Today’s buyers are more empowered than ever, with unprecedented access to information and technology. Loyalty is fleeting, price pressure is constant, competition is democratized on a global scale, new channels abound, and influences are always in flux. Upstarts like Uber and AirBnB have risen almost overnight to challenge mature industries. Peer reviews and social sharing often have greater influence than traditional advertising.
Enterprises are adapting and leveraging evolving digital technologies to compete more effectively in the modern marketplace. Below are the key drivers for success in effectively transforming to a customer-centric enterprise, along with key enablers to get there.
Deep understanding of the customer. This is the foundation upon which all efforts are built. Our success as marketers will be directly related to our depth of understanding of our customers. While this is not a new concept or a uniquely digital concept, the granularity, tools, data points and influences have perhaps never been more varied. Fortunately, the technologies available to marketers to harness and understand customer data has also matured greatly.
Omni-channel customer engagement. Consumers today constantly traverse marketing channels, and expect the brands they engage to keep pace. The customer engagement process must be tailored by channel, customized for the shopper journey, personalized for the customer, and focused on engagement and creating a dialogue. From websites to mobile apps, email, call centers and even off-line touchpoints, the experience must be seamless and continuous.
Data-driven decision making. Companies must leverage real-time data, advanced analytics and visualizations in order to deliver the value needed by today’s consumers. This effort will be enabled through centralized customer data assets comprised of internal and external sources, and will aid CRM, marketing automation, personalization, advertising, service and support, and product development.
Pervasive personalization. It’s actually a pretty simple concept – leverage technology and data to humanize marketing delivery. The challenge is doing it at scale, in real time, and in a constantly adapting environment. Following a framework to introduce customization, segmentation and individualization across touchpoints to provide an increasingly bespoke experience is rapidly becoming a standard. Early adopters are reaping the benefits; late adopters are becoming marginalized.
Data centralization. Providing a seamless, omni-channel experience in a constantly evolving shopper journey is simply not possible without direct access to significant data resources across channels. Channel-specific data sources used for specific purposes—for example website click data used for adapting the website experience, or email data used for personalizing email messages—are useful on a per-channel basis. However, the emerging need is for creating single repositories for these types of channel activity data, as well as the more substantial data sets needed for robust analytics and the resulting personalization. These data sets would include enterprise transactional data, deep customer profile data, 3rd party behavioral data, and more. The ultimate data resource lives outside of any specific channel and is made available across all channels, truly enabling the omni-channel experience.
Capability harmonization. We used to champion the concept of multi-channel marketing – using several different channels to distribute a marketing message. We have now evolved to an omni-channel state where a single conversation needs to take place independent of a specific channel, and across channels. While we often see a proliferation of different tools into enterprises with multiple brands and business units – often driven at the brand or agency level – there is a strong case to be made for standardizing on a core capability toolset. Without a harmonized capability strategy the goal of a providing customer experience that shifts seamlessly between channels will be difficult to achieve, and more difficult to maintain.
MAKE DIGITAL REAL
At Mindtree, we have found there are four pillars of success that are critical for any enterprise undergoing a digital transformation.
- Creating digital customer experiences
- Digitizing the value chain
- Developing sense-and-respond systems
- Shaping innovative business models and partnerships
We are highly passionate about helping companies blend these four distinct models to become a customer-centric digital enterprise. Have a look at real-world examples of companies that have taken digital to the next level.