David Kirkpatrick

Infographic: Customer experience in the digital age

April 30th, 2013

For today’s MarketingSherpa blog post, we have an infographic from Kentico, “Customer Experience in the Digital Age.”

The research behind the infographic was an eight-question survey of 200 Internet users via SurveyMonkey in February 2013, and the survey was open to both consumer and B2B brand interactions.


Here are few data points on the surveyed Internet users:

The gender breakdown was 54% male and 46% female, and the age breakdown included …

  • 18-24 – 10%
  • 25-34 – 20%
  • 35-44 – 24%
  • 45-54 – 19%
  • 55-64 – 15%
  • 65-74 – 10%
  • Over 74 – 2%

To help put this infographic – and the research that went into the content – into context, I had the chance to interview Thom Robbins, Chief Evangelist, Kentico Software.



MarketingSherpa: What were some of the key findings?

Thom Robbins: Company websites were second (25%) behind word of mouth (28%) in weighing most heavily on impacting brand affinity. In-store experiences factored [at] 18%.

Perhaps most surprising was the discovery that only 7% of respondents felt their brand experience was affected by social networks such as Facebook or Twitter, but I think this may be misleading. People may be influenced by social media a lot more than they think they are, through both direct and indirect interactions.


MS: Did any results come as a surprise?

TR: Other than the small role social media seemed to have, which I think merely shows us it’s a channel still on the rise, I was most surprised to see that 69% of those surveyed said they were willing to give up personal data in exchange for more customized service.


MS: Were there any results that might inform future research, or uncovered data points that deserve/require a deeper dive into customer insights?

TR: Well, I thought it was very telling that 97% were ready to forgive poor service as long as the company offers up a quick response or correction.

It’s important for businesses to know that while mistakes will be made, in the age of social media, every single customer experience counts. You can’t afford [to have] anyone to walk away unhappy, and there’s really no excuse given how forgiving customers are as long as you respond quickly to complaints.

MS: What is the key learning marketers should take away from these data points? How can marketers use this information to improve their marketing efforts?

TR: I think we learned the biggest sin is to keep the customer waiting.

45% named wait times as their biggest customer complaint.

32% were most put off by unhelpful company reps. Bad experiences can also be blamed on inferior websites (9%) and too much email (9%).

But overall, with 56% saying they’re most likely to have meaningful brand interactions at the computer, I think our survey shows businesses need to do whatever they can to optimize the digital experience for customers.

This includes experimenting with emerging tools and making sure their websites and overall service is helpful, responsive and personalized.


MS: Do you have any forward-thinking ideas or opinions on the future of customer experience in the digital age?

TR: As we are seeing, every single experience is vital to the lifetime value of any customer.

The evolution of technology has only just begun to enhance this.

Today, we are seeing personalization becoming a mandatory component of customer experience. Moving forward, personalization will need to become predictive. This means marketing departments will need to understand, leverage and action the mounds of customer data being collected to create a unique behavior pattern.


Related Resources:

Social Media Marketing: 4 tips for developing a winning social media strategy

Social Media Marketing: Social metrics from “likes” to ROI

Online Privacy: Information from the EU and Capitol Hill

Marketing Data: Using predictive analytics to make sense of big data

Email Marketing: Two ways to add relevance, and why you must be correct

David Kirkpatrick

About David Kirkpatrick

David is a reporter for MarketingSherpa and has over twenty years of experience in business journalism, marketing and corporate communications. His published work includes newspaper, magazine and online journalism; website content; full-length ghosted nonfiction; marketing content; and short fiction. He served as producer for the business research horizontal at the original Office.com, regularly reporting on the world of marketing; covered a beat for D/FW TechBiz, a member of the American City Business Journals family; and he provided daily reporting for multiple LocalBusiness.com cities. David’s other media and corporate clients include: USA Today, Oxford Intelligence, GMAC, AOL, Business Development Outlook and C-Level Media, among many others.

Categories: Online Marketing Tags: , , , , ,

  1. April 30th, 2013 at 10:09 | #1

    Thank you for sharing such helpful information! I found it especially interesting that people were willing to give personal info if it would lead to a more customized experience – that says a lot.

  2. May 2nd, 2013 at 12:19 | #2

    I wondered what the results were going to say, as I’ve seen many self-serving social media surveys floating around. This survey very much matches what we are hearing, as well as what we’re seeing from established customer experience analysts.

    There is one discrepancy however, and it’s a small one. In all of our surveys, and nearly (I think all) of the analysts’ surveys, the top complaint is having to repeat information when transferred out of IVRs to a representative. Then queue/on hold time is second.

    Given the accuracy of your survey and your willingness to share unfiltered data, I’ll be returning to hear more from you! Great work!

  3. May 6th, 2013 at 13:08 | #3

    The survey data is interesting, as are the conclusions, but I find this blog post misleading for readers. Let’s start with the the survey sample: What do only 200 respondents and a response reference that could be consumer, b2b, or both? Kentico’s infographic under the banner “Social Media” shows 0% texting, 0% social networking, so no wonder just “7% of respondents felt their brand experience was affected by social networks such as Facebook or Twitter” and Thom Robbins decides this is “misleading.” If this was an 8-question survey, at least provide the questions. We definitely need more information on the methodology other than internet users via SurveyMonkey. This is a hot topic. But, sorry to say, I am disappointed at the reporting. It’s just not up to usual high MarketingSherpa standards.

  4. May 6th, 2013 at 17:19 | #4

    It is amazing how people believe that they are not being influenced by social media. Specifically in the retail industry social media has helped a lot to retailers to understand what their customers want, provide more information about their products and increase sales thanks to word of mouth.

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