Customer Experience is the Biggest Opportunity for Growth
If you haven’t already downloaded and read the latest Econsultancy Digital Trends report, then it’s about time!
Through the results we see continuing reinforcement of key trends around a customer centric approach with the priorities for marketers being: personalisation (31%), content optimisation (29%) and social media engagement (25%). We have also seen a stronger focus on some of the organisational capabilities needed to deliver on these go-to-market areas with cultural change and digital integration being an imperative to deliver on a strong customer mind set.
The report is worth reading in full so I won’t give away too many details, but I would just like to pull out a couple of key highlights:
- There is a continued focus on getting the foundation of data-driven marketing right
- Customer experience (CX) is seen as the biggest opportunity for growth
- That streamlined workflows between creative & content marketers is a priority for CX success
- That the challenges in changing the organisational culture to be digitally focused are still there, especially in the APAC region
- That digital integration across the enterprise is needed to scale at speed to meet customer demand
Getting the Foundation of Data-Driven Marketing Right
Getting the foundational elements such as data-driven marketing in place is increasingly seen as the heart of this new customer-centrism, with the vast majority of client-side respondents (90%) ranking data-driven marketing as a top-three priority and over half saying it’s a top priority for them. This focus on data is seen as crucial in supporting what the survey identified as the key opportunity areas for marketers in customer experience and creating compelling content for digital experiences.
Customer Experience as the Biggest Opportunity for Growth
The customer’s experience and the content to support it continue to be top priorities for both marketers and their agencies when they consider where opportunity lies. Just over a fifth (22%) of client-side respondents ranked optimising the customer experience as the single most exciting opportunity for the year ahead, slightly ahead of other areas such as creating compelling content for digital experiences and data-driven marketing (both 16%). This will come with a number of challenges as you read below on some of the foundational aspects required of CX and the organisational change required.
Streamlined Workflows is a Priority for Customer Experience Success
We saw the early focus on customer experience emerge in 2014 as one of marketers’ top priorities, it dominated in 2015 and this year has begun to highlight some of the building blocks needed to deliver on this, especially around streamlined workflows. Having tools that allow for streamlined workflows between creative and content marketers or web teams was ranked as being important to CX success by nearly two-thirds (63%) of responding organisations. However, two in five (40%) rated this as a 4 or 5 on the difficulty scale.
The Challenge in Changing Organisational Culture
Nearly two-fifths (38%) of respondents said organisational culture and a cross team approach with the customer being at the heart is important. However, the survey suggests that a culture conducive to digital innovation is difficult to achieve: 46% of respondents rank the ability to achieve this level of customer focus as 4 or 5 on the difficulty scale. North American (40%) respondents find culture less of a challenge than in APAC (48%), though it remains in the top three most difficult elements to achieve.
Digital Integration Across the Enterprise
There is now a growing expectation that digital should be the responsibility of a far wider grouping of roles, disciplines and functions, but challenges remain on the path to integration. The research is showing us that there’s been little movement in the level of digital integration across an organisation’s marketing activities, with 21% of respondents (up from 20% in 2015) agreeing that digital marketing is very much a separate function. Consumers are engaging with brands across all functions and in order for businesses to be able to scale and innovate at speed to meet these needs, they will need to better integrate their digital capability across their business.
Above are some of the highlights, but I invite you to download the Digital Trends Report 2016 and read more. Please join me in continuing the conversation and putting forward your perspective: @rigbyscott