Customer Think recently had a great article on the predictions for 2015. We as customers know more and expect more.The most forward thinking small businesses will win the race for loyal customers. Price and product are likely to decrease in importance and customer experience will increase in importance and the impact it has on competitive advantage. I would like to add my own take on these for small business owners.
1. We will use data to predict our customers behaviour
“The customer of 2020 will be more informed and in charge of the experience they receive. They will expect companies to know their individual needs and personalize the experience. Immediate resolution will not be fast enough as customers will expect companies to proactively address their current and future needs.To be relevant in 2020, companies must focus on leveraging big data to create a single source of truth and making customer intelligence accessible throughout the enterprise. Companies must consider “insight generation” as a sales enablement function and emphasize proactive and personalized customer support to effectively grow and retain customers.” Tony Zambito
4. Personalising or humanising the customer journey will be a competitive advantage
“B2B decision-makers are putting more emphasis on emotions-based factors versus logic-based. A recent Fortune Knowledge Group study shows 55% of 720 executives surveyed are relying on subjective, hence emotional influence, as opposed to logic-based objectives or factors when making decisions.”
5. How we collaborate is a big competitive advantage To collaborate with customers, employees and partners can only give our customers a better experience. It will allow us to understand them better and give them an immersive experience.
6. By 2017, one third of all customer service interactions will still require the support of a human intermediary (compared to 60% in 2014).By 2018, 50% of agent interactions will be influenced by real-time analytics ~ Gartner Predicts 2015: Weak Mobile Customer Service Is Harming Customer Engagement. Customer service will be more proactive.
7. Maintain a presence across the wide range of platforms that their customers use and make a consistent experience.
8. Surveys are valuable in giving insight but information architecture will become more important as well as customer intelligence.The customer of 2020 will be more informed and in charge of the experience they receive. They will expect companies to know their individual needs and personalize the experience. Immediate resolution will not be fast enough as customers will expect companies to proactively address their current and future needs
9. Customer metrics will be on what customers plan to do. Tracking actions and the return to the business.
10.By 2020, smart phone applications will proactively inform a shopper regarding specific issues with products or retailers upon entering a retailer‘s brick-and-mortar store or using its website. Brand management by 2020 will need to develop a host of new skills, tools, and communication modes, both nimble and innovative, than are typical today. PWC report