The voice of the customer is getting louder, more effective and targeted. As more and more people get accustomed to using all this “social stuff” the more power surges as a collective voice of the people.
The progress towards convergence will create yet another significant surge in the collective voices of customers. Meanwhile the “voice of the business system” will need to change rapidly in order to survive the new business world of instant feedback, immediate and public customer satisfaction indexes, connected customer communities which can create shifts at the click of a mouse and new competitors born out of the social era.
RightNow Technologies released a white paper titled Customer Communications: Managing The Digital Deluge which states: “In business the Internet can be a blessing—and a curse. On one hand it improves
the reach of both customers and businesses, enabling them to communicate and transact with a wider pool of people and companies. On the other hand, it can also overwhelm: Customers are bombarded with marketing emails and pop-up ads and companies are inundated with support inquiries.”
“What’s troubling is that the digital deluge is only going to increase. Customers now have the resources to communicate and interact how they want, when they want, from wherever they want—creating a cultural shift to an always-on, always-connected society.”
“These digitally connected customers expect more from the companies they do business with. They like the convenience of multiple contact channels, and they don’t wantto repeat all their personal data and history over and over again. Within moment’s of a customer engagement, the service representative should know who they are, why they have called in the past, and their personal preferences. And then there are the cross sell and up sell options. Instead of being subjected to rote offers that are blindly formulaic, customers prefer information and offers that are relevant and timely.”
“Today, customers don’t just welcome multichannel customer relationship management (CRM), they expect it: It’s the baseline for customer service providers. And unfortunately for those merchants and companies that can’t or won’t deliver this level of service, customers are expressing their preferences with their pocketbooks. If your service isn’t up to snuff, your customers will soon become someone else’s.”
“Smart companies are acknowledging this attitudinal shift and responding with a multichannel approach to CRM. Put simply, a multichannel strategy enables companies to create consistently positive customer experiences across multiple channels (i.e., landline, mobile phone, email, Web, and chat).”
“Merely creating a new interaction channel for customers won’t cut it. All of the channels need to be connected, sharing pertinent customer, account, and product data with employees across the enterprise. When this is done well, organizations can create positive customer experiences that will be remembered and appreciated.”
Notice the emphasis on “All of the channels need to be connected”? The report emphasizes connecting the enterprise because the writers know that the customer is and will continue to be connected. The term disconnects between businesses and people will take on a new meaning for businesses who are not preparing for the mergence of the relationship economy. How far away are we from this disruptive dynamic being everyday reality? Oh about a few click years.
Get it? What say you?