Friday, February 21, 2014

Customer Experience as the beacon in the quest for intimate and comprehensive knowledge of the customer

I have been working in a Support environment for a little over a year, the focus of every minute of my time and the time of those around me has been on: how do we set ourselves so we know this customer intimately... so that we can be in the best position to present them with the most relevant piece of information... and do it in the best way to lead the customer to the outcome we jointly seek (question effectively answered = satisfied customer).

Lets repeat what I wrote above:
  •  Set ourselves so we know this customer intimately...
  •  Base on that knowledge present them with the most relevant...
  •  That will effectively lead the customer to the outcome we jointly seek...
This is no different to the Sales and Marketing worlds where I have operated for many years in my professional career, the desire for capabilities that enable the business to do the above is actually shared across many different groups in any Company: Marketing, Sales, Support, Talent Acquisition, Product Development, etc.

Thinking and reading about Data-Driven Marketing it became apparent to me that there is a dangerous disconnect..

According to Teradata's Data Driven Marketing Survey results for 2013 top Marketing priorities for the Executives surveyed are:
  • Improve Efficiency 
  • Prove Effectiveness with outcomes, metrics 
  • Cross channel integration 
  • Use of Big Data to Analyze and Understand Customer behavior 
It is actually striking that "Customer Experience" ("Personalization of the Customer Experience") comes at a distant 8th place (to be fair it was ranked at 6th place for the non Executive Marketer in that same survey), the report itself points out (page 27) that "...personalization and a memorable customer experience are just two of the demands almost all marketers agree they are asked to solve."

There are other data snippets in the Teradata's Data Driven Marketing Survey results that point to this disconnect:
  • 74% of marketers say that marketing and IT are not strategic partners in their company.
  • 33% of surveyed marketers Coordinates on an ad hoc or project basis only, and 11% report to work in a silo and function independently.
"Danger Will Robinson!" 

As we drive toward the holy grail of intimate and comprehensive knowledge and understanding of the customer the enablement of best possible (and always improving) Customer Experience must be our beacon, this implies and requires a cross organizational approach of not only the integration of this data but also the processes that derive actionable insights out of it, effecting actions based on those insights and systematic measurement of the business outcomes those actions deliver.

What do you think?

Filiberto Selvas

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