The travel industry is experiential and indeed travel agents are there to engage with the customer and exceed their expectations. At the point of sale, the travel agent doesn’t sell a tangible product, they are selling an experience, a dream, they are selling high expectations. So the question is, does the travel agent do this well?
Why CX is so important in the Travel Industry
Understanding the customer is number one. It doesn’t matter what product you sell, if you are not selling it to the right person in the right way your not going to succeed.
Taking a look at the below Customer Experience aspirational map, we compare a simple process of making a change to an airfare online vs offline (email or phone). When breaking this process down in to a few stages and understanding it from the customers perspective, it allows you to identify where a process may not meet their expectations or actually deter your customer from using your services in the future.
This simple example showcases a function of CX, whereby we stop and consider the experience for the customer. The goal of course is to ensure the best experience is achieved with as little emotional input by the customer.
So where do you start measuring CX?
Often this is driven based on the problem you are trying to solve. You can look at a specific process of the experience or indeed the whole customer journey. But first, you need to understand who your customer is. A great place to kick of CX is creating multiple persona’s for your customer.
A customer persona, generally you will have a 2-5 different types of customers, allows you to get in to the mind of your customer. Finding what makes them tick, their focus, their pain and gain points. To start you can write down what you think your customer is, but it’s better to use some more tried and tested methods. These include using data if available to understand your customer segmentation and another great way is to conduct some user interviews with your current customers. You may be surprised how open your customer is to sharing some information about them once they understand of course the purpose and what you will do with the information. If its linked directly to the customer and their future experience, they will be happy to help.