15 Customer experience and customer service influencers you should be following

Here are the top 15 influencers to add to your social feeds.

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Social media is a wonderful thing. No matter where anyone is in the world, it allows their voices to be heard and gives you access to all these diverse opinions at once.

The problem is it’s like an orchestra trying to tune their instruments all at the same time. How does one single out the solo star? In the vast world of customer experience, how can one tell who the experts are? Who are the ones actually worth listening to?

We researched the top 15 customer experience and customer service influencers that are most worthy of your attention, so you don’t have to.

Don’t worry. You’re welcome.

See also: The customer experience 30 under 30

Jeanne Bliss, Customer Bliss

As a CX coach and practitioner, Jeanne has guided the leaders of Fortune 500 and Global 1000 companies since 1984 in their customer experience transformations. Her focus is uniting leaders to grow their businesses differently, to build a company immune to the competition, by improving customer experiences.

 A best-selling author who's written four books, Jeanne shares practical, actionable advice and CX frameworks to help C-suite leaders reshape their organisations for customer-driven growth.

Speaking is another passion of Jeanne’s. As a keynote speaker, she shares insights, case studies, and action items to engage audiences and help move companies from talk to action. Clients include Intuit, Pella Windows, Staples, Activision, MetLife and Zappos.

And as host of the podcast, The Chief Customer Officer Human Duct Tape Show, Jeanne speaks to CX leaders from major organisations all over the world about implementing CX strategies and reshaping their business model to put the customer first.

Colin Shaw, Beyond Philosophy LLC

Colin is recognised as a world thought leader in customer experience. LinkedIn has named him one of the world's ‘Top 150 Business Influencers’. Brand Quarterly voted Colin one of the 'Top 50 Marketing Thought Leaders Over 50' for the last two years in a row.

He is co-host of a highly successful podcast, The Intuitive Customer, an accomplished keynote conference speaker and renowned best-selling author. Additionally, Colin is CEO of CX consultancy and training organisation, Beyond Philosophy.

Read Colin’s articles:

The magic of Disney: The secret to its status as a CX leader

Do you know where your customer experience starts and stops?

Adam Toporek, CTS Service Solutions

Adam Toporek is an internationally recognised customer service expert, keynote speaker, and frontline trainer who helps organisations get results by thinking differently about customer service.

As the author of Be Your Customer's Hero, the founder of the popular Customers That Stick blog and the co-host of the Crack the Customer Code podcast, Adam regularly shares his customer experience and customer service insights with a global audience.

In addition to his customer experience work, Adam is an angel investor with an interest in entrepreneurs who disrupt the status quo through innovation.

Shep Hyken, Shepard Presentations, LLC

As a customer service expert and keynote speaker, Shep works with companies who want to build loyal relationships with their customers and employees. He is the New York Times and Wall Street Journal bestseller of The Amazement Revolution, The Cult of the Customer, The Loyal Customer, Moments of Magic and Amaze Every Customer Every Time.

In 1983 Shep founded Shepard Presentations and since then has worked with hundreds of companies and associations on their customer service and loyalty initiatives. Some of his clients include American Airlines, American Express and Aetna. And that's just some of the As!

In 2008, Shep was inducted into the National Speakers Association Hall of Fame for lifetime achievement in the professional speaking industry.

See also: 5 steps to improve customer service by making it personal

Bruce Temkin, Temkin Group

Bruce is a CX transformist, helping large organisations dramatically improve business results by changing how they deal with customers. As part of this focus, he helps brands improve their culture, strategy, marketing, interaction design, customer service and leadership practices.

 Bruce is also a creative experience designer and a fanatical student of business and human behaviour so he continues to research, examine and share insights about how organisations can improve their performance.

Flavio Martins, DigiCert, Inc.

Flavio is a global leader with a diversified background in customer support, customer experience, technical support and driving revenue from customer success operations. He is specialised in optimising customer support and call centres by translating problems into solutions and leading cross-functional teams in their execution.

Flavio’s specialties include customer experience strategy (design and implementation), process improvement (Six Sigma Green Belt), call centre operations and CX improvement, customer success and service analytics and customer loyalty frameworks and programmes. He has received multiple Service Industry Awards.

Barry Dalton, GSK

Barry is a customer experience strategy and CX technology leader with accomplishments in designing and implementing strategy and technology architecture across marketing, sales and service, with particular industry focus on consumer products, pharmaceuticals, retail and technology.

Barry is currently focussed on two areas. Firstly is the impact of the digital customer experience disruption, the next wave of emergent customer engagement channels and the value of unstructured voice of the customer (VOC) data in understanding customer behaviour and demand generation.  Secondly is the upheaval that digital engagement and collaboration is having on business leadership and organisational communication.

Annette Franz, CX Journey

Annette owns a boutique customer experience consulting firm that specialises in laying the groundwork required to establish a CX strategy that will drive culture transformation efforts.

Annette believes customer understanding along the customer experience journey is key to developing a strategy that allows both customers and businesses to achieve their desired outcomes. The employee experience and your culture cannot be an afterthought.

Read some of Annette’s articles:

Busting the myths around creating employee engagement

The future is now: take your customer data to the next level

Arie Goldshlager, The Fine Balance Consulting Group

Arie is an independent consultant focused on information-based marketing and sales, customer strategy, customer analytics, customer lifecycle management, customer loyalty, customer experience management, customer insight and innovation.

He develops customer strategy and customer analytics solutions, balancing the company, customer and frontline employee perspectives.

Bob Thompson, CustomerThink

Bob has two decades of experience in customer-facing roles, sales, technical support, consulting and executive positions and another 15 years in customer management consulting, research and online community development.

His goal is to harness the collective intelligence of customer-centric thought leaders, using a collaborative platform to help business leaders understand how to create mutually beneficial customer relationships.

Bob’s Hooked on Customers reveals the five habits of leading customer-centric firms. His other specialties include customer-centric business research, whitepapers and keynote speaking.

Download the agenda for the Customer Experience Management Interactive Conference

Aimee Lucas, Temkin Group

Aimee has over 18 years of experience improving service delivery and transforming customer experience through employee engagement and customer-centric process improvement initiatives. Her areas of expertise include market research, programme management, marketing, instructional design and training.

Aimee finds it important to drive change in a way that builds on the positive aspects of an organisation's culture and what it does well, while helping the company evolve so it can best serve its customers, employees and the broader markets and communities it is a part of.

See Also: A customer experience guide to chatbots

Lynn Hunsaker, ClearAction

Lynn’s career in the customer experience field began in 1991 as chair of a twelve country, six-division taskforce designing customer satisfaction methodology as a manager in the strategic planning department at then-Fortune-250ranked Sonoco Products.

Lynn led company-wide customer experience transformation during eleven years at Applied Materials as Voice of the Customer Manager, Customer Satisfaction Improvement Manager and Head of Corporate Quality.

A Customer Experience Professionals Association (CXPA) Board of Directors member, Lynn is listed as a top thought leader in customer experience, customer success and customer service by the CPA, Customer Value Creation International, CustomerThink, CustomerGauge, Global Gurus, Mindtouch, Onanalytica, SAP, Satmetrix and many others.

Ian Golding, CustomerThink

As a freelance customer experience consultant, Ian advises leading companies on CX strategy, measurement, improvement and employee advocacy techniques and solutions. He has worked across multiple industries, including retail, financial services, logistics, telecoms and pharmaceuticals and has deployed CX tools and methodologies all over the world.

An internationally renowned speaker and blogger on the subject of customer experience on ijgolding.com/blog, Ian also served on the inaugural board of Directors of the CXPA.

Ian's first book, Customer What, the honest and practical guide to customer experience, was published in April 2018.

Mike Wittenstein, StoryMiners

Mike has decades of experience helping leaders tackle tough, high-stakes problems around customer experience and more as a consultant, designer, coach and speaker. His company, StoryMiners, focuses on the idea of ‘Story as Strategy’.

The value of Mike’s work is estimated at over $1.6 billion. He is the world’s only working speaker, consultant, and experience designer to have earned the top designations in his chosen fields (CSP, CMC, CCXP). Mike works in English, Portuguese, Spanish, and gets by in Russian.

To conclude

What is remarkable about this list is the variety of approaches one can take to customer experience; from Mike Wittenstein who views the customer journey as a story to Jeanne Bliss who sees a great customer experience as actually improving the customer’s life. It is heartening to see the passion these experts have for their field and it is no wonder they made our list of top CX influencers to follow.

See also: What every company leader needs to know about CX in 2018