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  • Writer's pictureTamara McKenzie

EP19: The Balance of Value and Friction in Customer Experience with Craig Stoss

Today’s customers demand seamless, personalized experiences. This has made customer experience the centerpiece of business strategies across the globe. But how can businesses navigate the complex terrain of CX, balancing value delivery with customer friction? Enter Craig Stoss, the Director of CX Transformation Delivery at PartnerHero, who rejoins us on The Startup Smoothie to bring a fresh perspective on the matter with his value-friction framework.

In the recent podcast episode titled "The Balance of Value and Friction in Customer Experience with Craig Stoss", Craig discussed the intricate balance between value and friction that customers encounter when interacting with a company. His value-friction framework encourages CX leaders to adopt a more comprehensive outlook when enhancing the customer experience.

The Value-Friction Framework: A Comprehensive Approach

Stoss’ value-friction framework is built around the idea that customers seek value when they interact with a company, balanced against the amount of friction they experience during this interaction. A key factor to consider here is that metrics such as first response time can create a ripple effect on customer experience. The framework challenges the traditional team performance based metrics and compels us to measure customer experience based on the friction involved in their journey. This perspective introduces a whole new dimension to customer experience, offering invaluable insights to CX leaders.

Leveraging Technology for CX Transformation

The episode also highlighted the intersection of technology and customer experience. AI, in particular, can revolutionize customer interactions by providing contextual depth in conversations and significantly reducing handle times. Understanding customer sentiment and context can be a game-changer in preventing customer frustrations and enhancing the overall customer experience. Moreover, tracking customer journey touchpoints and involving customers in setting priorities has proven to beneficial for some organizations.

The Power of Personalization and On-Demand Services

In the final segment of the podcast, Stoss discussed the realm of personalization and on-demand services. He explained how AI and other technologies can be harnessed to meet consumer expectations and radically reduce customer frustration. Offering customers choices in handling issues and analyzing customer behaviors and preferences can help identify areas ripe for improvement.

In a world where customer expectations are constantly evolving, mastering customer experience is no easy feat. Stoss’ value-friction framework presents a novel way to evaluate and enhance customer interactions. By understanding the balance between value and friction, businesses can provide an unmatched customer experience, thereby gaining a competitive edge. The episode served as a reminder that focusing on performance metrics alone is not enough. It is essential to incorporate customer feedback into these metrics and bridge the gap between performance and customer experience.

For a further comprehensive exploration of Craig's value-friction framework, checkout his recent article titled: We Are All Measuring Customer Experience Wrong.


(0:00:01) - Introduction and explanation of the Value-Friction Framework in customer experience metrics.

(0:11:48) - Discussing how to improve customer experience and value conversations using Craig Stoss' Value-Friction Framework.

(0:17:49) - How to optimize customer experience and reduce friction through the use of technology.

(0:28:26) - An in-depth look into improving customer experience through analysis.

(0:38:47) - Discussing how to improve customer experience with value and how to reduce friction in customer interactions.

(0:46:14) - Importance of personalization and on-demand services in improving customer experience.


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