Will Scully-Power


State of the Connected Customer Experience

rapid

The connected customer has emerged as the driving force in a world of constant innovation, mobility, and disruption. New technologies have put customers in the driver’s seat of the marketplace — giving them power over which brands sink or swim in the digital age. Companies that treat customers with awareness and intelligence — and put the customer experience at the centre of their business strategies — will succeed in this connected world.

 What defines the connected customer?

• What are their unique preferences and expectation of companies?

• How is technology changing the way customers consume information, communicate with companies, and purchase and seek service from brands?

• What can today’s businesses do to stay ahead of changing customer expectations and avoid disruption?

01 Information-Savvy Customers Now Control the Marketplace

(See page 11)

Recent advances in technology have created an age in which customers are empowered to communicate, research, browse, and purchase wherever they are and whenever they want. Today’s customers expect companies to quickly innovate in accordance with their changing preferences — otherwise they’ll simply switch brands. Seventy percent of consumers agree technology has made it easier than ever to take their business elsewhere.

02 The Culture of Immediacy Drives Mobile-First Expectations

(See page 14)

Smartphones have become ubiquitous for the modern-day customer, especially for millennials, who came of age in a mobile-first world. This constantly connected lifestyle has created a culture of immediacy in which customers’ definition of timely interactions means instant. Sixty-four percent of consumers expect companies to respond and interact with them in real time.

Customers Still Value Human Connections in a Tech-Driven World 03 (See page 17)

Despite their a affinity for faster and smarter technologies, connected customers still want to be treated as human beings with unique preferences — not addresses on an email list. In exchange for their loyalty, customers expect to be heard, understood, and appreciated by companies, like they are when they visit a local shopkeeper. Two-thirds of consumers say they’re likely to switch brands if they’re treated like a number instead of an individual.

New Data-Sharing Attitudes Spark Next Era of Marketing Personalisation (See page 21)

Customers want more intelligent communications from brands. The batch-and-blast method doesn’t work on these customers. They’ve grown to expect tailored recommendations and they’re willing to provide trusted brands with the data that enables such personalised interactions. Sixty-three percent of millennial consumers agree they’re willing to share data with companies that send personalised and discounts.

Smarter Use of Customer Information Expands Opportunities for Sales (See page 25)

Connected customers’ desire to not be treated like a number also means they don’t want to be treated like a cog in the sales machine. Sales organisations must rethink the traditional product-driven sales pitch and focus on leveraging smart tech and data to become trusted advisors to customers. More than three-quarters of consumers say it’s absolutely critical or very important to work with a salesperson who is focused on achieving customer needs instead of making a quick sale.

Fast, Personal Service Is Directly Linked to Customer Loyalty (See page 29)

The connected customer wants a smarter customer service experience — one that is both fast and personal. Gone are the days when customers would settle for extended phone conversations or multiple-day resolutions. Seventy-one percent of consumers say that customer service provided on any day at any time has an influence on loyalty, and almost as many (69%) say the same about personalised customer care.

Download: state-of-the-connected-customer

Source: Salesforce Research

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