Focus on customer experience to build sustainable business


A term that you will read in this column often is commoditisation. Commoditisation happens when the economic value of your product or service is identical to the next, resulting in the adoption of pricing strategies that are often unsustainable all factors considered.

Not every business can or should be involved in creating novel concepts, but each should seek to improve part of the value chain it exists in.

Customer experience is overlooked by many businesses, with the prevailing thought that marketing alone holds the key to sales and by extension, profits.

Focusing on customer experience will unlock insights that should help drive retention and referrals, two critical components of having a sustainable business. Dividends on your direct marketing, both ultimately result in lower costs of customer acquisition.

The cornerstone of developing an intuitive customer experience is speaking to your current or potential customers, understanding what they desire, and distilling that into a product or service that they will find delightful. At its most basic the only technology needed is pen and paper. “

If there is any one secret of success, it lies in the ability to get the other person’s point of view and see things from that person’s angle as well as from your own,” said Henry Ford.

With that out of the way, your business still needs to stand out in the marketplace where there is a marginal difference in the eyes of the consumer between what you and your competition offer. Customer Data Platforms (CDPs) come into play with many tools for the different types and structures of businesses.

CDP’s help businesses understand customers better allowing for differentiation in customer experiences. Well used, your teams, ranging from product, marketing, engineering, and customer service, will pull in the same direction of customer delight despite tracking different sets of team KPI's and metrics.

Your customers exist and engage on different platforms. They expect that you know this and can identify them appropriately. Every customer signal counts and you must make effort to capture first-party data that your current or potential customer may offer. Enrich this through layering trusted and compliant third-party partner data to build a complete picture of your customer.

This makes it easier to convert, cross-sell and upsell customers through the creation of consumption experiences that will feel magical and carry that positive ‘je ne sais quoi’ vibe.

Njihia is the head of business and partnerships at Sure Corporation | | @mbuguanjihia