We are undoubtedly entering a phase where businesses with customer-centricity culture and positive purpose will thrive and transform while generating positive outcomes for their customers, teams, partners and the bottom-line.
This principle is becoming paramount in all organisations across industries. In case you have any doubt, here is a quick exercise – post covid19 governments’ measures: ask your team and board members “Where will our revenue come from in the next 3, 6, 9, 12 months?”
Either you are operating in B2B or B2C is not relevant: your existing customers are already revising their financial planning and they will decide whether they want/need your product(s) / service(s) or not.
Do you add value? How customers-centric were you a few months ago? Was the topic added to the “let’s talk about it tomorrow” agenda?
Well, tomorrow is today and yesterday is somehow far away.
Dealing with current customers: It goes without saying that retention rate, cancellation rate, repeat purchase, last/next payments, LifeTime Value, customer care queries, and Net Promoter scores are a good set of indicators to add to your reporting dashboard. If you can, make it visible across the business to infuse customer-centric measurements and transparency in your culture with all stakeholders.
This needs to be completed with a retention strategy and a customer-centric process aligned with all business functions. Make sure everyone cares, as much as colleagues care for each other. Be agile, be helpful, be innovative, be data-driven.
All actions you are planning to take should help to adopt a “customer-first checklist” with questions such as: Does it solve a problem for our customers? Does it add value to our customers? Can we deliver “it” to our customers where they are? Are we dealing with them sensibly? Who owns what in the process?
As for your new customers: the better you understand your customers’ problems, the better your odds of success are. Activate design thinking, engage with your audience(s) and define a value-added customer experience strategy that is purposeful if you intend to make a difference for them! Be relevant, think outside the box, test, learn and validate your assumptions whenever you can.
Let us take a quick look back in the very recent past: What were the top priorities of your business before the mother of all disruption, covid19, settled in our life?
In the last 8 weeks, how many communications have you received from all the businesses you are dealing with (personally and professionally)? Which ones do you care about? Why do they matter? What gets your attention?
Now, think like your customer: Which ones do you think your customers care about? Does your business matter? Have you asked them?
This is a simple approach to accentuate that Empathy and EQ (Emotional Intelligence) are commonly good considerations in implementing customer-centric best practices.
Myriad of forward-thinking organisations have taken the lead by helping communities with acts of generosity and customer engagement strategies with their existing client base and new audiences. A recent good example – amongst many during COVID era- has been delivered by the mindfulness app Headspace (1). The business gave free access to its paid subscription offering to all staff members of US healthcare service and the NHS in the UK (approximately 1.5M people in the UK alone– only accessible with an email address related to the NHS).
This initiative has multiple genuine benefits: it helps everyone with accessing the app to ease anxiety and helps sleep, it strengthens mindfulness in the workplace but it also gets the business some nationwide media publicity and activates new customers segments for Headspace (at scale).
If you ask me, I think this is a “coup de maître” as it demonstrates a customer-centricity culture by delivering value to users with great purpose while making business sense with limited up-front investment (their data will tell the outcomes).
How is your customer-centric business strategy taking shape? What do you think you are missing to pivot your culture? Is your organisation one ecosystem or multiple siloes? Do you know what your customers expect from your organisation? How can your company support society? (2)
These are some questions worth considering when you embark in a customer-centric strategy to earn respect, trust, and loyalty from customers as well as employees, partners, investors and all stakeholders.
Get in touch if you would like to discuss how to assess, define, and deliver business purpose with customer-centric strategies.