- Chew On This
- 🥗 4 Pages of Hard-Earned CX Lessons
🥗 4 Pages of Hard-Earned CX Lessons
Welcome back for another bite to chew on.
We hope you're having a great weekend thus far and are ready to crush this upcoming week.
In today's newsletter, we'll be talking about CX.
Because CX is one of those topics that are often left out of the conversation when it comes to retention and brand building.
It's seen more as a cost-center than a revenue-driver - and in our opinion, that's the wrong way to look at it.
Therefore - we'll try to systematically walk through the most common questions we either think ourselves or get asked when it comes to CX - in a Q&A-type of format
Btw - in case you missed it, we’re hosting an event in NYC this Thursday with over 150 founders. Click here to RSVP and join us for a great evening.
Without further ado - let’s dive straight into it!
Domestic vs. offshore
The first question that most brand founders (including ourselves) face when it comes to making the first CX hire is;
Should I hire domestically or offshore?
And this is actually a pretty complex topic.
Let's start with some context on the pros and cons.
✅Hiring offshore gives you access to highly skilled talent for a fraction of what it would cost to hire domestically (i.e. more margin)
✅Hiring offshore allows you to serve customers almost 24/7 because of the time differences
✅If you pay your offshore talent well - they will (potentially) work really hard for you to keep their job. The reason here is that $1000-$3000 is literally the salary of highly educated people (like PhD level) in most 3rd world countries.
We all know it's also not sunshine and rainbows.
❌Communication barriers can lead to significant losses in efficiency
❌Hiring offshore may require more management than US-equivalent workers, and therefore - there's a possibility to cancel out the incremental gain of hiring offshore (if you hire people who need a ton of management and support)
❌ Lack of cultural context and empathy can lead to damage to brand equity and, therefore… loss in LTV and profits.
So clearly… There are pros and cons to each.
And with almost everything in business, there's really no right or wrong answer - but only a right and a wrong answer for your business.
… but -
Here are our 2 cents on how to think through this based on our OWN experience of having done both.
At Obvi - we ONLY use domestic CX talent right now.
… and the reason behind it is based on two things;
A) We didn't feel like we had the right systems, processes, or even bandwidth to manage overseas talent.
We tried it for a while…
But we quickly realized that "hey - this requires much more energy and effort than people make it seem like"
The main reason for this is that we didn't have the right systems and processes in place to be able to effectively manage remote talent, let alone offshore remote talent.
When you're young and fast-moving, and every process is a big sh!t-show, proximity to the people working with you can act as a band-aid for Lack of processes and systems.
… and to a certain extent - you also need to prioritize which systems and processes you need to focus on building. If everything is important - then nothing is important.
Again - this doesn't mean that you can't hire remote or offshore talent to run your CX, but we'd definitely say it's harder to run it properly if you haven't established clear processes (which most early-stage brands haven't)
B) Risk of losing brand equity
We've poured hours into our branding and brand image.
We've poured tons of resources into acquiring our customers.
We've poured tons of resources into our post-purchase experience.
… and - after a few episodes where the offshore CX reps we were working with just completely dropped the ball - we were asking ourselves…
"Hmmm - is it worth it to save a little bit on the front-end (Cash Comp) - but lose a ton on the backend (LTV & Brand equity) , because of these recurring mistakes?"
The answer to that question was "No - not worth it"
Instead - what we chose to do was hire a (more expensive) CX rep who's fully immersed in our brand, works from our office, and knows our product better than we do.
Because our hypothesis was - that she would serve the customers better than someone who is not a part of the day-to-day of running the brand.
Thus far - we haven't been proven wrong, but maybe time will tell.
Anyway - those are our two cents on the matter.
What does a CX Leader look like in 2024?
The other day, Ronak was on a Mentor Pass call and got asked;
How do I hire a CX leader? What should I look for?
… and it made us(i.e him) pause and think for a second.
The first thought was that this is great content for my newsletter (we get most of our content ideas from Mentorpass calls)
And the second thought was that this will definitely change going into 2024 with the increased focus on AI and Automation.
Here's the list of qualities we would look for in a CX Leader if we were to hire one today
✅CX leaders need to be familiar with automation and AI on a semi-deep level
✅They need to be emphatic (so they can roll up their sleeves and do the damn job)
✅They need to be able to build the systems, processes, and infrastructure to build a team below them
✅They need to "get" the product fast. Preferably, they should be a user of the product - or someone who's been using the similar product (especially relevant for the supplements industry)
✅They need to be highly organized and be able to keep it together when shit hits the fan (for example, during BFCM…)
Rapid fire Q&A about CX
Following this Q&A type of format - let's address some other frequently asked questions about CX in eCommerce.
1. If you were to build your CX department from scratch - what would you focus on?
SOP's, systems, and hiring the best person you can find. If you have the right person in the right seat - the rest takes care of itself.
2. What tools do you use to run your CX function from
Gorgias - all day.
If you're still using Gmail… good luck with that. Or - in Twitter Lingo (You're NGMI)
3. Will AI take over the CX role?
No - we don't think so.
It may enable it and support it. It may make it more efficient.
But I don't think it'll completely take over:
Because - at the end of the day, some customers will crave the empathy that humans can offer.
Alright - that was it for this week's newsletter. We hope you found it valuable.
Please let us know if you would like us to do more of this Q&A-style newsletter. You can just reply to this email.
… now - onto the "Tool of The Week"
Tool of The Week
There are some tasks in eCommerce-land that are unsexy but super important.
… and then there are some tasks that are…
Just unsexy and not needle-moving AT ALL
Those are the tasks you need to get away from immediately.
One of those tasks is filing sales taxes.
We can't tell you the number of times we've heard eCommerce founders complain about sales tax turning their brains into mush - yet still spending hours and hours on it
Like… why would you when there are services like Numeral that basically do it for you?
For us… The business equivalent of "When I have enough money - I will get someone to do my ((Insert)) " is outsourcing sales taxes.
We don't understand it. We don't like to do it. And therefore - we refuse to do it
If you feel the same way as us - reach out to Numeral and get yourself a free sales tax audit.
Best case: They save you from a sales tax fine + save you time
Worst case: They save you time and mental capacity by doing your sales taxes for you
Thanks for reading along
As always - thanks for reading along.
We appreciate you and look forward to serving you again on Wednesday
All the best
Ron & Ash