Can technology bring us back to the days of grocers, butchers and tailors?

Geschreven door Karolien Engelen op

groceryDid you know that it takes 12 positive customer experiences to make up for one unresolved negative experience ? No wonder then that ‘the customer experience’ is the next big thing, as confirmed by a recent Gartner survey (2014): by 2016, 89% of companies expect to compete mostly on the basis of customer experience – versus a mere 36% four years ago. (“Understanding customers”, Ruby Newell-Legner)

This should, of course, come as no surprise. We all realize that the experience customers have with a given brand directly impacts the brand’s success or failure. Yet how can marketers help provide this extraordinary experience? How can they put the customer at the heart of everything they do?

Long before the digital age, controlling the customer experience was easy. The channels were limited, as were the networks. Shopkeepers intuitively knew that their ability to connect with customers would often determine whether or not their products would be sold. They knew their customers by name, knew all about their families, jobs, hobbies and interests.

Technology has changed all that. Today, customer experiences are no longer restricted to what happens inside the four walls of brick-and-mortar stores. Customers can have pre-purchase experiences through social media, buy goods online and post their feedback – positive or negative – within seconds, for the entire world to see. So how can companies get a grip on the customer experience, in order to improve it?

Marketers who are serious about the customer experience  – which they should be –, have to be able to measure it. Not easy, of course, for something so personal as a customer experience. Yet although hard, it’s not impossible. The solution is called …  technology.

Technology can help companies measure repeat purchases, increased engagement or what people are saying about a brand online, amongst many other things. By leveraging technology to analyze the massive amount of customer data they have at their disposal, marketers will better understand the people buying and consuming their products. So they can provide more targeted content that opens the door to greater consumer trust, loyalty and purchases. Put differently: a company that knows where I live, what my hobbies are and what I do for a living, can send me a newsletter tailored to all my preferences and offer me items of interest that they have in their online store. The odds are then high(er) that they’ll tempt me to buy!

The solutions of hybris, an SAP company, enable marketers to develop a deeper understanding of their customers; to know what they have done, what they may do and, most importantly, what they are doing now. So that they’re able to deliver highly individualized customer experiences across channels, truly connect with their customers and, ultimately, drive sales and profits. Just like the grocer, butcher or tailor did decades ago .

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