Changes in human needs create changes in human behavior. With the pandemic, consumers have had to adapt to the need for social distancing and safety protocols. On the other hand, businesses have adapted to the shift in consumer behavior to remain relevant.
The Future of Customers and Consumers
IDC reported in its Future of Customers and Consumers (FoCC) framework that, “in today’s technology-driven world, customers and consumers have made the experience they receive from a brand a crucial aspect of any engagement or customer journey.”
That report also predicted that “brands will be competing for customers and loyalty based increasingly upon the experience the customer receives, not just the product they buy. To guide organizations through this transition.”
“Technology is playing a key role in the customer experience and the digital transformation of that experience,” the FoCC report stated. “Customers are more technologically connected than ever before and now have amazing technology in their hands, on their laps, and on their desktops from phones to tablets to smart home systems, smart speakers, and wearables.”
IDC “expects companies to spend over $553 billion on customer experience technologies and services,” the report quoted Alan Webber, program vice president and the global lead for IDC’s FoCC research. However, he added that “the actual impact on the customer experience in a dynamic market and the resulting impact on the bottom-line revenue for a brand remains a question for many executives.”
Inspiring Loyalty in the Digital Age
IDC defines the FoCC thus: An empathetic relationship between customers and brands built on what the customer wants and how they want to be treated through the technology lens of awareness, engaging, learning, and, measuring.
According to the FoCC report, “consumers are looking for a memorable differentiated experience”. Differentiated experiences drive loyalty. What’s more, companies are seeing that a loyal customer provides a long-term competitive advantage”. Loyal customers spend, on average, five times more, and tell an average of nine people about a positive experience. A bad experience will be shared with 16 people. Furthermore, it’s more expensive to find new customers than to maintain loyal ones.
IDC’s research shows that 73% of consumers say that a differentiated experience is what inspires their loyalty. According to IDC’s Worldwide Digital Transformation Spending Guide, in 2020, companies are spending $1.4T on digital transformation efforts. Moreover, they have cited customer experience (CX) as the top business function to benefit from this spending.
Using Technology to Improve Customer Experience
Within five years, IDC expects two-thirds of leading consumer brands to employ emotion detection and management technologies to influence customer engagement and purchasing. Because consumers now expect a more personalized experience, companies must focus on business choices that will use [email protected] This will inspire the loyalty that will be key to their future success.
In that regard, businesses need to focus on:
- Predictable communication that is predictable for both customers and brands.
- Lifetime value in product or service in exchange for money is directly tied to the experience the customer receives.
- Applied intelligence builds a portfolio about the customer, the market, and the world.
- Mutual trust enables customers to trust a company with their data, and companies can build long-term relationships based on a trusted partnership with the customer.
For future success, companies must endeavor to be a brand that can partner with future customers on their journeys. In addition, customers must reciprocate with a desire to engage, and with loyalty to brands. Indeed, CX is becoming a critical decision point. Almost 43% of companies IDC surveyed indicate that this is their top goal for the future.
Strong relationships are forged in fire. This time, the crucible is a pandemic. With this, businesses have an opportunity to build loyalty among their target markets with empathy and a strong digital customer experience.
Does your organization transform operations based on a customer-centric model focused on attracting and growing customer loyalty and advocacy. You might be the next Omni-Experience Innovator.