Why Culture Matters When Expanding your Business to Other Countries
In the United States alone, poor customer experiences result in an estimated $83 billion loss each year, and people are twice as likely to talk about a negative experience than they are a positive one. This increased the appetite for voice of customer programs. In fact, worldwide spending on customer experience (CX) technology is expected to reach $641 billion in 2022 (IDC). In the United States, the CX industry is expected to grow 15% annually from 2021 to 2028. And according to Gartner, an astonishing 90% of companies have a CXO or equivalent executive, compared to 65% of companies with a CXO in 2017. To put it simply, customers matter now more than ever and organizations across the world are accelerating the investment in putting them first.
When it comes to what companies focus on most when it comes to customer experience, it all depends on the culture. Here are two examples of how different customer expectations can be based on the region:
In some culture, personalization is more important than service.
According to the Asian Development Bank, by 2030 Asia will make up 43% of global consumer spending (US$32.9 trillion). With customer experience a central factor in which brands Asian consumers choose, organizations need to ensure that they are meeting expectations now if they want to thrive and grow moving forward. However, Asian companies rarely invest in customer service. According to a large-scale study by Economist, more than 50% of companies invest in customer service only after the development of their core product. That being said, Japan also has the highest percentage of automated services. From vending machine style ramen shops to automated kiosks for major transportation, Japanese are obsessed with replacing human labor with AI and robots. With Asian consumers being some of the most demanding in terms of personalization, companies that find the right approach to personalization are likely to reap significant rewards, including improved engagement, sales, and profitability.
In other cultures, customers are more concerned about their privacy.
According to Forrester, only 29% of European leaders agree CX is a high or critical business priority, compared to 44% in APAC and 38% in the US. Unlike most Asian countries, European countries mostly see their customers as invisible, meaning they never know when customers switch brands or even have a complaint about a product or service. American consumers complain more often when disappointed or dissatisfied with the quality of customer care services; moreover, approximately 50% of American consumers spread word to others of unsatisfactory customer service experiences received from brands. As opposed to that, only 27% of United Kingdom customers will openly publicize such bad service experiences. About 50% of British consumers switch to other competitive brands silently as a result of dissatisfactory customer service experiences; however, only roughly 44% of American consumers are found to silently change brands. With stricter privacy laws and consumers not as willing to share their data, leaders are prioritizing customer journey mapping and improving digital experiences to improve retention and brand loyalty.
Bottom Line: Regardless of Cultural Differences, Customer Experience Matters.
In the hype of products and services being personalized to the buyer or user, customer service should also step up its game no matter what country you are in. Understanding the culture and how to adapt is critical as you scale and expand your business into other countries. Already, too much customer insight remains locked in databases, and increasing that amount of unused knowledge will not help. VoC providers must continue to improve their capabilities for how data and insights can be conveyed in usable ways across client organizations.
Organizations that can successfully do that are increasing revenue. Gartner research recently discovered that collecting customer feedback can increase upselling and cross-selling success rates by 15% to 20%. The same report found that customer feedback can also help decrease the cost of retaining those buyers – as companies that actively engage in a voice of customer programs, spend 25% less on customer retention than those that don’t.
WWW.SPAILEYSOLUTIONS.COM The bottom line, it doesn't matter the culture or the location, companies that invest in Voice of Customer programs experience a much higher client retention, employee engagement and spend less on customer service. You need the right expertise to implement best practices when trying to gain a deeper understanding of what your customers really think. If you’re ready to start optimizing your survey data with VoC interviews, Spailey Solutions can help. When organizations put the customer first, they win. Get in touch with us today to learn more!