Sunday, June 27, 2010

If I were CXO (part 1)

This is the first in an experimental series of entries. I am going to pick 10 different companies and explain what I would do if I were hired as the CXO (Chief Experience Officer). I don't know if I'll continue just yet, but I'm willing to give it a shot to see how it works out.

First off, my favorite company to hate, and a frequent bash victim of this blog - Blockbuster.

Discarding the fact that I would more than likely turn down an offer by a company that is doomed to be out of business before 2020 and is squarely opposite in orientation to my principles, this is what I would do...
  1. Start with why - Refocus the company from making short-term revenue to one of providing truly great in-home entertainment experiences
  2. Apologize with a megaphone - Blockbuster recently reinstated the dumb tax and is once again collecting late fees. This action speaks to the fact that Blockbuster exists to make money first and foremost and does not exist to be of preeminent value to people seeking home entertainment. I would immediately and publicly apologize for this misstep, remove the late fee policy and explain how it is antithetical to Blockbusters fundamental reason for being.
  3. Make amends - Just like a past entry in this blog points out, apologies without genuine gestures that show contrition are platitudes and ultimately contemptuous. I would refund each and every late fee collected since the reinstatement in the form of store credit.
  4. Catch-up - Partner with a hardware retailer (Microsoft, Nintendo, Sony, or possibly Tivo) to get downloadable movies off of computers and onto the television.
  5. Fix the in-store experience:
    • The lines are too long and picking a movie from the shelves is too time consuming. Put kiosks in the store for help selecting movies and checking out.
    • Stop yelling "Welcome to Blockbuster" as customers walk in.
    • Upgrade the POS and peripherals (scanner, printer and signature pad) along with the couponing process that barely work, waste paper and power and serve to commoditize the offering.
    • Unify all the CRM systems to enable promotions to be applied and tracked without the use of paper
    • Enable "return to any store"
  6. Fix the multi-channel experience - starting with quantitative and qualitative user research search for opportunities to ultimately improve customers in-home entertainment lives and execute on those that align with the overall brand proposition.
  7. Expand the reach - Put vending kiosks or mini-stores into airports and other locations where impulse meets opportunity. It is critical to integrate these with the overall CRM system and "return to any store" policy in order to drive the sense that Blockbuster exists to serve it's customers in the way that will most fit into their busy lives.

My "If I were CXO" experiment - Like it. I Think I'll do it again.

Current customer experience at Blockbuster - Garbage

"No, no, no, Lisa. If adults don't like their jobs, they don't go on strike. They just go in every day and do it really half-assed. That's the American Way." - Homer Simpson

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