The Run Approach to Customer Experience

September 22, 2020

Joe Colletti, SVP Solutions

As mentioned in my previous article, The Crawl, Walk Run Approach to Customer Experience, I talked about the article I wrote in 2001 on how to use the crawl, walk and run analogy for CRM which at the time was the new technology focus. As I went back and revisited that article, I found most of the points still pertain to the new Customer Experience technologies that are in the market today. I posted another article discussing The Walk Approach to Customer Experience.

This article focuses on the final piece to the puzzle, stage three… Run.

Stage 3: Run. In the run stage, everything learned and accomplished in the crawl and walk stages will be leveraged and expanded upon. Initiate real-time personalization, proactive communication, as opposed to reactive and real-time data modeling and analysis. You will become integrated across all touch points of your organization -- front end and back end -- and speak with one voice to deliver the same brand message through all touch points. Your long-term goals will come to fruition as you will begin to understand your customers and your prospects, and how they behave. We have seen a high rate of success in this stage when this process is followed.

Returning to the vehicle analogy I have been using in these articles series, now that we have purchased the boat, we need to ensure the truck is ready for the long haul. This could include adding heavy-duty shocks, transmission cooler, the towing hitch, etc. Think for a moment about the time and money it would take to back everything up to the point where we decided on a truck instead of a car. And what if we never decided on what we wanted the vehicle for? There is no way we could have made it up to and through the run stage. We would have a CX implementation stalled somewhere in the walk stage, which many companies are currently dealing with.

The point is, we need to understand where we want to go in the crawl stage, in our "desire state." This allows us to follow a logical, step-by-step process that takes us to the point of meeting our objectives in the run phase.

Though I've been using the metaphor of building a car, I want to stress that CX is not about reaching a destination. It is a way of corporate life. It needs to be embedded in all aspects of the company and in every customer interaction. Yes, the run stage is a destination, but once you are running with CX, the system and the process must continually learn and evolve from one interaction to the next. Following the crawl-walk-run mentality to integrate CX and weaving a CX philosophy throughout your corporate culture will pay large dividends to your organization and your customers.