A Sneak Preview for our Upcoming 360˚ Club Event

E. Purcell   Author: Elizabeth Purcell, Club Director

Tim Wade is our guest speaker at the opening 360˚ Club evening of 2017.  Tim is a Managing Partner at Smith + Co, the Customer Experience Experts.  I tracked him down to get a sneak preview of what’s in store on the night…

The focus of the first 360˚ Club session of 2017 is why optimising the customer experience is such a priority this year.  As a consultant to leading brands like Canon, Estee Lauder and some exciting emerging Fin Techs, Tim has some interesting insights into the answer to this question. He’s promised to share some exciting examples from organisations that are doing it really well.

Tim explained: “Most companies can see why customer experience is important, and developing it can deliver a good return.  But Forbes has found that very few of them are doing it.  Only 1% of companies were rated as excellent by their customers.  So there is a huge gap between people understanding that customer experience is important and them actually delivering it.”

To begin to address this gap, Tim will be looking at not only why customer experience is important but how successful brands do it.

“We can start with the why, but it is the how that makes it come alive.  On the night, I’ll be sharing lots of interesting stories and examples about the how.”

Repositioning a Brand around Customer Experience

Before joining Smith + Co, Tim worked predominantly in marketing across a broad range of sectors including retail, telecoms, financial services and hospitality.  As European Marketing Director for the Best Western Hotel group, he led a team “doing very interesting things around repositioning the brand and truly focusing on the customer experience”.

The challenge for a diverse network of small independent hotels like Best Western was creating a sense of the brand identity across all 300 sites.  Tim’s repositioning project focused on celebrating the differences and allowing each hotel to express its personality.  This approach was something the internal audience could really buy in to, while at the same time having a big impact on the entire group’s brand awareness.

The project led to Best Western putting the customer experience at the heart of the hallmark experiences which identified and unified the brand.  And it is exactly this type of practical experience that Tim plans to share with the 360˚ Club.

An Important Source of Competitive Advantage

Tim explained: “It is well recognised now that customer experience is one of the key ways to define yourself and differentiate your brand.  Competitors copy products, and the space is so crowded that services can’t set you apart, so how you set yourself apart is creating those moments of delight that your customers will tell their friends about.”

A firm believer that the advocacy question is the key to both growth and competitive advantage, Tim says that having a 360˚ view of your customers is vital in this process.

“The 360˚ view is the key,” he says, “it’s a window to the design phase, the actions you take from that measurement are critical.  Having that 360˚ view of your customers allows you to gain the insight and that allows you to design better, more emotional and more memorable experiences for your customers.”

We’re looking forward to hearing more on Wednesday!

Its not too late to join the 360˚ Club on the 1st March, to reserve your place, or to enquire about our next club event please contact: elizabeth.purcell@360degreesclub.com

And as always, thank you to our club sponsor Oracle Netsuite, for their kind support.