You might think of customer experience as a synonym for brand positioning or brand experience. But Christine Mauro says it's much, much more. "In reality, customer experience is the result of how you implement your brand and how customers experience it across every touch point," she writes at MarketingProfs. So get ahead of your competition—you can bet they're developing customer experience strategies, too—with tips like these:

Start with convenient lines of communication. Give your customers the information they want, when they want, where they want it. Younger audiences might prefer interaction through mobile and social platforms; an older audience might prefer traditional venues like postal mail.

Facilitate desired outcomes. "If you want your customers to pay their bill on time, for example, make doing so as easy and as clear as possible," says Mauro. "If you want them to book a flight, don't bury that functionality three clicks down."

Personalize the experience. Remember: Customers know that you know what you know about them. And they rightly expect a certain degree of personalization. There's no excuse for the generic salutation Valued Customer or making them repeat personal information you already have.

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