Ways Startups are Winning in the Digital Customer Experience Economy

As a company, your customers are your lifeblood, and you are constantly being compared to the competition. Every time they interact with your brand, store, website, or app, it adds or subtracts from the total customer experience (CX). 

This experience can be the difference between happy customers that will return to do business with you and unhappy customers that won’t give you any repeat business, or worse, share their unpleasant experiences online.

Customer Experience In The Digital Economy

Consumers have come to expect nearly instant access to information and answers to their questions. They get frustrated when these expectations aren’t being met. In years past, that frustration might lead to telling a friend or two. Now they tell all of their social media “friends” and the voice gets amplified. 

45% of customers will share bad customer service experience. This can influence people that have never interacted with your company who might be interested in your product or service.

Bad customer experiences also show up in reviews. 90% of customers report reading online reviews before interacting with a business and impact as many as 67% of purchase decisions.

It works the other way as well. A positive customer experience gets shared. 30% share a good CX via social media. 

Beyond Customer Service

Don’t confuse customer service with customer experience. While the two are intertwined, the customer experience begins before they become a customer and can last long after the purchase.

In the classic marketing funnel, consumers move through stages. Startups are winning the CX battle by providing a superior customer experience at each stage. 

The AIDA Model, as it is called, has four distinct stages. 


This is when consumers first become aware of your product or service.


In this stage, consumers become interested in your product and begin their research.


Consumers start to develop an affinity for your product or service. As they move from liking something to wanting to purchase, they start to form an emotional connection.


It’s not until the 4th stage of the AIDA funnel that consumers take action. They may download information, sign up for a newsletter, contact you by live chat or phone, or make a purchase.

You can see that by ignoring the first three stages and only focusing on customer service at the point of sale or when there’s a problem, the cumulative customer experience may never lead them through the funnel to convert.

Today’s marketers typically add another stage to the classic AIDA funnel. It’s called retention or remarketing.


In this final phase, you are reinforcing the CX and starting to increase awareness of other products, services, or opportunities. If possible, you want to convince them to become brand advocates that will share their positive experiences and recruit others.

It Begins With Listening

Before you can deliver a great CX, you need to understand what customers want and expect from you. Only when you understand that can you figure out ways to exceed those expectations at each stage of the buyer’s journey.

This starts with listening to your customers. If asked, most won’t be shy about telling you how they really feel. You need to know the good, bad, and the ugly to identify opportunities to improve the CX. If there are problems, it gives you an opportunity to solve them for that specific customer as well as build solutions into your overall strategy. 

Listening can provide you a roadmap for where you need to improve.

Improving Communications

Startups that are providing superior customer experiences are focused on reducing friction points. It’s not just about listening, it is also crucial that you are listening where customers are communicating. 

This means an omni-channel approach. You need to deliver a consistent customer experience across voice, email, text, chat, and social media. If customers want to interact with you in any way, you need to be there.

Remember how they want instant access and answers? Parking someone on hold or transferring them to the wrong person creates negative customer experiences. These are just some of the communication channels and tools that every business should leverage to give customers a great customer experience. 

  • On-site Chat: Chatbots have become an incredible tools for businesses to engage with customers when support teams are not available. It’s also been shown to decrease support costs and increase customer satisfaction since answers can be given instantly. With that said, you should also have live agents who can take over chat sessions when they’re available or if the customer has a more complex problem. Chat solutions like LiveChat integrate with ChatBot to give you the best of both worlds.  
  • Phone: Customers still like to pick up the phone and call a company to get answers or inquire about a purchase. For international startups, this can pose a support problem due to time zone differences and routing calls to the appropriate department. Setting up separate virtual phone numbers for each market a brand sells in is a good way to properly route calls. For example, using a solution like Avoxi’s virtual phone number for the India market will automatically route call to the right support team when calls come in from that market. 
  • Social Media: Social media has become one of the main communication channels for customers to voice their satisfaction or dissatisfaction with a company. The double edged sword that companies face is that the rest of the world gets to see those comments online. This make it critical for brands to listen online for what their customers are saying and respond instantly when they are mentioned positively or negatively. Social listenting tools like Mention give customer experience teams the ability to engage with people as they talk about the brand across social channels. 

Creating a great customer experience isn’t just strategy and techniques but rather a culture that needs to be cultivated within a company. How you treat your customers will ultimately lead to a brands success or failure over time. Look for new and innovative ways to surprise and engage with your customers which ultimately will pay dividends in a more engaged and loyal customer base. 

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