Electronic Retailer - February 2012 - (Page 50)

BY YOLANDA COLEMAN KOKAYI Are You Delivering a Great Customer Experience? CHANNEL CROSSING: FULFILLMENT The customer experience: It has become more than just an industry term. It is what some would argue inspires brand loyalty. As marketers strive to build and grow their brands, delivering a great customer experience is mission critical. Consumers today hold their brands to a high standard. Every touch point within the customer experience must exceed their expectations. The Customer Journey In the DRTV world, we often hear about the lifecycle and journey of a product from concept to creation. But what about the customer journey? How does the customer experience your brand when they call to place an order? What about when they finally receive their much anticipated package? Companies that approach customer satisfaction by confining the customer experience to the product alone, overlooking after-sale services such as packaging and accurate shipping run the risk of damaging their brand value. After a customer has taken the time to respond to the call to action and placed the order, only to have the box arrive late, poorly packaged and containing the wrong item, does not make for a happy customer. With the power of Twitter, Facebook and blogging, a single consumer’s point of view can go viral in a matter of minutes. Managing brand impressions at every stage has never been tougher. After marketers have worked to develop a product and invested in marketing and promotions, there comes a point when the baton is passed. Brand marketers now have to rely on their fulfillment partner for the last mile. Order processing, how customers are informed of order/return status, save the sale efforts and how complaints are handled are all critical processes that impact the perceived quality of a customer’s brand experience. So how do marketers ensure they are really delivering a great customer experience? Pay attention to the back end details. Fulfilling Expectations Creating consumer loyalty must be a core value of a fulfillment partner. Quality has to be more than a slogan on a banner inside the warehouse. This is the last leg and consumers expect excellence. Marketers can ensure delivery of a great customer experience on the back end by working with their fulfillment partner to ensure that there is: • A commitment to quality from senior management • A documented quality assurance process • A commitment to investing in technology • A system of training and testing employees • A system that operates based on the marketer’s business rules • Internal and external auditing • A system for improvement implementation • A feedback communication loop to clients The result: a great customer experience delivered right to your customer’s front door. Yolanda Coleman Kokayi is the marketing manager of Innotrac. Yolanda can be reached at (678) 4598425 or ykokayi@innotrac.com When the Product Leaves Your Hands Today, teams of organizations partner to deliver products to the end customer hoping to create brand loyalists and eventually brand advocates. It is a huge multi-faceted process with several details to consider. But in the mind of the customer, the most important thing is getting the right product as soon as possible and in perfect condition. Companies that approach customer satisfaction by confining the customer experience to the product alone, overlooking after-sale services such as packaging and accurate shipping run the risk of damaging their brand value. 50 electronicRETAILER | February 2012 http://www.electronicretailermag.com

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Electronic Retailer - February 2012

Calendar of Events - Upcoming Industry Events February through May
Your Association, Your Bottom Line
Industry Reports - Connect, Collaborate and Discover with MyERA
FTC Forum - Where the FTC Says Facebook Went Wrong
eMarketer Research - Who is the U.S. Hispanic Market?
IMS Retail Rankings - The Top 25 Shows and Spots
Jordan Whitney’s Top Categories - The Top 5 Shows and Spots and the Top 3 Categories
Lockard & Wechsler’s Clearance & Price Index - Index for 30, 60 and 120 Seconds
Ask the Expert - Who Says Kids’ Products Don’t Sell on DRTV?
From the Executive’s Desk - Create the Complete Package
DR Disruption
Bienvenido a Miami!
Interactive TV: Just a Click Away
What Your Consumer Says About You Matters
Guest Viewpoint - For Hispanic Vote, the Campaign is On
Guest Viewpoint - Own Your Own Online Media
DRTV - Supporting Retail: Is This the Answer?
Fulfillment - Are You Delivering a Great Customer Experience?
Teleservices - Stop Losing Thousands of Leads
Member Spotlight
Advertiser Spotlight - Highlighting This Month’s Advertisers
Bulletin Board - DG and Discovery Launch Digital Distribution System
Advertiser Index
Rick Petry - MINI Me

Electronic Retailer - February 2012