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Ten CMO Insights on Customer Experience Adoption

Since the term “customer experience” was first popularized by Steve Haeckel and Lou Carbone in a 1994 Harvard Business Review article entitled “Engineering Customer Experiences”, the promotion and practice of customer experience (CX) management has become increasingly widespread.  In fact, the worldwide market for customer experience management software and services is projected to nearly double from $7.8 billion in 2019 to $14.5 billion by 2024, an average growth rate of over 13% per year.

Despite the torrid pace of CX software and services growth, the progress and impact of customer experience investments are often less clear at the organization level.   To provide insight on the adoption and progress of customer experience efforts, our firm conducted in-depth interviews with ten Chief Marketing/Experience Officers at large organizations in the Healthcare, Retail and B2B Services sectors.  Each interview addressed the scope and structure of customer experience efforts, as well as key business objectives, challenges and untapped opportunities.

Our Top Ten findings from these interviews include the following:

  1. Customer Experience is an Emerging Specialization within Marketing
  2. CX Hasn’t Always Been a Marketing Discipline
  3. Customer Feedback is Common, but Full CX Implementation is Rare
  4. Full CX Adoption in Healthcare is Slow and Inconsistent
  5. ECommerce and Direct-to-Consumer Selling Have Accelerated CX Adoption Retail
  6. B2B Services Seem to Lag Other Sectors in Adoption of CX
  7. Most CX Investments Are Not Linked to Financial Results
  8. Many Are Struggling to Align CX Efforts Across Silos
  9. Recruiting & Retaining Employees is a Top CX Challenge
  10. Many Burning CX Questions & Challenges Remain Unresolved

Selected highlights and CMO Quotes:

1. Among the CMOs and CXOs interviewed, customer experience management is most often emerging as an area of specialization within the marketing function, often closely tied to market research or insights functions.

2. Though some organizations previously addressed CX through their service or operations functions, several have recently shifted responsibility for CX to marketing.

3. Nearly all organizations interviewed have at least a basic customer feedback program in
place, but few are engaged in organization-wide CX management.

For more detailed insights and CMO quotes, download our full CX Adoption Research report here.