Look to the financial services sector for how to do insight right

<a href="http://www.marketingweek.co.uk/analysis/essential-reads/the-customer-experience-top-100/4011709.article">First direct is number one in the latest list of the top 100 brands</a> in customer service excellence and it’s not the only financial services brand to rise in the rankings this year.

Mindi Chahal

The customer experience excellence report by Nunwood is now in its fifth year and provides insight into how some of the UK’s well known brands fair in customer experience.

It’s not often we can look to financial services to learn about doing right by customers but the sector seems to be shedding some of the negative consumer perceptions from the past.

The report sees the biggest rises in the list from brands such as Prudential, which moved 163 places, American Express up 123, Standard Life 109 and Aviva up 81 places.

The data used to create the top 100 brands by experience differs from rankings based on brand perception.

It surveys 7,500 UK consumers on over 250 brands that they have interacted with in the last six months so the research, therefore, gives a truer picture of customer views.

These views also show that supermarkets are experiencing the opposite to the financial sector as eight out of 11 brands have fallen in the rankings.

According to the report consumers noted that the helpfulness of store staff had a big impact on the experience.

The overall trend coming from the top 100 is that those that perform well do so because the brand can back up any claims it makes to consumers, whether it’s providing helpful staff, ensuring customer satisfaction or personalising the experience to treat customers as individuals.

Advertising and marketing has to match the experience and the incessant focus on price rather than experience is harming the grocery sector.

In fact, incoming Morrisons chairman Andrew Higginson believes supermarkets have been too focused on each other and not on the consumer

The relentless focus on customer service, in reality and in marketing, has pushed the financial sector up the rankings.

It is through consumer insight that marketers can learn what customers really think of the contact they have with their brands, which can be used to either improve or maintain customer service excellence.

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