If you're keeping up with the latest trends in customer experience measurement, then I'm sure you've heard that identifying and tracking your customers' emotions is important – vital, even. Recent CX research shows that emotion can influence a customer's behavior more than "effectiveness or ease," according to "How To Measure Emotion In Customer Experience" by Maxie Schmidt-Subramanian with Forrester.
Unfortunately, as the report further explains, measuring emotion is very difficult, particularly when relying only on traditional measurement methods, such as quantitative survey questions. Even planning on which emotions to measure is a chore! There are some straightforward feelings, probably those we learned to express very early on in our childhoods – happy, sad, mad – but then there are those underlying and complicated emotions that might not always be as easily explained – fulfilled, uncertain, eager. If we struggle to identify and discuss emotions even as intelligent and perceptive humans, how do we expect any sort of automation or measurement to capture that same understanding?
Well, unfortunately again, I'm still trying to figure that out, along with a big portion of CX professionals I'd assume. Naturally, I'm very interested in learning more about how we can use text analytics to identify some of the biggest, most impactful emotional experiences customers have (for the record, Forrester also suggests using open-ended, unstructured data to help with this process). We've already started playing around with an emotions model that covers some of the main touch points a customer can experience.
Speaking of touch points … I also think emotions pair quite nicely with journey mapping. After all, that's what journey mapping is, pretty much – identifying how a customer moves throughout a business and how they feel about each step in the process. Perhaps aligning our emotions measurements to the journey would be a great way to narrow down what to focus on. For example, do they feel anxiety or excitement when searching for a vendor? Are they frustrated or comforted when speaking to support, or when installing a product? Do their interactions with the company leave them smiling or shouting?
As I dig into this a little further, I think I'll be more discerning about which emotions to measure, and how they align with the whole customer journey. What about you? How do you plan to tackle this exciting challenge? Are you anxious and uncertain, or optimistic and fearless?