Marketing News: Why data-driven interactions are becoming necessary for effective customer service

Marketing News

Why data-driven interactions are becoming necessary for effective customer service

Customer experience isn’t a new concept, but it’s never been more relevant since nearly 90% of buyers say the experience that a company provides matters as much as products and services sold.

That’s according to research by Salesforce, which reveals the growing tension between providing personalised experiences and personal privacy persists.

With daily exposure to mobile devices, social channels and technological advancements our personal and commercial lives have collided in unprecedented ways.

In its annual State of Connected Customer report, which surveyed nearly 17,000 global customers, Gartner found that business buyers expect more from their experience with other brands.

B2B buyers want an experience that is smooth, seamlessly connected, memorable and different. In fact, 85% of customers now expect consistent interactions across departments when they engage with a company. Evidence suggests that not doing so risks losing customers as 55% of those business buyers surveyed lose trust in companies when there’s a lack of consistency across all touchpoints. Who wants or has the time to explain themselves twice?

This is supported by supplementary research from Gartner that reveals 86% of B2B customers expect companies to be well-informed about their personal information during service interactions.

As demand grows for personalisation at scale, and as use of third-party cookies wanes, companies must find new ways to responsibly collect, make sense of, and activate data to discover the trends shaping the future of customer engagement. The trend is that B2B buyers are demanding more real time interaction and communication from companies that they do business with.

And as customers grow ever more selective about the brands they trust, the lack of it can derail a customer’s experience before it even starts.

According to the study, nearly two-thirds (64%) say most companies aren’t transparent about how they use personal information at a time when trust comes at a premium and 74% of customers say communicating honestly and transparently is more important than ever before. Therefore, businesses that clearly articulate how they use their customers’ data can gain and keep their trust.

While customer data is an essential part of delivering personalised experiences, customers need to know that if they hand their data over, it will be safe, used legitimately and beneficial to them.

Whether that’s leveraging predicative intelligence or insight to create personalised emails with offers, sending notifications and discounts via an app on a mobile device or using AI to respond in real time to customer queries.

According to the research, 71% of customers switched brands at least once in the last 12 months and 66% of customers stopped buying from a company whose values didn’t align with their own, suggesting that what a company stands for and the experience they receive heavily influences their decisions on whether or not they will buy from a brand.

To put it simply, brands need to build customer relationships and provide exceptional experiences that exceed expectations to garner trust whenever they interact with customers.

Customers have more choice and freedom than ever before to take their business elsewhere if they’re not receiving the experience they expect.

As products become less distinguishable by brand and price, a great customer experience has become essential for companies to differentiate themselves especially when 56% of customers expect offers to always be personalised to them.

Remember that your buyers have never held more power to choose. Delivering outstanding experiences isn’t a luxury, it’s an expectation!

The good news is that customers are willing to pay a premium for great experiences, which means businesses have a huge opportunity to increase revenue by delighting their customers in a way that no one else can. Those that get it right will be rewarded with repeat business and loyalty.

Reading / Sources
Discover the trends shaping the future of customer engagement Sales Force
Gartner Survey Reveals 86% of B2B Customers Expect Companies to Be Well-Informed About Their Personal Information During Service Interactions Gartner
80 Percent of B2B Buyers Expect Real-Time Interaction Convince& Convert