Application: Customer Service, Customer Experience, Communication

The Concept

Several marketing-related concepts (CEM, brand integrity, the customer journey, touch-points, and moments of truth – see entry under service quality) put great emphasis on a customer’s experience of a supplier’s offer and distribution methods; the effect of interactions with the firm on the opinion of buyers and repurchase intent. This little idea is a practical method to understand the quality of these interfaces (see Figure C.4).

Figure C.4: A representation of a contact audit


Marketers should list all the firm’s interfaces with its customers. These range from sales and customer service employees, through operational materials (like contracts, statements, or invoices) to attendance at events. This, alone, prompts them to think about the effect of some surprising items. For instance, customers, who visit a scruffy office, are kept waiting by reception staff, or who have to negotiate difficult security staff, can have their confidence in the firm’s offer undermined, even if some of these people are clearly employed by contractors.

The tool then causes the firm to think about the frequency with which customers use a particular interface and the reason why. If it is very important or emotionally ...

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