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What does Digital Transformation really mean? In post two of our series, learn about the pivotal role that customer service plays in your business success.
How is it that according to a recent study by Bain and Company, 80% of CEOs believe their companies deliver superior customer service, yet only 8% of customers agree? That’s a pretty significant disconnect to say the least. To begin to understand that discrepancy, we have to look at what “customer service” really is—where it starts and where it ends.
Too often, organizations look at customer service as post sales support, a very narrow and potentially perilous position. In today’s digitally hyped up world where content is king and the consumer has access to literally infinite information on virtually every topic imaginable, the customer service net needs to be more broadly cast.
Typically, a buyer’s first touch with your organization is digital—through a website, Google search or social. Sales opportunities begin then, and if your digital experience is anything less than satisfying, you are just a click away from elimination. In fact, by the time potential customers engage with you directly, they’ve already done more than two-thirds of their pre-purchase decision making.
So, it’s fair to say that customer service must begin with that first digital touch. If you are lucky to engage a prospect at this “discover” phase, make sure your digital systems are ready to do the heavy lifting and support the prospect throughout their journey. That means designing, building and supporting an omni-channel experience—an engagement model that aligns customers with the right channels at the right time—whether its web, mobile, in-person or telephone.
But effective customer engagement is much more than UX. It’s knowing how to analyze and optimize experiences in a cohesive way—spoon feeding data and information that answers questions before they’re asked—the new normal that is now essential to effective customer engagement. This is where IT comes in. Their intimate knowledge and involvement with both front end and backend systems gives them the unique ability to tap into many data sources to create the foundations for engaging experiences that drive the customer journey.
Getting the digital experience right from the discovery phase to consideration, decision-making and ultimately purchase, is crucial to customer satisfaction and is the responsibility of the entire organization—from the CEO and CMO to IT, sales and customer service.
Read more about how to get customer service right in, The Digital Ultimatum: Why Businesses Must Digitally Transform to Survive—and Thrive.
Mark Troester is the Vice President of Strategy at Progress. He guides the strategic go-to-market efforts for the Progress cognitive-first strategy. Mark has extensive experience in bringing application development and big data products to market. Previously, he led product marketing efforts at Sonatype, SAS and Progress DataDirect. Before these positions, Mark worked as a developer and developer manager for start-ups and enterprises alike. You can find him on LinkedIn or @mtroester on Twitter.
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