How to Adopt Customer Centricity in a Product-Centric World {Webinar Registration}

Debbie Qaqish

Welcome to 2019, where B2B marketers have over 6,829 marketing technologies to choose from to help solve the same perennial challenge of engaging the customer. But why is customer-centricity so important? While marketers do have a plethora of technologies to choose from, guess what, so do your customers. Debbie Qaqish, TPG’s Chief Strategy Officer comments, “Now, because of all those bright shiny toys [in the martech landscape], the customers are in control,” B2B businesses have no choice BUT to become customer-centric to stay competitive and there is plenty of data to support this theory:

  • The customer experience will overtake price and product as a brand differentiator by 2020. (Walker)

  • 74% of business buyers say they’ll pay more for a great experience. (Salesforce)

  • 95% of customers tell others about a bad experience and 87% share good experiences. (Zendesk)

  • 23% of B2B CMOs see improving customer experience as a top three objective. (Forrester)

  • 86% of B2B CMOs reporting that the consider customer experiences to be very important, yet 57% of them reported only marginal CX performance. (Accenture)

  • 84% of organizations working to improve CX report an increase in revenue. (Dimension Data)

  • Increasing customer retention rates by 5%, increases profits by 25% to 95%. (Bain & Company)

Customer experience is now the emerging competitive differentiator for B2B businesses and the marketing organization is perfectly positioned to lead that change. Easier said than done. Here are a few more statistics that outline the difficulty of this challenge:

  • Only 19% of businesses have a customer experience team tasked with bridging gaps in the business. (Genesys State of CX Report)

  • 52% percent of marketers with CX responsibility expect their budgets to remain the same or decrease in 2018. Though expectations for the importance of CX are rising, CX budgets are not increasing accordingly. (Gartner)

 

Customer Experience Webinar Registration

 

Don’t be discouraged. Marketing can lead this change to customer-centricity which in turn leads to a larger impact on the business. Here are a few steps you can take today to begin planning for this shift:

  1. Know your stuff – Conduct research and become the expert on the value of customer centricity. Review the gazillion metrics and other information that have been published on the value of customer engagement. You already have some here on this blog! Once you have this research, apply it to your organization to create a business case to bring to other functions.

  2. Know your customers – Interview customers and potential customers on what they would like to experience on their customer journey from a company like yours.  Talk to as many customers as possible. Many marketers will also reach out to sales to get their input on their experiences with the customer. While this can be a great data point, marketing needs to have direct communication with customers to hear their point of view.

  3. Make it a team sport – Build alliances across functions by connecting with key stakeholders needed to help map a holistic customer journey.  Share research and suggest easy next steps for the initiative. You can also create a Customer Community of Practice. This means assembling a group comprised of all customer-facing functions in your organization.  

  4. Pilot or experiment – Beginning the shift to customer centricity begins with building the customer journey with maybe one other function such as sales.  You can even do it just within marketing to prove value. Whiteboard the experience. Keep it casual to help facilitate change.

While these steps might seem logical, they aren’t easy. The more planning you can dedicate to this shift the more successful it will be…which means this initiative needs room within your marketing organization. No one is able to shift to customer-centricity if it’s a side job or something you do when you have spare time. It needs to be an initiative.

Approaching the shift to customer-centricity is a big job, but we’d love to help! This quarter we are running a three-part digital workshop free of charge entitled, How to Adopt Customer Centricity in a Product-Centric World led by Debbie Qaqish, our Chief Strategy Officer. Every attendee will receive a workbook to help craft their plan during the sessions. We will also host office hours in between sessions where anyone can join to ask specific questions on how to build your plan.

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