Experience (Not Size) Matters In Today's Economy

Shalini Mitha

Most organizations have become accustomed to a marketplace that is constantly changing, increasingly diverse, and unquestionably responsive. But it’s not only great products and services that are capturing their attention and hard-earned cash and loyalty. What really matters is the experience provided and expectations met.

Fortunately, many midsize companies are getting the message, according to the findings of the IDC InfoBrief, “The Customer Experience Role in Best-Run Midsize Companies: Embedding Intelligence to Drive CX,” sponsored by SAP. The research reveals that approximately two-thirds of those that are most successful are working toward delivering a differentiated customer experience (CX) by investing in a range of intelligent technologies – such as advanced predictive analytics, Big Data, cognitive computing, artificial intelligence, machine learning, augmented and virtual reality, chatbots, and cloud services.

Use of analytics and Big Data by customer experience professionals

Source:How Data and Analytics Improve Customer Engagement at Midsize Companies,” an infographic based on the IDC InfoBrief, “The Customer Experience Role in Best-Run Midsize Companies: Embedding Intelligence to Drive CX,” sponsored by SAP, February 2019.

Building growth in an economy where experience matters most

The immediacy of the Internet, smartphones, and social media has made it tremendously easier for customers to evaluate which companies provide standout experiences and which do not. It no longer matters if business leaders believe that they are delivering the perfect experience; the proof always appears in the form of sales performance. In fact, customers that are highly engaged with a brand make 90% more frequent purchases and spend 60% during each transaction – and for the business, such success means up to 95% higher profits.1

Seizing the high-growth potential of this new experience economy requires continuous engagement, as well as collection and listening of customer sentiments and intentions. But even possessing every piece of data that’s available in the world does not guarantee that companies can derive the insights necessary to connect with their customers in engaging ways.

All too often, the presence of data silos across marketing, sales, and service is the reason why most organizations fall short of providing superior experiences. As long as data intelligence is separated across hard-to-reach corners of the business, decision-makers will routinely miss feedback and insights that create the complete picture they need to fully understand what customers are doing and why they’re doing it. And perhaps more troublesome is the inability to connect the dots between their customers’ sentiment toward the brand and purchase behaviors.

Let’s face it – analytics solutions can only leverage the data that they can access. Consolidating the full scale of business intelligence into one source can help decision-makers apply analytics in a variety of ways.

For example, businesses need to build a single view of their customers – from what motivated a purchase to which purchases are common among those with similar interests. Then they can offer cross-sell and upsell recommendations and promotions to customers based on past buying behaviors. Or, if customer service interactions spike during a certain time period or use of a product or service, an employee can proactively reach out to the customer to check and deliver services that ensure a satisfactory experience.

Doing what great experience leaders do

Becoming a great CX leader is a matter of ensuring every interaction is personalized, empathetic, and trusted. But without complete insight into the people the business serves, it is impossible to know how to address customer needs and expectations with meaningful actions. Data intelligence and the insights derived help CX leaders connect in the moments that matter most to customers.

Personalization starts with knowing your customers and delivering targeted offers that build brand awareness and equity by uncovering what matters most.

Empathy comes from the knowledge of what customers like and the ability to use that information to proactively recommend additional products.

Trust is earned with a foundation of transparency and control for customers.

The key to accomplishing these attributes of a superior CX is connecting moments that matter across every touch point. For midsize business, this means pulling together data to “hear” what customers want, understanding the reasons behind their demands, and acting on them with a seamlessly connected experience.

Discover how CX leaders are paving the way to digital transformation to create differentiated and personalized customer experiences. Check out the IDC infographic, sponsored by SAP, “How Data and Analytics Improve Customer Engagement at Midsize Companies.”

Sources

1. “Are You Making a Mistake by Focusing Solely on New Customers?” Marketing Land, 2017.