10 Customer Experience Books every CXO should read

It’s World Book Day today and we can’t wait to share some of the most interesting reads by customer experience experts. So, pull up a chair, switch on your reading lamp and settle in with one of these hand-picked customer experience (CX) books.

Our updated reading list covers well-known experts in the field whom we love to follow and quote. Its everything CXOs, and aspiring CXO’s need to stay inspired and informed. We’ve listed the books in no particular order, we think they’re all just as brilliant. Here goes:

Customer Understanding: Three ways to put ‘customer’ in Customer experience” (and at the heart of your business) by Annette Franz

This book drives home the importance of Customer Experience and gives business a roadmap for achieving it. Based on the simple principle of “putting your customer at the heart of everything” it covers three approaches to customer understanding: surveys and data, personas, and journey mapping.

The author Annette Franz is an internationally recognized customer experience thought leader, coach, consultant, and speaker. She is Vice Chair of the CXPA Board of Directors and is an official member of the Forbes Coaches Council.

Shep Hyken’s The Amazement Revolution: Seven Customer Service Strategies to Create an Amazing Customer (and Employee) Experience

Hyken believes that customer service isn’t a department—it’s a philosophy that includes every person and aspect of the best and brightest companies. In this sequel to the bestseller The Cult of the Customer, Shep Hyken delivers seven powerful strategies that any organization can implement to create greater customer and employee loyalty.

Shep Hyken, CSP, CPAE is the Chief Amazement Officer at Shepard Presentations. As a speaker and author, Shep works with companies and organizations who want to build loyal relationships with their customers and employees. His articles have been read in hundreds of publications, and he is the New York Times, Wall Street Journal and USA Today bestselling business author of “Moments of Magic”.

Winning at Social Customer Care: How Top Brands Create Engaging Experiences on Social Media by Dan Gingiss

Social media has changed customer service forever. It has shifted power from brands to consumers, requiring a different way of thinking about customer engagement. Dan Gingiss has interviewed dozens of business leaders on his podcast, Focus on Customer Service. From those conversations and his own real-world experience at multiple Fortune 300 companies, Gingiss has developed a series of best practices called “8 Steps to Winning at Social Customer Care.”

Gingiss was named one of the “30 Most Influential People in Social Customer Service” by Conversocial, one of the “Top 15 NPS and Customer Service Thought Leaders to Follow in 2017” by CustomerGauge, one of the “Top 10 Service Cloud Influencers” by Traackr, and one of “30 Influencers That Drive Social Media for the Brands We Love” by Leadtail and Purematter.

Chief Customer Officer 2.0: How to Build Your Customer-Driven Growth Engine by Jeanne Bliss

A passionate customer experience practitioner, Jeanne Bliss pioneered the role of the Chief Customer Officer, holding the first ever CCO role for over 20 years at Lands’ End, Microsoft, Coldwell Banker and Allstate Corporations.
Chief Customer Officer 2.0 will give you a proven framework that has launched and advanced the customer experience transformation in businesses in every vertical around the world. And it will take years off your learning curve.

What Customers Crave: How to Create Relevant and Memorable Experiences at Every Touchpoint by Nicholas J. Webb

Nicholas J. Webb is a popular speaker and corporate strategist in the areas of customer experience design and innovation. His firm, Cravve, provides consulting and training to many of the world’s top brands.
What Customers Crave, author and business strategist Nicholas Webb simplifies this critical task into being able to confidently answer two questions: What do your customers love? What do they hate?Jam-packed with tools and examples, this must-have resource helps businesses reinvent how they engage with customers (both physical and virtual).


Inside Your Customer’s Imagination: 5 Secrets for Creating Breakthrough Products, Services, and Solutions by CHIP R. BELL

Chip R. Bell is senior partner of the Chip Bell Group. For the sixth year in a row, Global Gurus in 2020 ranked him one of the top three keynote speakers in the world on customer service. Bell has appeared on CNBC, CNN, Fox Business, Bloomberg TV, ABC, CBS, and NPR, and his work has been featured in Fortune, Wall Street Journal, Financial Times, USA Today, Success, Businessweek, Entrepreneur, Money, and Fast Company. He is a regular columnist for Forbes.com, MoneyInc.com, CEOWORLD Magazine, Real Leaders, and TheCEOMagazine.com.
In this book, using examples from organizations like McDonald’s, DHL, Marriott, Lockheed Martin, Discover Financial, Ultimate Software, and many more, Bell shows how co-creation partnerships enable you to tap into the treasure trove of ideas, ingenuity, and genius-in-the-raw within every customer.


Mapping Experiences by James Kalbach

Author Jim Kalbach, Principal UX Designer with Citrix, introduces you to the principles behind alignment diagrams—a class of deliverables also known as experience mapping—using several examples. You’ll learn how to visually map your existing customer experience, based on user research, and demonstrate how and where customer perspectives intersect with business goals. Using various mapping techniques from UX design, you’ll learn how to turn customer observations into actionable insight for product design.


The Customer Rules: The 39 Essential Rules for Delivering Sensational Service by Lee Cockerell

Lee Cockerell is the author of Creating Magic: 10 Common Sense Leadership Strategies from a Life at Disney, among others. He is the former Executive Vice President of Operations of Walt Disney World and has held executive positions at Hilton Hotels and Marriott. During his distinguished career in the hospitality industry Cockerell earned a worldwide reputation as an expert on the customer experience.
Lee knows that success in business–any business–depends upon winning and keeping customers. In 39 digestible, bite-sized chapters, Lee shares everything he has learned in his 40+ year career in the hospitality industry about creating an environment that keeps customers coming back for more. Here, Lee not only shows why the customer always rules, but also the Rules for serving customers so well they’ll never want to do business with anyone but you.


The Guaranteed Customer Experience – How To Customer By Keeping Your Promises’- Jeff Toister

Jeff Toister is your service culture guide. He is a customer service author, consultant, and trainer. He is also the president of Toister Performance Solutions, Inc., a company that helps companies get their employees obsessed with customer service.
The Guaranteed Customer Experience turns the concept of a guarantee on its head. An experience guarantee goes beyond merely warranting a product against defects. It encompasses the entire customer journey to promise an experience that never falls short of expectations.


Uplifting Service by Ron Kaufman

Ron Kaufman, the founder of UP! Your Service is the world’s premiere thought-leader, educator, and motivator for uplifting customer service and building service cultures.Ron is a columnist at Bloomberg Businessweek and he has been featured in The Wall Street Journal, The New York Times, and USA Today.
In Uplifting Service, Ron takes you on a journey into a new world of service that is guided by fundamental principles and actionable models. After more than two decades helping leaders transform their service cultures, Kaufman has discovered that while each successful team is different, the architecture they apply to build an uplifting service culture is the same.In this New York Times, USA Today, and Amazon.com bestselling book, Kaufman lays out the steps you can take to build a sustainable culture that delivers outstanding service every day.


According to Margaret Atwood, “word, after word, after word is power.” These words can definitely power the way to respond to urgent changes in business and in our environment. Share this among your teams and plot your own journey to arrive at a strategy that works for your customers and your business. Happy reading!


 Photo by Fang-Wei Lin on Unsplas


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