The "two left shoes" syndrome: Don't let ill-fitting experiences make your customers stumble

Digital Marketing Lead, Public Services Sector, IBM Analytics

#CXO chat—March 3, 2014—12 p.m. EST & 5 p.m. GMT

If you’ve even seen a toddler playing dress up you know exactly what it looks like to wear two left shoes. Especially two different shoes in the wrong size! Yet this is what many companies do with their customers. Customers today expect intimacy. After all, they do give us all their data at every channel. Often when they call in they are prompted by the automated help to give their information…only to repeat themselves to the customer-facing professional. 

Toddlers grow up and learn their left foot from their right foot; they also learn to wear their size. Are companies today still wearing two left shoes when it comes to their customers? How can companies gain a better and more accurate understanding of their customer?

In our next #CXO Twitter chat, guest Jeannie Walters (@jeanniecw), CEO and Chief Customer Experience Investigator at 360Connext, along with James Kobielus (@jameskobielus) and Tracey Mustacchio (@tmustacchio), leads the conversation as we discuss "Two Left Shoes." Natasha Bishop (@Natasha_D_G) will be leading the chat using Twitter handle @IBMBigData and you can join easily using Twubs, where the hashtag #CXO is automatically appended to each tweet you send during the chat, streamlining the chat process.

Below are the questions we’ll be discussing as well as reference articles to help inspire the March 3 discussion at 12 p.m. EST/5 p.m. GMT. Join us!

#CXO chat discussion questions:

  1. How can organizations anticipate desires and engage potential customers when they’re still getting to know them?
  2. Personas may change according to channel. How do businesses adjust to customer preferences?
  3. What factors should businesses consider when personalizing the experience of global customers?
  4. How can businesses overcome the challenges of collecting, storing and using multi-channel customer data?
  5. How can businesses leverage customer data to personalize the digital experience and increase sales?
  6. How should businesses detect anomalies in customer behavior and preferences to find ill-fitting experiences?
  7. Can businesses accurately determine the specific drivers and messaging to reach the right customers at the right time with the right message?
  8. Customer demands change so frequently. How do businesses ensure they stay abreast of what experience fits the customer now?
  9. Would you define customer understanding an art or a science? Why?

#CXO chat reference articles:

#CXO Chat Guests:


Jeannie Walter (@jeanniecwis CEO & Chief Customer Experience Investigator at 360Connext. She is a customer experience speaker, writer and consultant with more than 15 years experience in assisting all types of companies, including Fortune 500. Jeannie’s specialties include in-depth customer experience evaluations, customer journey mapping, user experience analysis, and leading workshops and trainings. 

What is #CXO chat?

#CXO chat is a weekly conversation every Monday at 12 Noon EST/5 p.m. GMT, on Twitter. Each week we discuss a different customer experience optimization topic.

How do you join in?

If you use a Twitter client like Tweetdeck, HootSuite or Seesmic Desktop, create a search column for the term/hashtag "#CXO" and then, as we tweet with the #CXO hashtag, all tweets tagged with "#CXO" will show up in your column. You can also follow with Twubs ( and it automatically adds the #CXO hashtag.

How do you participate?

Just jump right in! Review the discussion questions posted to prepare your thoughts and answers. When the question is posed, begin your response with A1: for question 1, A2: for question 2, and so on. No answer is wrong! We look forward to seeing you at the #CXO water cooler hosted by @IBMBigData.

Follow the hashtag #CXO throughout the week for articles, facts and nuggets on customer experience optimization. You can also continue the discussion on LinkedIn in the Customer eXperience Optimization group on LinkedIn.