Think Customer – Think Customer Experience
We ran our first ‘Think Customer’ community virtual discussion earlier this month. The aim of these sessions is to provide a safe and stimulating space for clients to discuss relevant issues and share thoughts on challenges that need to be solved, as well as offering shared examples of success that can be utilised. We certainly had some interesting discussions! There were business leaders from a range of our clients including Mars, SHS Drinks, Nelsons and Mizkan.
This first session was focused on key responses to the pre and post pandemic world, and how this might impact interactions and success with customers. – the overall customer experience.
Over the last 18 months our worlds have changed substantially. Change in many areas has been accelerated and new behaviours and norms have been established, that under typical circumstances would have taken years to take route and form. As we begin to enter a ‘post pandemic’ environment, can we get ahead of these new behaviours and environments to succeed in the new world?
Against this we see at least 4 critical themes:
- The pace of change will never be as slow as it is today – consumer dynamics are changing, where you buy is as important as what you buy, the digitized world is accelerating, and the human element of work and life is flux.
- Customers are cutting resources and costs – both at Head Office and operational levels. The move to an online/offline world has placed considerable stress on the business model.
- Interactions with customers are changing – the time we have is shorter (even if we get more engagements), so our teams need to be success in a shorter time window.
- Suppliers are becoming more internally focused – the internal challenge of keeping the business moving has overshadowed the external lens.
Some good debate was had, and encouragingly, it was found that many organisations are facing similar challenges and themes:
- There is an increased frequency of interaction, but with less time per meeting (typically 15 to 30 mins). Our teams need to have the agility to interact differently and be simpler and clearer.
- There is some evidence that meetings are much easier to obtain – particularly across a wider audience within the customer business, so there is an opportunity to leverage a network – but needs to be balanced with sharp focus and careful management.
- The pandemic experience has generated more empathy with work life balance across customer and supplier organisations (we were all in the same storm) – how do we keep this level of relationship moving forward?
- How do we get ‘tactile’ in a digital age and try and remain immersive? For example, an ‘unboxing’ event around new product launches.
- Can we stimulate new types of engagement – for example, the FaceTime calls with buyers in the retailer isle to show the shopper journey.
- There is an increasing demand from customers to meet face-to-face. Are we ready for this?
- Customers have much bigger issues that a product solution – for example HFSS, DRS, continuity of supply – are we connecting on the right topics, with the right level of pace?
- If the traditional conversation with the customer is about price – how does if focus beyond this – into the shopper journey, leveraging data and analytics?
Here at Pure Blue Ocean, we recognise the importance of getting the Customer Experience right. Now, more than ever, as we come out of our lockdown environment, we need to ensure we are connecting at the right time and in the right way with our customers. The rules have changed, the dynamics have moved, and the priorities changed. How do you ensure you can be part of that change and part of the solution for your customers? We can help you achieve this. Get in touch at firstname.lastname@example.org
If you would like to attend our future community discussions, contact us at email@example.com