Andrew Swan, Senior Business Intelligence Executive at top global law firm, White & Case, shares insight on B2B customer experience and the role of data in managing client relationships. Julia and Andrew discuss the intersection between data and team culture, and how to keep the marketing team from getting too “creepy” with their info gathering. Julia shares some exciting news about the podcast.
B2B vs. B2C customer experience
Customer experience is the next competitive battlefield. By now, most organizations have realized that customer experience is no longer a nice-to-have, but rather a critical component of any brand’s long term viability. This realization has been slightly slower to arrive in the B2B realm, but that doesn’t mean it’s any less important. Increasingly, consumers expect easy, seamless experiences, and these expectations are carried over into their professional lives as well.
As a CX practitioner, I am often asked my my clients about the difference between customer experience management in a B2B setting vs. a B2C setting. The short answer is that the basic fundamentals are quite similar, with the key distinction that in a B2B context the “consumer” is actually a village of stakeholders rather than an individual. This creates an added layer of complexity for organizations that provide enterprise-level products and services, but it is by no means insurmountable. B2B brands teh world over are addressing this, and I had the opportunity to explore one such example with Andrew Swan.
CX in the professional services sector
Andrew leads the business intelligence team for the leading global law firm White & Case. His responsibilities include helping the business strengthen and improve its client relationships through data and insights. When we think of legal services, we often think of a personalized relationship with a trusted advisor, one that is built on face to face interaction. At first glance it might seem like the legal industry (or really any professional services firm) would be a data-poor environment, but that is definitely not the case. Over time, White & Case has built a framework for gathering insights about client experience and turning these into ongoing improvements to their client journey.
Insight + context = client journey improvements
As is the best practice in B2C CX, Andrew and his team consolidate insights from multiple sources to create a comprehensive view of experiences withing various client segments. This includes things like findings from client satisfaction interviews, CRM touch point tracking and external economic sector performance. The marketing and BI teams share these findings with the firm’s legal practitioners on a regular basis to explore ways that they can improve the client journey. Insights from this process have led to enhancement to their client pitch presentations and many other aspects of client experience. This dedication to B2B customer experience embodies their one firm partnership approach, which has served to strengthen relationships and trust between the firm’s legal practitioners and their clients.
Data and culture
Data is a key enabler of customer experience, but customer experience insights are just data points in a report unless you do something with the findings. Given that White & Case is a legal services firm with expert practitioners in offices around the globe, the organization has a focused on embedding its client service principles in all aspects of the business. As I covered during my interview with the head of Customer Experience at Airbnb, when a brand focuses on creating an authentic culture that is founded in a central set of values, it unlocks the potential for CX agility.
When an organizational leadership team has peace of mind that individuals within the business are acting in the interest of the brand’s mission, it frees them from the burden of micromanaging customer journey evolution. This doesn’t happen overnight, and White & Case has had 117 years to get things right. But their ongoing focus on client service principles means that kernels of data originating from Andrew’s team have a much better chance of turning into client journey improvements.
This episode was sponsored by CX University, a CX training company offering a broad array of CX learning options, including e-learning modules and CCXP practice exams. CXU is an accredited resource and training provider and their resources and they offer a flexible and affordable monthly subscription model. Listeners of this CX podcast can get 10% off their first month’s subscription by entering the discount code PODCAST10 at checkout.
Decoding the Customer is a series of customer experience podcasts created and produced by Julia Ahlfeldt, CCXP. Julia is a customer experience strategist, speaker and business advisor. She is a Certified Customer Experience Professional and one of the top experts in customer experience management. To find out more about how Julia can help your business leverage insights and improve B2B customer engagement, check out her customer experience advisory consulting services or get in touch via email. To hear other episodes of Decoding the Customer, click here.