If there’s one thing that’s true for virtually every company across countless industries, it’s the importance of providing an exceptional customer experience. It doesn’t matter whether you’re a 10-person operation or a major corporation; companies need to do everything they can to attract and engage customers and stakeholders. They do this by providing a memorable—and unbeatable—customer experience.
What Is Customer Experience, and Why Is It So Important?
In broad terms, customer experience refers to a brand’s ongoing relationship with its customers. That can mean different things, depending on your industry, customer base, and other factors. All things considered, what is the best definition of customer experience? Take your pick!
- Customer Experience Definition (Gartner): “The customer’s perceptions and related feelings caused by the one-off and cumulative effect of interactions with a supplier’s employees, systems, channels or products.” (Source)
- Customer Experience Definition (McKinsey): “Everything an organization does to deliver superior experiences, value, and growth for customers.” (Source)
- Customer Experience Definition (Harvard Business Review): “The internal and subjective response customers have to any direct or indirect contact with a company.” (Source)
What each of these definitions has in common is the deliberate focus on holistic, end-to-end customer experience. It begins with the first touch and proceeds to building long-term loyalty and brand advocates in the process.
The importance of a great customer experience—for companies and their customers—is tough to overstate. Gartner research, for example, found that 81% of companies see customer experience as a competitive differentiator. And they’re almost certainly right since nearly three-quarters (73%) of customers identify customer experience among the factors influencing their buying decisions.
In other words, customers care about more than just transactions; they want to partner with businesses that actively work to engage with them and build meaningful relationships.
What Is a Customer Experience Center?
A customer experience center is an interactive space where customers and stakeholders are brought together for educational or collaborative purposes. There are three main types of customer experience centers, based on the type of space they use. A customer experience center can be designed:
- In a physical space, where customers come together and interact with the brand, and each other.
- In a virtual space, where remote participants can interact within a digital space.
- In a hybrid space, in which some customers meet in a physical space, but others join remotely—using a platform like Alleo’s.
It’s important to note that a customer experience center is as much an event as it is a place, meaning it’s about more than just getting everyone in a room (or digital environment) together. If you’re having trouble picturing what this might look like for your business, you can view a wide range of sample templates on our website.
What Are the Objectives of an Experience Center?
Customer experience centers offer companies an excellent opportunity to showcase their brand, have meaningful interactions, and give customers a chance to see what the brand is all about. Customer experience centers help companies to:
- Engage their customers by making them feel known and understood.
- Educate and inform key stakeholders.
- Derive insights from customer behavior to drive improvement.
- Provide interactive, collaborative opportunities for companies, customers, and stakeholders.
- Grow their brand by attracting new prospects and creating brand advocates.
What Makes a Great Customer Experience Center?
The best customer experience centers provide engaging and memorable experiences, not just a sales pitch or basic presentation. Those items have their place, but customer experience centers go further and put their customers’ and stakeholders’ interests first.
How Do I Create an Experience Center?
The keys to creating an exceptional customer experience center include:
- Identifying the right focus and objectives. Do you want to attract new customers? If so, interactive product demos and customer stories could be really impactful. Do you want to gather feedback from key stakeholders to inform future strategies? A collaborative discussion or roundtable would be meaningful.
- Building the right environment. As mentioned, customer experience centers can be in physical, digital, or hybrid spaces. Physical experience centers require a location with plenty of space, accommodations for technology, breakout rooms, and so on.
- Obtaining the right technology. For some, the idea of a digital or hybrid experience center might sound overwhelming, but it’s very doable with the right technology. Alleo offers a unique platform for creating a hybrid customer experience center. Think of it as a virtual visual canvas where you can bring together a variety of live content, media, data, and other interactive elements.
What Makes Alleo’s Solution Unique?
Alleo’s platform empowers companies to create a customer experience center that people will remember. Our versatile platform helps companies to:
- Drive inclusion and collaboration equity with an accessible and flexible platform.
- Drive productivity with customizable features to streamline and automate processes.
- Drive adoption with an intuitive, user-centric interface.
- Drive innovation with engaging experiences that elevate their brand story.
Depending on the main objective for your customer experience center, you can use Alleo for:
- Dynamic presentations and interactive webinars
- Interactive hybrid meetings
- Collaborative strategy and planning sessions
- Training and skills development
- Real-time, centralized dashboards