Why the customer experience is your top priority
In 2014, Forbes, in collaboration with EY, conducted a survey of 321 US senior executives from a broad spectrum of industries about the evolving role of marketing in a world where the customer is king. Respondents ranged from C-suite executives to VPs to Directors and held roles in marketing, IT, operations, finance, management and strategy.
Here are the key learnings:
- 66% see collaboration with any aspect of the business that touches the brand as crucial to their success
- Leading organisations work to deliver a carefully designed customer experience from point of sale, to activation or installation, to follow-up and future purchases
- Most companies think their customer experience is misaligned to the priorities of IT and other functions within the organisation
- Leading organisations are planning greater investments in e-commerce
- Improving the customer experience means getting to know the customer by analysing their patterns and behaviours with data
- When the customer experience fails to meet aspirations, organisations should turn to the digital landscape to grow customer value
A great deal has changed about how organisations market to consumers. What has remained constant is the fundamental need to focus on the customer. As CMOs, executives and organisations in general assess what kind of presence to have across digital media — websites, social networks, mobile apps, e-commerce and email — and how to create it, their number one priority must always be the customer experience. The ability to build trusted relationships with their customers will separate the leaders from those left behind.
Data analytics will certainly play a role in building these relationships — gathering, identifying, tracking, measuring and monitoring customer data to enable organisations to personalise customer experiences that consumers will go and tell their friends, families and online communities about. However, harnessing the data organisations have at their disposal and even creating the most amazing customer experience will be possible only if every function that touches the customer works together. The ability to share information, technology, skills and capabilities will ultimately separate the winners from the losers in the increasingly competitive battle to win — and keep — the omnipotent customer.