with her constant drive for innovation led her to co-found Limitless in 2016.